Island Vibes December 2023

Happy Holidays from the Charleston Coast CHARLESTON COAST VACATIONS Real Estate 800.476.8444 • Vacation Rentals 888.250.8730 • • Proud Sponsors of the IOP Recreation Department, IOP Garden Club, IOP Exchange Club, LENS Foundation of IOP, Adopt a Highway (Palm Blvd), East Cooper Meals on Wheels, East Cooper Habitat for Humanity, Flags for Heroes, Presenting Sponsors of the IOP Connector Run, and more.

t was closer than most Kentucky Derby races and needed final confirmation and certification from the Charleston County Board of Voter Registration and Elections to verify the winners. But with eight candidates running for four seats on the Isle of Palms City Council, two challengers and two incumbents prevailed in the Nov. 7 election, which brought out more than half of the 3 NEWS Continued on page 8 Living and Selling the Lowcountry Lifestyle 2021-2022 Sales volume $94,000,000+ IOP RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE 1100 Palm Blvd. 2C Isle of Palms, SC 29451 Amy Rogers REALTOR OF DISTINCTION 843-824-4892 As seen on IOP election yields new and familiar faces; short-term rental cap fails By L. C. Leach III I island’s eligible voters. “There were 2,569 votes cast in the Isle of Palms election, with voter turnout coming in at 56.86 percent – which is pretty high for a municipal election,” said Matt Dillane, marketing and communications coordinator with the Charleston County Board of Voter Registration and Elections. “Whereas for all of the rest of Charleston County’s municipal elections, voter turnout was only 22.91 percent.” The high percentage of IOP voter turnout was due mainly to a long-simmering referendum question on the issue of whether or not to cap short-term rentals and partly to the combination of old and new candidates. First-time electee Elizabeth Campsen polled 1,346 votes – more than any other IOP candidate. Scott Pierce finished a close second, gaining re-election with 1,300 votes. First-time candidate Ashley Carroll placed third with 1,239 votes. Longtime city council member Jimmy Ward gained his fifth non-consecutive term of office by tallying 1,230 votes. “I’ve always tried to pay attention to the job and come prepared for positive solutions for the city,” said Ward, a resident since 1986. “Employee retention will be an issue for us in the new year, and we need to hold onto good people, especially police and fire workers.” Carroll, co-owner of Carroll Realty, stated that she is grateful to have been elected, and her initial focus now is to “foster a more united council and community to keep

reated on a chilly island afternoon, the December Island Vibes snowman cover was a labor of love from start to finish. Sculpted by the award-winning talent of local artists Tommy Freeman and Doug Vogel, our sandy snowman brought warm smiles to the curious crowd of islanders who gathered to catch a glimpse of the work in progress. The talent behind this cover’s masterpiece has been competing in the annual Piccolo Photographer Tonya McGue offered the finishing touches with a festive hat and scarf just as the rain began to intensify. Frosty was built well below the high tide mark, ensuring he would be taken out with the tide. No sea or land creatures were harmed in the creation of this happy, charming Lowcountry snowman. Cheers! 4 FROM THE CREW Island Vibes Vol. 1, Issue 3 December 2023 PUBLISHER BILL MACCHIO PUBLISHER@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM MANAGING EDITOR ZACH GIROUX EDITOR@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM ART/ADS PRODUCTION DIRECTOR BETHANY LONG ASSISTANT TO THE PUBLISHER JENNIFER BURKE JENNIFER@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM BRAND AMBASSADOR SONYA BUCKHANNON SONYA@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER MORGAN WINNINGHAM SOCIALMEDIA@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM COPY EDITOR COLIN MCCANDLESS PHOTOGRAPHY TONYA MCGUE CONTRIBUTORS ISABEL ALVAREZ ARATA • HEATHER ROSE ARTUSHIN • ROBBIE BERG RYAN BUCKHANNON • SONYA BUCKHANNON MARY COY • MAURICE FRAZIER CLARK LEACH • COLIN MCCANDLESS JULIE NESTLER • PHILLIP POUNDS GINGER SOTTILE • RUSTY STREETMAN SALES REPRESENTATIVES ANDY BIMONTE ANDY@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM STACEY MCLOUGHLIN STACEY@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM ADMINISTRATION & BOOKKEEPING GINGER SOTTILE BOSS DOG REGGIE DISTRIBUTION ISLE OF PALMS • WILD DUNES • GOAT ISLAND DEWEES ISLAND • U.S. POST OFFICE • HARRIS TEETER • PUBLIX • ASHEVILLE/HENDERSON AIRPORT • ALL SC WELCOME CENTERS is published locally by a team of independent contractors. is published 12 times per year by Islands Publishing LLC. 1013 Chuck Dawley Blvd., Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 Copyright © Islands Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction electronically or in print format without the expressed written consent of the publisher is strictly prohibited and a violation of U.S. copyright laws. Content, including editorial, advertising or comments, that threatens, harasses or degrades others may be revoked or refused from print and online publication at the sole discretion of Island Vibes. Inquiries to: Island Vibes P.O. Box 22617, Charleston, SC 29413 D The pride of Isle of Palms yesterday, today and tomorrow. Publisher’s Note This is a good time of year to look back on the previous year’s endeavors. It’s not every year that your undertakings include launching a new publication, especially one like Island Vibes. As Zach mentions in his editor’s note, we started Island Vibes during Isle of Palms’ election season. Not just any election, but one that included a referendum for capping island short-term rentals and a slate of eight candidates to fill four seats on the IOP City Council. It was an election that divided Isle of Palms like few others. The issues surrounding this election motivated 56.86 percent of island voters to cast their ballots — an amazing turnout considering the average Charleston Country turnout for the recent elections was 22.91 percent. Vibe: A distinctive feeling or quality capable of being sensed. That’s the definition, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. The same can be said about the positive aura and energy that Island Vibes is projecting across Isle of Palms. First impressions are crucial, particularly when you launch a newspaper at the height of election season. Now that the election is over and we’re out of the woods, it’s fair to say we couldn’t have picked a more pivotal time. I’d even venture to say that Editor’s Note About the Cover As a publisher, it’s important to always include the viewpoints of all sides. Your opinion on any matter is irrelevant; in this position you need to be unbiased and impartial. It’s about telling everyone’s story, not promoting your opinions. As a credible publication without an agenda, except to spread positive vibes on and off the island, leading up to election day we reached out to all candidates. We wanted our readers to become familiar with everyone who was running. Island Vibes shared unbiased coverage in our paper, and on social media and our podcast, In retrospect, Isle of Palms voters led the way with the largest turnout of voters in any municipality in Charleston County, 33.95 percent more than the average. That’s aswe’re better for it and here’s why. The adage, “your vibe attracts your tribe” may be cliché, but it couldn’t be more accurate. Since the inception of this newborn newspaper, we’ve been blessed to have the island community as a whole in our corner, especially with all of the contentiousness and divisiveness fevered by politics. The impetus for creating Island Vibes was and is to foster the unity of all things IOP. Thanks be to the man above, our brilliant staff and loyal supporters C For advertising, contact Bill Macchio at or (843) 530-0403. For editorial, contact Zach Giroux at or (802) 733-6321. Spoleto Sand Sculpting Competition on the Isle of Palms for more than 10 years, winning in nearly every category including the highly coveted “Best in Show.” Generally a fair weather activity, sand sculpting presents its own unique set of challenges. Luckily for our artists, the drizzle on this blustery day provided just the right amount of water for a relatively easy sculpt. A bit of stress near the end with the partial collapse at the base of the snowman did not fluster our artists in the least. They simply regrouped, redid and regained a solid foundation for their “Frosty” lookalike. Frosty the Sandman By Laura Fogarty who make this pipe dream a reality. Furthermore, a special thanks to our readers, advertisers and residents who regularly attend our monthly launch parties each issue. It’s imperative for us to celebrate the most paramount part of this publication: the people. We thank you, we hear you and we’re here for you! See you around the island! Positively yours, Zach Giroux Managing Editor tounding! I hope this is a reboot for Isle of Palms, one that will encourage people to engage in meaningful and constructive conversations no matter what your position is. Thanks for reading Island Vibes. If y’all like it half as much as we love publishing it, then we know y’all are feeling the vibe! Positively yours, Bill Macchio Publisher

he high quality of living and lifestyle on Isle of Palms is about to be improved even further. When the island’s new $26.2 million wastewater treatment plant begins operations in January 2024, it will not only represent a state-of-the-art facility to benefit all residents for many decades, but will mark a big step forward in the entire community’s livability. “The project is Forest Trails Wastewater Treatment Plant Consolidation,” said Chris Jordan, general manager of Isle of Palms Water & Sewer Commission. “And it is built to last for 50-70 years, and is definitely better than what we’re replacing.” The island is presently served by two existing wastewater treatment plants: the Forest Trails and the Wild Dunes facilities. Forest Trails was replaced with a cast-in-place concrete structure and improved treatment process 5 NEWS T New wastewater treatment plant wait is over, operations start January By L. C. Leach III in 2014. Wild Dunes, in operation since the 1970s, requires continuous maintenance and needs to be replaced, which is part of the reason for the consolidation. “Together these two plants have served opposite sides of the island,” Jordan said. “The new consolidated plant will serve the entire island with more capacity and room for expansion.” For example, the new plant alone can treat 1.4 million gallons of effluent per day — approximately the same as the two existing plants combined — enough to serve all 4,300-plus residents. Designed for future island growth and needs, the plant can be expanded to handle 2.7 million gallons per day, plus room for adding additional equipment as necessary. “It utilizes what’s known as Membrane Bioreactor: high-level wastewater treatment technology which produces re-use quality effluent,” explained Jordan. “And we will not have to build any additional tanks— only add additional membranes and equipment.” The new plant, designed by Thomas & Hutton Engineering Services in Mount Pleasant, was planned in part with respect to the island’s limited space for growth. Almost all available space on IOP is built out, but the number of island visitors routinely surpasses the number of residents — often reaching as high as 12,000-20,000 during the height of the summer tourist season. “This new plant is designed to handle that kind of capacity,” Jordan said. “And the consolidation is a complete system consisting of pumps, motors, piping with associated valves, wet well, power supply and an alarm system.” The new plant, one of IOP’s capital projects, was almost 10 years in the making, and involved two phases. Phase I was completed in 2014 with the replacement of Forest Trails Wastewater Treatment Plant. The consolidation, once finished in March 2024, will complete Phase II, more than two years after construction began. “This is a high-level tertiary (third stage) treatment plant,” Jordan said. “The effluent is a lot better for the environment, and since the structure is made of concrete instead of steel, it won’t corrode as readily as the facilities we’re replacing.” Ultraviolet light will be utilized to disinfect treated effluent to kill or inactivate microorganisms in the wastewater. And the new plant will have both a primary screen opening and a smaller, finer screen to remove additional material. “The new facility is also fortified and flood-proofed to withstand hurricanes and storm surge,” added Jordan. And a major long-term objective for the new plant is to eventually serve all remaining unsewered areas on the island within eight years. In that time, Jordan said he and other planners expect the new plant to eliminate the need for septic tanks, which currently serve approximately a quarter of all island residents. “The whole septic/gravity sewer is a pretty hot topic right now,” Jordan said. “There are approximately 1,175 septic tanks on the IOP. If an island property served by septic is a rental, its system could potentially become overloaded with a house full of people. But gravity sewer that goes to a collection system and is treated at a wastewater treatment plant is very reliable. Of course, in addition to being more efficient and environmentally safe, the new plant will, in its own way, help to keep Isle of Palms the kind of resort and vacation spot that residents and visitors alike have come to enjoy for many generations. “And this new plant will certainly do its part in keeping the island worry-free from sewer and sewage problems,” Jordan said.

hen waters rise, Isle of Palms residents can rest assured that Robert Asero and his Public Works crew are working tirelessly to manage stormwater, minimize flood risks and maintain 6 NEWS IOP Cleanup Crew co-founder honored for litter prevention efforts By Isabel Alvarez Arata IOP Public Works assistant director recognized for city service By Heather Rose Artushin W nvironmentalist Susan Hill Smith recently received the Spirit of the Island Award in honor of her work as co-founder of the Isle of Palms Cleanup Crew. The prestigious honor recognizes an individual or organization that has made significant contributions to IOP through achievement, community service and volunteerism. Smith, a longtime island resident and former IOP City Council member, accepted the award alongside the IOP Cleanup Crew’s other co-founder, Katrina Naz Limbach, and a dozen volunteers at a council meeting on Oct. 24. The award requires an official nomination and review by a nomination committee, which includes the city’s mayor. “The recognition has extra meaning because the nomination came from islander Sarah Parker Daniel,” Smith said. “She does a great deal herself to keep our beach clean, healthy and E beautiful by regularly picking up litter, including left-behind items like plastic toys.” At the award ceremony, Smith expressed gratitude for the city’s willingness to spotlight the IOP Cleanup Crew’s commitment to finding solutions for the island’s litter and pollution crisis. Although Smith was recognized as an individual, she was steadfast in recognizing that the honor belonged to the IOP Cleanup Crew as a whole. Smith thanked Limbach and city administrator Desiree Fragoso for connecting her with her co-founder. She also recognized the group’s partnership with the South Carolina Aquarium’s conservation team as an integral part of the clean-up efforts. Smith also acknowledged those who have contributed to the IOP Cleanup Crew’s success, including islanders Rebecca Stephenson and her family as well as Howard Hogue, known as “Beach Santa,” for their enthusiasm and engagement. Smith also expressed thanks toward local businesses such as Team Blue from South Carolina Federal Credit Union for supporting the IOP Cleanup Crew through their employee volunteer program and various local restaurants for their ongoing sponsorship. She named The Windjammer and Acme Lowcountry Kitchen, two local businesses that have supported the group from its early days. Together, Smith and the IOP Cleanup Crew use volunteer power to keep the island’s coast clean. By collecting coastal waste, the group has been protecting the island’s natural ecosystems and public health since 2018 and has brought together thousands of volunteers from across the Lowcountry and beyond for their litter sweeps. It has also created awareness and inspired others to clean up on their own time. Smith noted that she is passionate about protecting the beauty of the Isle of Palms and recognizes that doing so is a monumental undertaking that requires the support of city leaders, residents and visitors. She also intends to put increased emphasis on litter prevention moving forward. Smith hopes to educate the public on the importance of avoiding single-use items such as water bottles and juice boxes at the beach. She’d like to see beachgoers relying instead on reusable items and learning about local ordinances that prohibit smoking, balloons, straws, plastic bags, Styrofoam and more. For more information on beach rules and regulations, visit beach-rules. Isle of Palms Public Works assistant director Robert Asero recently received the annual Leola Hanbury Award for exemplary service to the city in 2023. the city’s infrastructure. Asero, the assistant director, was recently honored with the Leola Hanbury Award in recognition of the excellence and passion with which he approaches his work for the city. “It is nice to be recognized by your peers and administration for the work you do,” said Asero. The Leola Hanbury Award honors former IOP City Council member Ms. Hanbury’s wishes to create an Employee of the Year Award with the $25,000 gift she left to the city. Five-hundred dollars is awarded annually to one employee displaying exemplary service, going above and beyond normal job requirements and expectations, while demonstrating integrity and a strong commitment to the Isle of Palms. “What I love most about my role with the city is being involved with large or small projects and improving all aspects of the city,” Asero reflected. “Isle of Palms has a small town vibe, you are not just a number. Our efforts are appreciated throughout the year by the residents and visitors.” In addition to exemplary achievement and performance, the Leola Hanbury Award honors excellence in customer service and personal interaction with colleagues and community members. Innovation and creativity that improves the quality of service and reduces cost is also taken into consideration when selecting a candidate for the award. After beginning his career by starting his own construction and contracting business, Asero turned to public service. Ever since, he’s been committed to continuing to improve the quality of life of residents and giving visitors a memorable experience while vacationing. Asero’s diligence, commitment to the Isle of Palms community and creative problem-solving abilities are truly an island treasure. “When you are a business owner, your name and the quality of work is your reputation,” Asero added. “I’ve carried that value over to give the residents of the Isle of Palms the best service possible.” IOP Mayor Phillip Pounds said it best, “Robert, this award is a testament to your abilities, remarkable work ethic and overall outstanding performance. We are grateful for everything you do to make our city a better place. We have a great staff serving our city. If you see them around our community, take a moment to let them know how much you appreciate them.” Photo Provided IOP Cleanup Crew co-founder Susan Hill Smith receives the Spirit of the Island Award at an IOP City Council meeting on Oct. 24, 2023. Photo Provided

commitment. This gift is a powerful act of kindness that should inspire us to take action and safeguard our community on all levels and at all times. The installation of this life ring marks a pivotal step towards ensuring that our city dock becomes a safer haven for all. As we do so, we carry the memory of Lopez in our hearts — a poignant reminder of our collective duty to protect and nurture our community. In the name of Lopez, Redmond and all first responders that protect and put our community’s safety in front of theirs, we unite in the spirit of benevolence. Together, we can make a profound impact on the lives of those we cherish. Let this life ring stand as a symbol of our dedication to the well-being and safety of our beloved community. symbolizes not only love and compassion but also serves as a tribute to our Isle of Palms firefighters and our dedicated police officers who face such heartbreaking situations daily, risking their lives for our safety. The life ring stands as a powerful symbol of hope and security — a declaration that our community looks out for one another. It signifies that we refuse to remain passive when our fellow residents and visitors are at risk. It is a testament to the idea that one person, like young Redmond, can ignite change through compassion and dedication, and that change can ripple through our community to save lives. Let us remember Lopez and others who have suffered due to the absence of safety measures at our docks nationwide. Their stories should be our driving force, reminding us that our community thrives on kindness and ateo Lopez, 22, a young father of two, tragically lost his life on Oct. 5, 2022, just 10 feet from a dock on Lake Norman, North Carolina, reported by Cornellius Today. Witnessed by a crowd, Lopez’s struggle was agonizingly visible, but the absence of proper rescue equipment and bystanders who couldn’t swim left them feeling powerless. Among those witnesses was 13-yearold Cade Redmond, who struggled to understand how a life could be lost amidst a crowd of people. The need for immediate, life-saving solutions weighed heavily on his young shoulders. Redmond embarked on a mission, the “Devoted Float” campaign, to raise awareness and resources for life-saving devices at our docksides. This grassroots movement swiftly garnered support from various or7 OPINION Island democracy Hello Isle of Palms community, neighbors and friends! Now that the election is over and the results have been officially confirmed and certified, I wanted to reach out and thank you for the opportunity to serve on the IOP City Council for the past four years. I have been honored to represent you as best I can on island issues, and I leave the council with no regrets for the positions I’ve taken, on your behalf, over the past four years. I would also like to thank the many supporters that provided encouragement to me during the campaign and actively supported Letters to the Editor to seeing you around the island at our events, public functions, the beach and the excellent restaurants and venues that abound here on the Isle of Palms. Respectfully, Rusty Streetman Isle of Palms Life ring donation inflates water safety concerns following drowning By Julie Nestler GOT A COMMENT? Island Vibes DISCLAIMER Island Vibes. me for re-election. I’m obviously disappointed I wasn’t re-elected to a second term, but I definitely respect the outcome. The voters spoke with their ballots! To that end, I also want to congratulate the “new council” that will be sworn in soon, and I assure you I will be supportive of your efforts to govern wisely for the benefit of our wonderful island and its residents and stakeholders. My sincere congratulations to Elizabeth Campsen and Ashley Carroll on earning a council seat, and the same sincere congratulations to Jimmy Ward and Scott Pierce on your re-election to council. And a big thank you to Brian Duffy, Tim Ahmuty and Kevin Popson for your willingness to step up, run for council and publicly serve the IOP community. I would be remiss if I didn’t thank all the family and friends, of all the candidates, for their support. Campaigning can be tough and stressful for them as well. I love the Isle of Palms, having spent almost 40 years here and I will continue to be a strong advocate for further improvement of this beautiful slice of paradise we are all privileged to live on. My pledge is to be a positive voice as a citizen resident, and I won’t hesitate to openly express my opinions on important island issues. However, you can count on me to be respectful of all others in doing so. Again, thank you for the honor and opportunity to serve you in our representative democracy over the past four years, and I’m looking forward Isle of Palms Fire Department personnel promote water safety with a life ring newly donated from the Nestler family. ganizations, including the Qualified Captain, West Marine, law enforcement agencies, fire departments and the U.S. Coast Guard. They recognized the urgency of spreading this life-saving message nationally. Our beloved Isle of Palms city dock, a place of joy and relaxation for residents and visitors, shockingly lacked a fundamental safety feature — a life ring. Astonishingly, one in seven unintentional deaths result from drowning, leading to approximately 4,000 fatalities each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The absence of a life ring raises a haunting question: Could Mateo Lopez still be with his family today if a life ring had been there that fateful day? In the spirit of love for our island and the safety of our community, our family has stepped forward and donated a life ring for our city dock. This gift M Photo Provided

FOR OUR FOOD TRUCK TEXT US AT 843-214-6299 FOR OUR IOP LOCATION EMAIL US AT PAPISTAQUERIA@GMAIL.COM WE CAN CATER YOUR HOLIDAY PARTY AT OUR NEW LOCATION ON IOP OR WE CAN COME TO YOU! Follow Us @cachitaskitchen on Instagram 8 NEWS From Page 3 our island progressing.” She added, “Trust and communication is what I hope we can put back into the council as a whole. And I want us to get started on the right foot, even if we tend to disagree on some things.” Aside from choosing candidates, residents were asked on the election ballots whether the city should cap the number of investment shortterm rental business licenses at a maximum of 1,600. A total of 1,393 residents not only said ‘no’ to a cap, their decisive 54.5 percent of the vote means that any future cap as originally proposed by proponents is unlikely to happen across the island. “I’m very pleased the residents voted down a very poorly written and misguided referendum,” said Terri Haack, the designated representative of Wild Dunes, LLC, owner of Wild Dunes Resort. “A very small percentage of residents were attempting to regulate property rights. And if the two-thirds of the property owners that didn’t have a say in this vote had voted, I think the outcome would have been even more lopsided.” Mayor Phillip Pounds pointed out that the issue will likely be settled at some moment in the near future only by “an action of the council.” Current council member Blair Hahn said that both new and old members will have to set aside differing opinions to come up with a long-term solution. “Now that the election is behind us, I would like to start the process of crafting a short-term rental ordinance that does what the vast majority of the island says they want: protect residential neighborhoods,” asserted Hahn. “And in 2024, I expect the state legislature to pass a measure which, going forward, will void any STR cap ordinance.” The state house currently has a pending bill that, if passed, would require any qualifying short-term rental properties to be assessed at 6 percent of their value. “Primary residencies are taxed at 4 percent of their assessed value, second homes and STRs are taxed at 6 percent,” said Rep. W. Lee Hewitt (R) of South Carolina House District 108, which includes Charleston and Georgetown counties. “So even if a property owner on Isle of Palms wanted to turn their primary residence into a part-time STR, they would have to exceed 72 days as an STR for the tax rate to go from 4 percent to 6 percent.” “I’m sure we can look at the facts and data and see if we need to craft an ordinance that will work for everyone on the island,” Carroll added. Carroll, Campsen, Pierce and Ward will be sworn into office in the new year on Jan. 2, 2024. Editor’s Note: Candidates Elizabeth Campsen and Scott Pierce were contacted for comment, but were unsuccessfully reached by the print of this article’s publication. Jimmy Ward Ashley Carroll Elizabeth Campsen Scott Pierce

9 BUSINESS Passing the baton to the next generation By Robbie Berg IOP Exchange Club What Marty Bettelli and his grandson Elijah Price experienced Oct. 7 during the IOP Connector Run was exactly what the run is all about. The charity event benefits 11 child abuse prevention agencies through grants from the Isle of Palms Exchange Club. Marty Bettelli, a 50 plus year Isle of Palms resident and former IOP City Council member, walked with Elijah’s sister, Margaret, while his 9-year-old grandson ran the race with his mother and father Bridget and Kevin Price. Of course Bettelli is well known on the island for the various civic duties he has performed. Born in Alberta, Canada, Bettelli grew up in Washington state. I am sure if told early in his life that he would be living “the life” on the Isle of Palms, he would never have imagined it. In high school he ran track, pole vaulted and even played football. Bettelli came to Charleston during his service in the Navy and met his wife Linda Condon, a native of Sullivan’s Island, while stationed here. Again, he never would have imagined that he would marry a “Southern island girl” in January 1978, which he recounts with pride. After his service in the Navy on submarines, he worked at Avco-Lycoming in North Charleston, which made helicopter engines. In 2002, he retired from his project manager position with BellSouth. The City of Isle of Palms owes much gratitude to Bettelli for his 20 years on the city council, during which he served on the personnel, public works, public safety and the ways and means committees. Additionally, he served as the CARTA representative for the City of Isle of Palms. As you can tell, community service is in Bettelli’s blood, so he joined the Isle of Palms Exchange Club nine years ago. He has volunteered for the Isle of Palms Connector Run for six years and the oyster roast for eight years. Whenever anyone asks, “Can you help?” Bettelli is always there. For the last two years, he has served on the Isle of Palms Exchange Board and was treasurer last year. This story came to light when Bettelli “proudly” announced at the October IOP Exchange Board meeting that his grandson had finished first in the IOP Connector Run! What a proud grandfather. Elijah is a fourth grade student at Sullivan’s Island Elementary School. He loves math and thinks maybe he will pursue a career in that area. However, for now he loves to run and play tennis. He will also tell you about his proudest accomplishment of running the Cooper River Bridge Run with his mother Bridget. Way to go Elijah! In closing, let this story be a lesson to all grandparents that encouragement can go a long way. Bettelli concluded our interview by saying, “We knew Elijah loved to run when at the age of 4, he asked to run from the IOP Rec Center to our home. We said ‘Yes,’ but drove alongside him in our golf cart all the way to our home over a mile to Hartnett Boulevard.” Way to go Marty and Linda for the encouragement that you gave to your young grandson and continue to give! And for your continued support of the IOP Connector Run for the prevention of child abuse! Photo Provided

importantly, support local. On behalf of the chamber and all its members, I wish you a safe, joyful and festive holiday season. Here’s to creating memories that will warm our hearts throughout the year. Happy Holidays! Warm regards, Ryan Buckhannon President, IOP Chamber of Commerce Chamber Notes: Support local during holidays, shoulder season By Ryan Buckhannon President, IOP Chamber of Commerce s we usher in the holiday season, it’s a time of reflection and joy, a time to celebrate the end of another year and anticipate the promises of a new one. Here on the Isle of Palms, the vibrant hues of our surroundings gradually blend into the serene tones of winter, marking a transition from our bustling tourist season to a quieter, more reflective time. While a natural part of our island’s rhythm, this shift brings a crucial period for our local businesses – the shoulder season. During these months, our community’s true spirit shines brightest. Our local entrepreneurs, who provide so much character and service to our island, rely on us more than ever. As we welcome family and guests to spend the holiday season with us, let’s make it a memorable experience by visiting one of our fine businesses. Whether dining in our charming restaurants or shopping in our unique local stores, every experience here is an opportunity to showcase the heart and soul of our island. This is a perfect way to share the essence of the Isle of Palms with our loved ones, while supporting our community’s economic backbone. The Isle of Palms Chamber of Commerce, alongside its members, is committed to nurturing this sense of community. By supporting each other, we fortify the bonds that make our island not just a destination, but a home. Let’s wrap our island in support and care as we wrap up this year. Buy local, celebrate local and most 10 BUSINESS WELCOME TO #7 - 52ND AVE! Get ready for the tranquil beach vacation that will reset balance in your life when you book this 5-bedroom 3-bathroom home that sits just minutes from the beach, on a secluded street that sets you up for the ultimate peaceful relaxation. At this lovely home, style, comfort, and location intercede to create a dreamy escape to the South Carolina coast! 843-886-9600 A

tion, referendum and related topics, please know our city staff is laser focused on delivering all the projects that city council has determined are priorities for our community. City council receives monthly updates on all the current or upcoming projects. These are also detailed on the city’s website at, with routine updates. If you don’t see something you think we should be working on, please don’t hesitate to email council or visit me during office hours or attend a monthly Coffee with the Mayor. There are many opportunities to be engaged and I hope you will take the opportunity to make your voice a part of the discussion. Thank you for the opportunity to serve! See you around the island. Phillip Pounds, Mayor IOP 843-252-5359 crowding and the growth around us. I couldn’t agree more, which is why we recently kicked off our Tourism Management Plan, which we are calling our Community Enrichment Plan, that I have discussed in recent messages. This will provide residents, business owners and visitors with the opportunity to give input to the city about what is important to you and what we should be doing about managing our thriving tourism economy. I’m hoping you received an email from the city with a link to the survey and were able to provide your input. Also, it’s why we recently held a tourist season debrief meeting with Sullivan’s Island, Folly Beach, Mount Pleasant, SCDOT, Charleston County Parks and Channel 4 to review what has been working the past two seasons and what we can improve upon during our busy tourist season. Even though all the recent headlines have been about the elec11 Mayor’s Message Managing the greatest gift of all, our island By Philip Pounds Mayor, Isle of Palms appy holidays! We have so much to be thankful for living where we do. I hope you get to spend time with friends and family over the upcoming holidays. Each year, election season always produces heightened emotions, spirited discussions and possibly frayed relationships. I hope now that it is over, we can return to more normal conversations, repair relationships, focus on the challenges that lie ahead and support those elected to serve you – your neighbors. Someone recently suggested that city council needed to be focused on bigger issues like overH • Dec. 19 Santa’s Cookie Workshop 2 p.m. at the Rec Center. UPCOMING CITY EVENTS CIVICS to listen to local podcasts and read local magazines digitally. SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2023 THE CONVERSATION CONTINUES AT MOUNTPLEASANTPODCAST.COM FALL EDITION • SMILING FACES • CALENDAR OF EVENTS All Things Autumn Changing of the Seasons Friday Night Lights Local Football Lore Willie’s Roadside Market Cultivating a Legacy Get Outdoors Guide to Hiking & Camping | FB & Instagram @CharlestonWomen Lights! Camera! Women Take Action! Personality and Professionalism Find Your Business Style Anything but Gray New Show Colors The Lowcountry Five Ways to Work from Home that WORK CELEBrating Our Entrepreneurs CHARLESTON ENTREPRENEUR EDITION Summer 2023 POINT SCAN CLICK For distribution or marketing information email or 843-530-0403

CRIME Highs and Lows of High Times Out of 85 incidents, a staggering 22 involved marijuana and drug paraphernalia. It’s like a “bake sale” gone wrong! Remember folks, “Just Say No” isn’t just a catchy slogan; it’s the law. Driving Under the Influence of… Bad Decisions? Seven drivers thought they could outsmart the law and physics by driving under the influence. Spoiler alert: they couldn’t. Also, here’s a friendly reminder: alcohol does not grant superpowers. Resisting arrest only adds to your list of not-so-superhero activities. Let’s stick to sober driving. It’s less expensive and, you know, legal. Repeat Offenders on the Road Now, here’s a puzzler: 25 incidents of driving while suspended or without a license. It seems some drivers think ‘third time’s a charm’ applies to breaking traffic laws. Newsflash: it doesn’t. If your license is more mythical than real, maybe try walking? Seriously, Stay Off the Road To the person with a DUS (driving under suspension) third, it’s not a badge of honor. It’s a sign you should maybe consider alternative transportation. Ever heard of a bicycle? Just don’t steal it, as one individual found out the hard way and ended up charged with grand larceny. Grand Theft Auto is Not a Game And speaking of grand larceny, we had a grand finale with one ambitious individual deciding that stealing from cars wasn’t enough; instead they decided to take an entire car! Congratulations, you’ve won a free stay at the Al Cannon Airbnb in North Charleston! By Detective Dusty Dunes 12 Over the last month, the Isle of Palms Police Department has been busier than a seagull at a beach picnic, handling 85 incidents that make you wonder if common sense took a vacation! So, here’s a friendly reminder for this holiday season: Don’t drive if you shouldn’t, don’t partake if it’s illegal and don’t take what’s not yours. Seems simple, right? Let’s hope next month’s blotter is more about lost cats and noisy neighbors. Stay safe and lawful Isle of Palms! The following incidents were obtained from the Isle of Palms Police Department media log reports. This is a parody of real criminal events that took place between Oct. 15 - Nov. 15. Names of individuals and business locations have been omitted out of respect and privacy. POLICE BLOTTER “Very knowledgeable, responsive and honest. We have bought and sold over 20 homes and never experienced the quality of service that Andrea provided” “...extremely helpful in making recommendations to get our house market-ready. With her suggestions for home improvements, our house sold in a week at the high end of market value.” “Professional, diligent, informed, persistent, good advice during price negotiation, provides assistance and advice through the whole buying process. Andrea is ‘tops’!” 843.532.3010 - CALL ANDREA ROGERS SOUTHERN PROFESSIONALISM A way of life, The way to be Helping people achieve their dreams $95,444,575 in sales

improve the overall experience for golfers.” Although the Harbor Course will be closed beginning in March, you can still satisfy your Wild Dunes golf fix while you await its reopening. The Links Course, also designed by renowned golf course architect Tom Fazio, is not being renovated next year and will remain open for public play. The 18th hole on the Links Course is currently a par 3 and plans are underway to restore it back to a par 4 or par 5. The Links Course will stay open during any refurbishments that may take place. This is the first major renovation to the Harbor Golf Course since it opened in 1985. The Links Course was renovated in 2015. For more information on the Wild Dunes golf courses, visit “Over time, the natural elements and constant use can alter the layout and features of a golf course, affecting its playability. Renovations can enhance the course to make it more enjoyable and challenging for players of various skill levels. Trends in golf course design and technology also have evolved. This renovation will modernize the course to align with these changes, which will ultimately or those golfers who already enjoy the spectacular scenery and beautiful oceanfront views of the Harbor Golf Course at Wild Dunes, your playing experience is about to get even better. Wild Dunes has announced plans to extensively renovate and upgrade its Harbor Golf Course and perform a restoration on the 18th hole of its Links Golf Course. The estimated $8.5 million renovation is scheduled to begin in March 2024 and be completed in late October 2024, according to Wild Dunes Resort Director of Sports Jeff Minton. The Tom-Fazio designed course will be closed during the renovation. The project’s scope and design plans are currently underway. The final planning is still being determined; however, Minton said plans currently include replacing the irrigation system and the golf cart paths, rebuilding the putting greens and 13 SPORTS F Wild Dunes golf course to undergo renovation, suspend play next spring By Colin McCandless restoring them to their original size, laser leveling and re-grassing the tee boxes, renovating bunkers and adding strategically-placed bunkers on certain holes. Many of the golf course bridges will be replaced during the closure as well. Minton noted that these renovations are needed in order to improve the playability of the golf course. Photos provided by The Zimmerman Agency Wild Dunes Links Course Wild Dunes Harbor Course

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Remembering the Isle of Palms Airport: Up, Up and Gone Away By Bill Farley 15 nce upon a time, before it had a bridge from the mainland, Isle of Palms had its own airport. You couldn’t fly directly to London or Los Angeles, but Atlanta and Altoona wouldn’t be out of the question. Perhaps the most important person in the history of this airfield was Haywood “Woody” Faison, who fell in love with flying at the age of 5 in his native North Carolina. Faison learned everything he could about those early flying machines – how to fly them, how to build them, how to repair them – by hanging out at airports, bumming rides and working as a volunteer mechanic. 1939 Citadel graduate, Faison joined the U.S. Army Air Corps when the United States entered World War II, flying 35 B-29 combat missions in the Pacific Theater and winning the Distinguished Flying Cross. Faison stayed on when the Air Corps became the U.S. Air Force, spending 30 more years in uniform and earning the rank of Lt. Colonel. When he retired, Faison headed to South Carolina, setting his sights on the Isle of Palms “Airport.” Constructed in 1951 by the South Carolina Aeronautics Commission, the field initially was a simple 1,800-foot-long by 135-foot runway along the Intracoastal Waterway. North of the intersection of Waterway Boulevard and 34th Avenue, it was paved with crushed oyster shells and had no permanent facilities. By the time Faison arrived, the runway had been lengthened to 2,900 feet but remained little more than a long, flat field used by occasional recreational flyers headed for the IOP beach communities. Faison convinced the South Carolina Aeronautics Commission to let him base his newly-formed Palmetto Air Service at the IOP airfield and, in turn, agreed to pay the Commission 2 cents on every gallon of gas he pumped. And pump he did, from an ancient above ground hand-operated pump located near the makeshift portable building he put up. He added tie-downs for a few planes and a homemade lighting system for night operations and took up residence on Forest Trail, an easy walk to the airstrip. From that once run-down and untended landing strip known as Harold F. Willson Memorial Field, Woody Faison built a thriving airport community. The field served Cessnas, Piper Cubs and Beechcrafts and also the infrequent multi-engine plane. Once, a WW II vintage B-25 landed there on its way to become part of a permanent exhibit aboard the USS Yorktown at Patriots Point. Charlie Way, chairman of the board of the Beach Company and son-inlaw of J.C. Long, who, through his Palm Realty Company (precursor to the Beach Company) helped establish the airfield, recalled the popular “breakfast fly-ins” Faison organized at the thriving little strip. Primarily, the airfield was a convenient way for aviators to reach Isle of Palms, at the time accessible from the mainland only by crossing the two-lane Ben Sawyer Bridge at Sullivan’s Island, then proceeding northeast across Breach Inlet. Edna Young, Faison’s flying protégé, recalled that residents of Goat Island would moor their boats at the airfield and walk across the runway to the stores and the beach. In time, the airfield was home to more than a dozen planes and handled hundreds of transient operations annually. The busy little airport closed in 1984, and Palmetto Air Service moved to Charleston International Airport, then to the East Cooper Airport – now now Mount Pleasant Regional Airport. Edna Young, originally a “go-fer,” later was Faison’s business partner in Palmetto, which focused its operations on flight training. She took over the company when he died and retired from the business in 2016. Today, the former Isle of Palms Airport is familiar to golfers as roughly the 10th, 11th and 12th holes of the Wild Dunes Harbor course. While aviation on Isle of Palms has faded into the halls of memory, its significance as an early landmark in the island’s development lives on. And its history is inextricably linked to a lifelong aviator who just couldn’t see a good opportunity go to waste. By now, you may recognize his name. Aviators flying out of Mount Pleasant Regional Airport are going wheels up from Faison Field. O FEATURE

early everyone has been affected by cancer one way or another, whether directly or indirectly. The second leading cause of death in the U.S. behind only heart disease, the American Cancer Society estimates that there were 1.9 million newly-diagnosed cases and 609,360 cancer deaths in 2022. LOWVELO, a year-long fundraising event in support of MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, aims to help eradicate cancer by supporting research into new treatments and promising approaches to finding cures. The annual ride provides crucial dollars that can be used for high-risk, high-reward projects that sometimes struggle to obtain funding elsewhere. These types of projects can lead to big breakthroughs in 16 SPORTS N LOWVELO supporters posing in front of the LOWVELO sign. LOWVELO riders cycling for the cure during the 5th annual LOWVELO Ride. LOWVELO cycles on to fundraise vital cancer research By Colin McCandless understanding and treating cancer. The 5th annual LOWVELO Ride held Nov. 4 featured different cycling routes all ending at the Isle of Palms. An estimated 1,300 riders participated in LOWVELO in 2023. Riders choose one of five routes based on their desired distance: 10, 20, 23, 50 or 80 miles. There are many ways to participate, including a stationary ride and a virtual ride option. Each rider commits to the cause by fundraising at least a minimum amount based on their chosen distance. The 23-, 50- and 80-mile routes start at Brittlebank Park in downtown Charleston. The 10- and 20-mile Island Rides start on Isle of Palms. All rides end at LOWVELO’s Isle of Palms finish line where they host a family-friendly block party to celebrate cancer survivors and honor loved ones lost to the disease. Stationary cycling classes also take place at the IOP finish line. The event originated in 2019, inspired by a massive cancer fundraiser and cycling event in Ohio called Pelotonia that has raised more than $283 million for innovative cancer research, explained Hollings LOWVELO manager and cyclist Chris Winn. Hollings Cancer Center had connections to doctors and event planners involved with Pelotonia, and researchers and doctors familiar with the ride saw it as a successful model to emulate. Prior to LOWVELO’s launch, no similar fundraising ride existed here in South Carolina and Hollings worked to initiate LOWVELO in our state to address that gap. Over the first four years of the event, LOWVELO raised more than $1.7 million for lifesaving cancer research, according to Hollings Cancer Center digital marketing/ events communication specialist Kristin Lee. All proceeds directly fund cancer research at Hollings Cancer Center, the only National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center in South Carolina. LOWVELO supports a wide variety of Photos Provided cancer research projects as well as fellowships and scholarships to help train the next generation of cancer researchers. Winn said that LOWVELO is more than just a fundraiser, it’s also about “expanding awareness of what Hollings is and what it does.” Winn maintained that because MUSC Hollings Cancer Center is a state hospital, the grant writing process is very competitive and securing grants for new cutting-edge therapies can be difficult. LOWVELO channels funding to novel research that holds significant promise. LOWVELO anticipates a record-breaking year of fundraising in 2023, said Winn, although the final amount won’t be tallied until year’s end. Supporters raise money through different avenues such as Facebook and Instagram fundraisers, bake sales, student-led fundraisers, athletic clubs and more. Event sponsors, such as the Beemok Family Foundation, play an impactful role as well. Next year’s LOWVELO ride is scheduled for Nov. 2, 2024. Fundraising efforts for 2023 continue through Dec. 31. To learn more, visit