Island Vibes Jan 2024


Real Estate Sales 800.476.8444 | Vacation Rentals 888.250.8730 | Nobody knows the Charleston Coast better.® This year, we’re celebrating a big one! We’ve been helping people buy, sell, and vacation on the Isle of Palms for 35 years... and counting! Thank you to all the families and friends who have entrusted us with their most important investments and vacation memories. We are still proud to say - th Anniversary 3 NEWS Continued on Page 8 IOP Community Enrichment Plan proceeds to next step By L. C. Leach III OP city leaders are ready to pursue the next phase of the island’s Community Enrichment Plan. Right after the new year, city council will review a recent online resident survey for enhancing the island’s quality of life. Once finished, a committee of residents, business owners, city leaders and tourism experts will develop recommendations to address livability and tourism management and facilitate community enrichment on a continuous basis. “Then a taskforce will be created to determine the plan’s specifics,” said Mayor Phillip I Pounds. The College of Charleston, Explore Charleston and the Mount Pleasant consulting firm The McNair Group, are working with the city to create a specific plan based on the survey’s findings. These findings include addressing a number of priorities, such as: • Emergency response • Traffic conditions, especially in summer • Balance of rental and residential properties • Communication between city council leaders and residents • Protection of wildlife habitats • Stormwater management and drainage • Water quality, including eliminating septic tanks • Public safety • Recreational access and activities • Beach preservation • Both beach and neighborhood parking • Marina renovations “The island’s tourism industry has experienced tremendous success, and residents’ quality of life is a core component of a thriving visitor economy,” said Chris Campbell, vice president of strategy & external affairs with Explore Charleston. “There’s no better way to build the best IOP for tomorrow than to develop a community enrichment plan that engages residents’ voices as the primary driver of the process.” David McNair, founder and CEO of The McNair Group in Mount Pleasant, added that this kind of plan is crucial to develop now because of the growing demand for island property, rentals and both safety and tourism services that affect many more people than the island’s current 4,300-plus residents. “Communities across the Lowcountry are now inextricably connected,” said McNair, whose firm has assisted numerous other municipalities and communities in strategy planning and community-building. “Most of us live, work and recreate across multiple community lines, and each is charged with responsible stewardship that ensures a

This philosophy holds true for me too because I can’t believe I get paid to write about people, places and things that I love for a living! Any who, I digress, but I’ve been asked countless times how long we plan to throw these vibrant parties. In short, the answer is: as long as Island Vibes is the people’s heartbeat of the island. We are here to stay, and our word is as true as the tide. We may be on island time, but our heads are not in the sand. Happy New Year! We wish peace and prosperity to all! See you around the island! Positively yours, Zach Giroux, Managing Editor It takes a community ’m excited about Island Vibes, Isle of Palms and 2024. Okay, the word ‘excited’ doesn’t quite capture how I’m truly feeling about the upcoming year and the newspaper you’re reading digitally or holding in your hands. Just days after Christmas I was looking at the pages of Island Vibes right before they were sent to the printer. I couldn’t help thinking it takes a community of talented, passionate people to create Island Vibes. Then I thought about how our publishing community was producing a community publication. Not to sound too corny, but it made me smile and touched my heart. Bottom line, no matter what our goals or businesses might be, it will take a community of like-minded people to make it happen. Community is everything! Just like on Isle of Palms, where each island resident, business, event and now a publication that is exclusively about Isle of Palms, will help make the island strong. 4 FROM THE CREW D The pride of Isle of Palms today, tomorrow and always. Publisher’s Note Editor’s Note I O Island Vibes Vol. 2, Issue 1 January 2024 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 JIMMY CARROLL • JOHN CHITWOOD LAURA FOGARTY • MAURICE FRAZIER CLARK LEACH • COLIN MCCANDLESS PHILLIP POUNDS SALES REPRESENTATIVES ANDY BIMONTE ANDY@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM STACEY MCLOUGHLIN STACEY@ISLANDVIBESIOP.COM MAURICE FRAZIER MAURICE@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 Island Vibes is published locally by a team of independent contractors. Island Vibes 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 nward! It’s a new year and that means many things related to a fresh start, clean slate, new goals and resolutions. But for us, it’s about delivering on our promise to instill positive vibes! Last month, Island Vibes held its December issue launch party at The Refuge. The social event was a splendid success and felt like a Christmas party with family and friends. Co-workers were there too of course, yet between the good holiday food and drinks and the music it didn’t feel like work. In the words of the late, great storyteller Mark Twain, “Find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” As with publishing Island Vibes, our community is based on respect for one another combined with truthful and clear communications. This allows us to more simply find solutions when confronting difficulties and challenges. Everyone who lives on Isle of Palms loves their island. When this island community has differing opinions that lead to challenges or disagreements, if the love for this island is put first and there is transparent communication, then the road to the solution will become smoother and easier. Our publishing community is nowhere near perfect, nor do we profess to be so. But what we do know is that we respect one another, and we love publishing Island Vibes. Our love for what we do always helps us find the path to solutions. It is my hope for 2024 that through the digital and print pages of Island Vibes, coupled with everyone’s love for Isle of Palms, it will help contribute to more positivity in this community. Additionally, I hope that it will inspire honest and transparent communication that will lead to roads of solutions in times of challenges or disagreements. It’s all about the love of this island, not agendas. Everyone raise your hand or comment on our social media at www. if you think 2024 could be a good year for Isle of Palms. Don’t forget you can always send this link out to friends or family members who might want to read this publication digitally: Happy positive 2024! Bill Macchio, Publisher

Pounds. “We will hold a special meeting on Jan. 2 to swear in new members and confirm appointments.” If approved, those appointments and their spheres will include: And as the island progresses toward finding a balance between resident life and year-round vacationers, IOP City Council members will be working on several fronts that will not only directly affect the island’s quality of life, but influence factors such as growth, traffic and tourism for decades to come. “We have four council members who have been nominated for appointments to special committees, including myself,” said Mayor Phillip he new year will just be getting started before efforts will be underway to either create, alter or implement ways to move Isle of Palms forward to a future that is already arriving. 5 Council committees tasked with quality-of-life concerns By L. C. Leach III Katie Miars – Environmental Advisory Committee. IOP City Council formed this nine-member committee in 2021 to advise council in part on matters regarding ways to pursue energy conservation, Jimmy Ward – Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority. As the state’s largest public transportation provider and ranked as one of the top systems in the Southeast, CARTA operates Charleston’s public transportation system Phillip Pounds – Explore Charleston. Explore Charleston markets the greater Charleston area as an overnight destination. Currently, about 7.7 million people visit Charleston Jan Anderson – Charleston-Berkeley-Dorchester Council of Governments. CBDCOG is a regional agency whose primary objective is to help local governments develop local and regional plans and provide them with planning T help reduce island litter and pollution and protect the island’s environment, endangered species and natural resources. As people, traffic and artificial light continue to increase across the island, part of Miars’ charge will be engaging with other EAC members and with representatives from the Department of Natural Resources as necessary, to keep wildlife habitats for animals such as sea turtles as much as possible in their natural states. for the entire metro area, with a ridership of more than 4 million annually. Ward said that encouraging people to use daily bus service to and from the island is crucial to reducing the number of summer beach tourist vehicles. “I’ve been on the CARTA board now for about six years, and we have installed this Reach the Beach project where we offer free rides on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, just in the summer,” Ward said. “And my goal is to get several thousand people to use this service.” each year. EC funding is provided through public and private sources including membership dues, accommodations taxes, programs revenue and matching grants. “If appointed, my top priorities to accomplish would be to be accountable for funds spent on tourism, and how we can spend more funds specifically for IOP infrastructure or other needs,” Pounds said. and technical support to improve the quality of life in the region. “Earlier this year we saw the importance of regional coordination when we had a serious incident on front beach,” Anderson said. “Without the assistance of a dozen regional communities, we would not have resolved it successfully. I want to continue to strengthen our bonds with neighboring communities and use the resources of COG to better inform our city council.” NEWS

6 NEWS Ordinances expected to play pivotal role for island in new year Council passes nine laws in 2023 By L. C. Leach III n terms of ordinances, the new year won’t be much different than the previous one for Isle of Palms City Council. Beginning with its first meeting in January 2024, council will be tasked to not only discuss directives on unresolved issues, but also to consider all new measures with respect to the island’s long-term future. Leading the way will be the longstanding issue of short-term rental licenses, which first appeared in 2001, and most recently finished a long battle when 54.5 percent of the island’s eligible voters said no in a November referendum to an island-wide STRL cap. But the issue still must be settled by WE MAKE FINDING THE PERFECT PROPERTY A SEAMLESS PROCESS. Krista M. Swingle REALTOR® Brand Name Real Estate Charleston, SC Hugh Swingle IV Property Manager In Charge (843) 474-1200 Responsive Results Driven Hands On The Refuge ISLE OF PALMS SINCE 2016 Open 7 Days a Week 8:00 AM - 9:00 PM (843)-242-8934 1517 Palm Blvd suite a Isle of Palms, SC Steak Night Every Tuesday Live Music Every Wednesday • Lobster Night Every Sunday Weekly Events council action, most likely in the form of a new ordinance. Councilman Blair Hahn said all council members will have to set aside differing opinions on this issue to devise a workable solution. “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,” Hahn said shortly after the referendum vote. But along with STRLs is a pending noise ordinance, which has been gathering steam since spring 2023. Because Isle of Palms is growing in demand for property and day visitors, individuals and groups, such as Wild Dunes Resort, have been pressing for regulations to keep noise at a minimum. “The current IOP noise ordinance is very outdated and not relevant to the ever-changing demographics of the city,” said Terri Haack, designated representative of Wild Dunes, LLC. “The ordinance must be written with objective measurements and must be fair to all residents and business owners…and must be in place before spring break and the summer season.” The problem, however, is determining how much noise is bothersome. “There’s a lot of controversy on council about the best thing to do,” Hahn said. “We’re working on setting decibel levels, but no one knows what the acceptable decibel level is. So the council is going to have to pick a level and see how it works.” Hopefully, lessons learned from the past year can be applied to 2024 as a guiding force, such as from these nine ordinances, passed during 2023 to: • Clarify that statements of candidacy for mayor and council members can be filed at city hall. • Authorize entering into an intergovernmental agreement related to the South Carolina Local Revenue Services, to participate in local revenue service programs, to execute participant program supplements and other matters. • Clarify position of city attorney and to include provisions for the appointment of city prosecutor. • Adopt a budget for fiscal year beginning July 1, 2023, and ending June 30, 2024. • Increase the short-term rental business license base fee by $100. • Include regulations for large gatherings on public property, including the beach and beach access paths. • Increase the number of resident parking permits issued to part-time resident owners from two to four. • Regulate e-bikes and battery-assisted motorized skateboards on the beach. • Provide regulations for dogs biting, chasing or attacking. I

7 OPINION o all beach lovers, this past Sunday’s weather event was a totally unexpected perfect storm. I say this because as the moon grows larger, the tides rise accordingly, plus we had a nor’easter passing by with wind speeds of 3550 mph blowing onshore with a very rough surf. It came at a time when our already fragile beaches had already been damaged from a previous storm back in August. The city rightfully used our 1 percent vacation rental beach renourishment tax to start emergency dune building in the most endangered three blocks nearest Breach Inlet. The city has been working with the Army Corps of Engineers to use sand dredged from the Intracoastal Waterway for a highly-anticipated beach renourishment by the Army Corps of Engineers all along Ocean Boulevard. As a lifelong resident, I walk the beaches at least once a week and always after a storm event, while at the same time taking pictures. This Sunday after the storm broke and the tide was mostly out, I walked to Breach Inlet. After well more than 50 years of walking the beach, I saw more damage to the southwestern end of the island than I’ve ever seen before except for Hurricane Hugo. The dunes were wiped flat, not to mention that the tide was 12.52’ and flooded basically the whole island. This Sunday’s tide was not hurricane-driven, just a strong nor’easter with high winds on a high tide causThe Perfect Storm Recent flooding raises beach erosion concerns By Jimmy Carroll, former Isle of Palms mayor T ing the fourth highest tide recorded in Charleston at 9.62’. But what set this storm apart was that most of the Ocean Boulevard homes have been developed since Hugo and many have in-ground pools. As mentioned above, the city rightfully used the beach renourishment rental tax money to strengthen the areas most impacted, from 100 Ocean to 3rd Avenue. On Sunday, I counted at least seven pools standing out on the beach, which were in a condition that I would consider totaled. The most amazing thing I saw was a human-built sea wall, standing way out in front of the next-door neighbors. I took pictures of this spot back in late August and there was no sea wall, as one would not have been permitted. What this seawall did was exacerbate the washing out of sand on either side. OCRM (Ocean & Coastal Resource Management) would never have allowed such a wall. We must realize that living on the coast there is a constant ebb and flow of currents and a constant change in beach profiles. The most dynamic are those on inlets, and buyers need to be aware. I encourage everyone to Google Orrin Pilkey, a coastal geologist who advised the Isle of Palms city to not build close to the ocean due to longshore drift and sandbar migration. Hopefully, the Army Corps project will give everyone that break with their upcoming project starting in January and February. I feel for everyone affected, and please let’s all work together in protecting our beaches. Photos Provided.

8 NEWS From Page 3 FOR OUR IOP LOCATION EMAIL US AT PAPISTAQUERIA@GMAIL.COM COME SEE US AT PAPI’S TAQUERIA! (843) 926-7274 • 1012 Ocean Blvd Isle of Palms, SC FOR OUR FOOD TRUCK TEXT US AT 843-214-6299 Follow Us @cachitaskitchen on Instagram THANK YOU MOUNT PLEASANT FOR VOTING US BEST FOOD TRUCK! 2024 ® vibrant and sustainable foundation for today and for those generations to come.” IOP city leaders and professionals have already been working for years on parts of the plan. For example, the new $26.2 million Forest Trails Wastewater Treatment Plant is due to begin operations in January 2024. The plant, whose first phase began in 2014, is not only built to last for 50-70 years, but expected to eventually eliminate the need for island septic tanks through its initial handling of 1.4 million gallons of effluent per day. Other plan priorities either underway or on the horizon include: • Beach and neighborhood parking. In the not-so-distant past of the 1980s, IOP parking in any form was almost akin to come one, come all, with plenty to go around. Now, measures are underway to handle the all, which at the height of summer tourist season amounts to 12,000-20,000 visitors per day, and is likely to increase. Daily bus service, provided by the Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority, is one potential solution to eliminating the need for personal visitor vehicles by efficiently linking people, jobs and communities to the island. • Balance of rental and residential properties. What might be considered the island’s number one concern and topic for all of 2023 and parts of 2022, short-term rentals underwent a lengthy back-and-forth battle between proponents who favored an island-wide STR license cap and those wanting an ordinance that would permit a cap in areas where STRs are already low. The island-wide cap measure was defeated in the Nov. 7 city elections, meaning that the likelihood of city council establishing a balanced ordinance for STR licenses will likely happen in 2024. • Stormwater management and drainage. The city began a longterm project in 2017 to improve stormwater and tidal drainage across the entire island. Work has progressed up to Phase 3 and includes a Master Plan for Phase 4, estimated to cost $46.3 million, to eliminate standing water in residential neighborhoods and other key areas. “Drainage will continue to be a huge focus for council,” said City Councilman Jimmy Ward prior to the election. “I’ve been involved since the beginning, and would like to help see this project completed.” • Protection of wildlife habitats. Probably the one enrichment priority with the least amount of disagreement, IOP wildlife habitat protection has been in place for some time to keep the island’s ecosystems as intact as possible. Working together with the Department of Natural Resources, Island Turtle Teams patrol the beaches of both Isle of Palms and Sullivan’s Island to check for turtle tracks, monitor nests and determine if nests are located in places where incoming tides and storm surges won’t wash over them. Local ordinances are also in place to prohibit artificial lights that can be seen at night from the beach, to keep nesting females and hatchlings safe from predators and to help them reach the sea by moonlight. Campbell said that while the travel and hospitality industries are vital to the island’s identity and economy, it will be just as important looking ahead to “minimize adverse impacts of tourism on residents’ livability and the island’s overall well-being.” Which is a far cry from 1897 when the idea of community enrichment on Isle of Palms meant putting up a public amusement and beach resort. But it’s much closer to 1987 when the still small resort community was on the edge of a countywide boom that currently has no end in sight. And Pounds added that once a plan of action is determined by the community taskforce to address all concerns, it could take years to complete some of the items connected to the survey. “Until we see the end product of the Community Enrichment Plan, I’m not sure what changes will be made short or long term,” he said. “My hope is we will have some tangible items we can tackle very quickly. And if there are specific tasks that come out of this work that improves the resident and visitor experience, that’s a win-win for all involved.” 9 BUSINESS VISIT US FOR ALLYOUR PET NEEDS! MOUNT PLEASANT @WGBMtPleasant woofgangbakery_mtp Personalized Gourmet Treats Pet Nutrition Premium Grooming Services Exclusive 1055 Johnnie Dodds Blvd, Mount Pleasant, SC 29464 • 843-388-5167 he IOP LENS (Law Enforcement Neighborhood Support) program is thrilled to introduce a new LENS Leadership Series celebrating the richness of in-person conversations and the ongoing journey of learning together. Join them at the Isle of Palms Exchange Club at 201 Palm Blvd. starting on Jan. 9 at 6 p.m. for each of these exclusive events, which will be held on the first Tuesday of each quarter. They will be capping attendance at 60 people to keep it an intimate gathering. LENS will be bringing in a diverse group of inspiring individuals to share their expertise and stories with attendees as part of a forum for visionary leaders to connect and converse. Our community is home to an impressive roster of leaders, both those currently shaping our industries and those with a wealth of experience to share. LENS is excited to offer a platform for these voices to connect with our community, exchanging knowledge and sparking conversations. Each session will feature insightful presentations and encourage dialogue among all who participate in the speaker engagements. Hartnett to kick off speaker series Former Congressman and State Legislator Tommy Hartnett will be the inaugural speaker to launch the leadership series. Hartnett will share inside knowledge of what it was like to be an elected representative from the Charleston area serving in the South Carolina General Assembly and representing the 1st Congressional District in Washington D.C. In addition, he will offer humorous anecdotes of working with some of South Carolina’s and the nation’s most colorful characters. Sherry Welsh, a former Bosch executive and current leadership consultant and coach, will be providing her expertise to the LENS team as part of this effort. “Providing a forum such as this for all ages and experiences to come together and learn and share with one another is something I am honored to be a part of,” stated Welsh. LENS endowment oversight committee member and retired entrepreneur Jim Thompson commented, “It will be exciting to hear from local talented leaders: historians, authors, industry, educators, public servants and others, to add to our Lowcountry quality of life through these sessions. Stay tuned for future announcements. This is going to be fun!” IOP LENS is a program of the community service committee of the IOP Exchange Club. Established in 2022, IOP LENS stands as a beacon of hope and support, offering vital assistance to island families and officers facing monetary hardships related to health matters, abuse or challenging circumstances. This heartfelt commitment extends to education scholarships benefiting school-age children and spouses of law enforcement officers, all while reinforcing the community's fabric through sponsorship of events that promote safety, education and joyful experiences for island families. IOP LENS works in tandem with the IOP Police Department, strengthening the bonds between law enforcement and neighborhoods. Through its initiatives, IOP LENS strives to create a safer, more harmonious Isle of Palms. For more information on the leadership speaker series, visit LENS program to host new leadership series at IOP Exchange Club By Colin McCandless T

Warm regards, Ryan Buckhannon President, IOP Chamber of Commerce Chamber Notes Let’s usher 2024 with enthusiasm and unit By Ryan Buckhannon President, IOP Chamber of Commerce 10 BUSINESS As the president of the Isle of Palms Chamber of Commerce, it's my pleasure to extend a heartfelt Happy New Year to each of you in our vibrant community. The onset of 2024 brings a new year and a fresh opportunity for growth, connection and prosperity for our beloved Isle of Palms. Looking ahead, we have an exciting calendar brimming with events and initiatives. Our kickoff for the year sets the tone: the first chamber meeting is scheduled for Jan. 23 at noon at the Isle of Palms Exchange Club. This gathering isn't just a meeting; it's a beacon of inspiration featuring a distinguished guest speaker, Chad Holbrook, the head coach of the College of Charleston baseball program. Coach Holbrook's presence is a testament to our commitment to excellence and community upliftment. With over two decades of coaching, contributing to national championship teams and making significant marks in the NCAA, his experience and insights are invaluable. His extraordinary record—eight NCAA Super Regionals, six College World Series, five national championship appearances and two national championships—makes him a paragon in the NCAA coaching arena. We invite each of you to join us in welcoming coach Holbrook. His words promise to be more than just encouraging; they are set to ignite a spirit of positivity and determination, aligning perfectly with our vision for 2024. As we enter this new year, let's unite in our efforts to enhance our community's well-being and prosperity. Together, we can make the Isle of Palms a beautiful place to live and visit and a beacon of community strength and collaboration. Here's to a prosperous, fulfilling and joyful 2024! LOCAL SINCE 1989 Real Estate 800.476.8444 Vacation Rentals 888.250.8730 . . . FEATURED LISTING Tidewater Villas H102 2 Beds, 2 Baths, 1137 Ft2 Offered for $1,198,000 This lovely, first floor oceanfront condominium is located in Tidewater Villas, nestled in the heart of Wild Dunes. Just steps from the door are miles of pristine beach and the Tidewater community pool. Enjoy ocean views and salty breezes from a large screened porch. This villa is a busy vacation rental, with 2023 gross income at $79K. It’s sold furnished, so move right in or continue to rent this oceanfront gem. 5 Commons Court, Wild Dunes 4 Beds, 4 Baths, 2572 Ft2 | $1,549,000 B111 Shipwatch Villas, Wild Dunes 3 Beds, 3 Baths, 1322 Ft2 | $1,395,000

community? I believe, as with any experience, it’s what you make it. If you want it to feel like a community, you get involved and attend the various offerings of interest and make the effort to get to know those in our city. If you prefer to keep to yourself, that works too, but it doesn’t mean our city has “lost that community feel.” I recently saw a definition of community as a: feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests and goals. I challenge you in the new year to renew our commitment to our city and become more involved with the events and programs that are available to us and our neighbors. Thank you for the opportunity to serve! See you around the island. Phillip Pounds, Mayor IOP 843-252-5359 11 Mayor’s Message New year means renewed committment By Philip Pounds Mayor, Isle of Palms CIVICS | Explore The Best of Front Beach s we bid farewell to the year behind us and embrace the possibilities of the new one ahead, I extend my warmest wishes for a joyous new year! May 2024 bring prosperity, unity and moments of shared success to our vibrant community. Let’s continue working together towards a future filled with opportunities, resilience and the collective strength that defines Isle of Palms. One of the last decisions this council made was to approve a significant investment in our employees. City council approved raises for all staff based on a recent wage and compensation study with a particular focus on our public safety teams. Many of our staff have faced the headwinds of inflation, long commutes to serve our community and high housing costs, and have been struggling to make ends meet. I’m thankful our council took the bold action it did to show those that serve us just how important they are to our community. The past two years we have made significant progress on many fronts, and I’m looking forward to continuing that progress. To align your newly sworn-in council to our strategic objectives, we started the year in an offsite meeting to agree on what success will look like and received orientation training from the Municipal Association of South Carolina (MASC). MASC was formed in 1930, and they represent and serve the state’s 271 incorporated municipalities. The Association is dedicated to the principle of its founding members: to offer the services, programs and tools that will give municipal officials the knowledge, experience and tools for enabling the most efficient and effective operation of their municipalities in the complex world of municipal government. I felt it was critical to schedule this session right after inauguration to help set the foundation for a successful, unified team all focused on the same strategic objectives. Prior to our recent election, there was much talk about our community and what it has become. I have talked to several new residents that have moved here in the past few years that have been pleasantly surprised at the “community feel” of our island. They attributed that feeling to the special events the city sponsors, the rec center offerings and the number of full-time residents. I have also talked to some residents that bemoan the loss of our island’s “community feel.” How do residents living on our island have such differing views of our A

CRIME Higher Than the Tide This month saw a “high” number of 23 drug violations. The ‘Green Thumb Gang’ (mostly caught with marijuana) keeps IOP on their toes. Note to self: start a gardening club? But wait, there’s more! A couple of adventurous souls decided to go for the “Breaking Bad” experience with meth. Remember folks, Isle of Palms is for sunbathing, not “Breaking Bad” reenactments. Spoiler alert: real life doesn’t have scriptwriters to save you! The Notorious Schedule IV Maverick One individual truly outdid themselves, not only with a repeat performance of Schedule IV narcotics possession but also starring in a “John Wick” moment with an automatic pistol. Discharging a firearm in the city? Big no-no! Our action hero is now starring in their own police procedural drama. Driving Miss Crazy The number of driving-while-suspended incidents dipped slightly to 24. Let’s call it a win, shall we? It’s like musical chairs, but with driver’s licenses. DUIs Take the Lead Buckle up for a 63 percent surge in DUIs, totaling 11, mostly starring first-time performers. And guess what? Six of them weren’t even old enough to legally sip a beer. Maybe they thought DUI stood for “Driving Under Immaturity?” Underage Party Bus Adding to our cast are eight underage individuals caught with alcohol. Combined with our underage DUI artists, we’re just one person short of fielding an Isle of Palms rugby team. Scouting for that final player happens next month—stay tuned! Remember the IOP Rule of Three Don’t drive if you shouldn’t, don’t possess if it’s illegal and definitely, definitely don’t go all Hollywood with banned guns in the city. Keep that action on the big screen and off our streets! Stick to beach volleyball for your action needs! 12 By Detective Dusty Dunes THE NOT-SO-USUAL SUSPECTS (11/16/23 - 12/12/23) Remember, this is a humorous take on the police report and is not intended to make light of the serious nature of these offenses. Always stay safe and within the law, folks! POLICE BLOTTER Our Service Areas: Charlotte, NC • Boston, MA • Myrtle Beach, SC • Charleston, SC Portsmouth, NH • Greenville, SC • Asheville, NC Sold the most expensive South Carolina business in 2023! ATLANTICBUSINESSBROKERS.COM | 800-366-1627 | CJOSEPH@ATLANTICBUSINESSBROKERS.COM Confidential & Private Transactions Negotiating Between Buyer and Seller A Consultative Approach using our decades of experience Negotiating Between Buyer and Seller Navigating the process from attorneys, lenders all parties involved.

13 CRIME Double Duty IOP policeman an officer by day, DJ by night By Laura Fogarty REALTOR sarah henderson If you are interested in buying, or selling your home, I'd like to speak with you to discuss how I can help you achieve your real estate goals! @katherinecoxco (843) 708-5098 SARAH HENDERSON REAL ESTATE AGENT t is a good feeling to come over the Connector with the Atlantic Ocean in sight and water all around on my way to work, but there is no greater feeling than seeing my kids sit in daddy’s police car,” observed Isle of Palms Police Department officer Kevin Barattini. “I get chills thinking about it. There is no greater gift.” Barattini brought his gifts for communicating and building relationships to South Carolina from New York in 2019. Barattini began his work as a public servant at age 18 as a volunteer fireman. He eventually made captain in Ocean Beach, New York, before becoming an EMT paramedic. Barattini loved his work as a fireman but feels becoming a police officer has always been his true calling. He worked for the Charleston County Aviation Authority Police Department before joining the IOPPD, a decision that he said came easy. “The people here are happy. I park my car and patrol on foot, stopping in shops and restaurants and building those relationships that are so important.” Barattini is quick to praise the relationships he has built working on the Isle of Palms. He truly enjoys the small town feel of a 22-person agency and the positive environment created by Chief Kevin Cornett. “The chief’s door is always open. It’s where we feel free to stop; it’s where we eat,” said Barattini. Policeman by day and a DJ by night, Barattini began his career as a DJ in Long Island, New York, at age 16. I Working from his parents’ house, using their landline as his business phone, Barattini worked college gigs, church events and weddings and grew a thriving business. Barattini Productions now serves limited engagements at wedding venues and Uptown Social. Barattini’s wife of 14 years, Nicole, teaches special education at Cario Middle School. Their twins, Dominic and Luciana, will turn 7 in February. Completing this charming little family is their newest addition, a yellow lab named Luke Bentley. Barattini beamed, “We couldn’t be happier to be here.” Photos Provided. “

Guide to IOP Real Estate Discover more of Isle of Palms • Isle of Palms Agents • Custom Homes On the Island • Real Estate Podcast showcasing IOP • Top Ten Isle Of Palms Homes Sold Scan or visit THE-WINDJAMMER.COM | 843-242-8121 (843)-885-7009 The pride of Isle of Palms today, tomorrow and always. Want to know more about Mount Pleasant Magazine? SCAN TO READ 2024 ® BEST OF THE BEST – BRIDAL – YEAR IN REVIEW *Voted by Readers, Earned by Experts JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2024 DANIEL ISLAND | ISLE OF PALMS | SULLIVAN’S ISLAND 1 2 5 3

Showcase your business on this map! Email, Bill Macchio at D , DINGHYIOP.COM 843.242.8310 COME SEE US AT PAPI’S TAQUERIA! (843) 926-7274 1012 OCEAN BLVD ISLE OF PALMS, SC Point | Scan SAVE MONEY Custom Insurance Protection for Home | Auto | Boat | Business | Flood & More Visit us at or call us at 843-252-0840 ISLANDREALTY.COM 866.380.3983 The Rental Experts! 4 6 7

courts. We’ve done a lot of work on the dog park. We very much appreciate it on top of all the festivals and festivities and farmers markets and everything else you guys do.” Ferrell in turn thanked city council for their support and helping the center provide these facilities to the community. “We are so happy to be here and able to provide all these outdoor opportunities for our residents,” she said. “And to visitors alike.” The rec center Fitness Court is just the second to be established in South Carolina, and more are scheduled to open in 2024. NFC’s goal is to fund a free outdoor fitness court within a 10-minute bike ride of every American by 2030. visit all eight Alaskan national parks in 21 days. “That to me was a trip of a lifetime,” asserted Nagel. It was also the state where Nagel saw her favorite national park—the wild, rugged and scenic 13.2-million-acre Wrangell St. Elias, the largest of the national parks. “It was very remote, and I think I just got overwhelmed by the size,” recounted Nagel. However, she added, “for such a big park it was accessible. So you could hike a glacier.” The odyssey also produced hidden gems like California’s 26,000-acre Pinnacles National Park, where she glimpsed 15 California condors, a critically-endangered species. Then there were the underrated parks that shattered her presumptions, such as the Gateway Arch in St. Louis. Part of the reason Nagel enjoys telling her story, which she has shared at libraries and with various women’s organizations, is that national parks are fairly inexpensive, beautiful places to learn about who we are as a nation. It’s been a poignant and enriching experience. “I’ve cried at every park,” reflected Nagel. “I’m just so proud of this country.” The National Park Service manages 428 individual sites, including monuments, battlefields and historic sites, 63 of which are designated as national parks. “The 63 national parks are the crown jewels of the national park system,” stated Nagel. “Those parks belong to you and I.” Although Nagel is married with three grown children, this was something she desired to do on her own. “This is for me,” she said. Nagel scheduled her trip itineraries in the off-season when schools were in session and planned them in segments to maximize efficiency, knocking out several parks over a week to 10 days. She utilized her own planning except for Alaska, a state which presents unique logistical challenges. In 2019 she booked a trip through Anchorage Tours to 16 SPORTS The ribbon cutting ceremony held Dec. 15. Recreation Center’s new outdoor gym a ‘fitness hub’ By Colin McCandless Mission Accomplished: Resident achieves national parks bucket list goal By Colin McCandless Civic leaders, recreation staff, first responders and community members gathered at the IOP Recreation Center Dec. 15 to attend a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the opening of the facility’s new outdoor gym, the Fitness Court. The court is a capital project of the National Fitness Campaign (NFC), an interdisciplinary team of partnership builders, designers and consultants on a mission to improve health and wellness outcomes in America. NFC partners with municipalities, schools and sponsors nationwide to plan, build and fund healthy communities and provide free access to world class fitness. The City of Isle of Palms, along with other municipalities across the country, was awarded a $30,000 grant from NFC to help fund the Isle of Palms resident Christine Nagel didn’t realize when she visited Acadia National Park in 2012 that it would eventually spur a personal bucket list aspiration of seeing all 63 of America’s national parks. Candidly, she just wanted to tour Maine and eat some lobster. “I didn’t have it in my head at the time that I would go on this sojourn,” recalled Nagel. But over the course of eight years of solo travels Nagel would continually build and expand upon that first national park experience, culminating in C installation of the Fitness Court. City council matched the NFC grant to help bring the free workout area to the rec center. The Fitness Court is an adaptive body weight circuit training system featuring seven movements for everyday health: core, squat, push, lunge, pull, agility and bend. It is designed to provide a full body workout rotating through all seven zones. A participant will find exercises on the sides of the back walls, along with muscle groups worked. The Fitness Court also comes with a free app that will provide a coach at your fingertips. It includes full workouts for all levels of fitness or movements for each station. Participants can also take part in challenges with other fitness court users across the country. NFC patented the court design and developed the app that people can download to augment the experience. “This project was important to me and staff to allow the recreation department to be the fitness hub of the island. Giving everyone an opportunity for fitness,” said IOP Rec Department director Karrie Ferrell. “The Fitness Court is designed for all age groups and all levels of fitness. It can be a quick workout for a busy fitness enthusiast or designed for someone starting their fitness journey.” Ferrell added that once the weather warms up, rec center staff will offer classes and programs at the Fitness Court. “There’s been a lot going on at the rec center in the last year or so,” noted Mayor Phillip Pounds, who introduced Ferrell at the ribbon cutting and thanked her and the rec center staff for their leadership and commitment to improving and enhancing rec center amenities. “We just did a ribbon cutting during the spring for the pickleball courts and the newly-refurbished basketball I her October 2023 trip to see the Gateway Arch and Hot Springs national parks, numbers 62 and 63, respectively. Nagel, a retired Corning Inc. executive and U.S. Army veteran who bought a home on IOP in 2004 and splits her time between here and the Finger Lakes in upstate New York, appreciates how welcoming people are on the island. “I just love it down here. People are so good to me even though I’m a transient,” she said. Prior to her milestone-setting adventure, Nagel had been no stranger to traversing the globe. As plant manager and later worldwide manufacturing and engineering manager for Corning, she frequently traveled abroad to Asia, Europe and South Africa. When she retired, Nagel yearned to see more of this country. She chose the national parks as her ambitious target destinations. Nagel at Channel Islands National Park in California. Nagel in front of the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

Exchange Club appreciates and welcomes all the support from the community and looks forward to an amazing and fun afternoon/evening benefiting a fantastic cause. See you on March 9. n March 9, 2024, the IOP Exchange Club will be hosting their annual Bud and Cecily Stack Memorial Oyster Roast fundraiser on the scenic banks of Hamlin Creek. In addition to the delicious single select oysters, chili and hotdogs, guests can also enjoy live music and beautiful panoramic views of the water. The event will also feature an online silent auction including several local items donated by generous businesses in the IOP and Charleston area. Tickets will be available online at the IOP Exchange Club website iopex17 FOOD & BEV Restaurant Review The Refuge gets a makeover By Maurice J. Frazier IOP Exchange Club to host annual oyster roast March 9, 2-4 p.m. and 4:30-6:30 p.m. In Memory of Bud and Cecily Stack By Robbie Berg Photos Provided By f you are a Food Network fan or watch any restaurant-based shows then you may have heard of “Restaurant Impossible,” “Bar Rescue” or “Restaurant Redemption.” These shows focus on elevating struggling restaurants that need assistance and guidance. Now The Refuge didn’t go on TV, but the establishment did undergo a transformation like no other. Owner Patty Lamone and her staff rolled up their sleeves and changed their entire approach, starting with the décor, the vibe of the space and a menu overhaul. The Refuge opened back in 2017. During that time, there were three owners: Patty, her sister and a third-party patron. Unfortunately, their third owner passed away within a year of opening, leaving Patty and her sister to run the show. Working in a family-owned business can be stressful. Tensions can be high because operations are in play. Last year, Patty bought out her sister, making her the sole owner of The Refuge, and the restaurant is running how she envisioned it. “The space we created in here is totally different than where we started. I want the community to come back and give us another try. I had a bad rap for many years, and I have changed…The Refuge is here for the community,” stated Lamone. When you revisit The Refuge, you will see it feels different. This family-owned business has created a spot for the community to relax and unwind while eating some amazing food. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, The Refuge has provided its patrons with the opportunity to stop in and enjoy their delectable offerings regardless of the time of day. “Everything in here is brand new. From the light fixtures to new equipment in the kitchen, brand-new kitchen staff—and even the menu has changed. We kept some of the classics, but everything has changed,” explained Lamone. In this situation, the change was needed and it’s paying off. Lamone emphasized that some of the best sellers on the menu remain such as the fish and chips, the seared salmon entree and the crab cakes, but she has added other items that are well worth a try. Lamone’s creativity didn’t stop at the restaurant; they offer a coffee bar lounge area as well. The community-minded space was created for evening social gatherings where guests can entertain themselves. “I have so many ideas from poetry readings, bourbon tastings, to paint and sip. I’m open to suggestions if anyone has any. I just want this space to provide a cool spot for the evenings so people can come and enjoy,” she said. The Refuge is part of IOP’s restaurant profile. Don’t let any past experience prevent you from returning to check out its fresh new take. The Refuge is back in an innovative way, serving up scrumptious dishes that will have you coming back for more. I O after mid-January. This year there will be two separate times: 2-4 p.m. and 4:30-6:30 p.m. Your ticket grants you access to either of those event times. The club is returning to its original format of typical stand-up oyster tables for both times. If seating is needed, two to three tables will be available. Beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages will also be available for purchase. There is an incentive to buying your tickets early, so don’t wait if you want a price break! January: $50 per person February: $60 per person March: $70 per person This fundraiser benefits the Exchange Club’s Youth/Scholarship Programs of service committees. Each year, the money raised through this event is used to fund scholarships given to rising high school seniors. In 2023, $21,000 was awarded among 11 students. Dollars raised further serve Lowcountry youth through sports team sponsorships, Boy Scouts awards dinners, ecological tours and more. The IOP

18 MUSIC WELCOME TO 3207 PALM BLVD. New renovations just completed, which includes new kitchen and bathrooms plus outside pool & hot tub with gazebo and fireplace! This family beach home is the perfect combination of luxury and comfort with ample open spaces for either lounging poolside or enjoying the ocean views from the rooftop deck. The architectural details and windows galore make it a bright and airy home. Vacationing in this spot is one indulgence that you’ll never regret so go ahead and spoil yourself in this amazing home that is one of the best on the Isle of Palms. The beach access path is right across the street, including a handicap accessible path just 50 yards away! A convenient elevator goes to each floor except roof top. 843-886-9600 | J A N U A R Y The Dinghy IOP Doug Walters When: 1/1 from 6-9 p.m. Award-winning guitarist and celebrated vocalist Doug Walters performs Americana, blues and rock hits from the ‘60s to today. Jeff Bateman Duo When: 1/2,1/9,1/16,1/23,1/30 from 7-10 p.m. The Malin Wagnon Trio When: 1/3,1/10,1/17,1/24,1/31 from 6-9 p.m. Enjoy listening to the sounds of local favorite Malin Wagnon. Derek Cribb When: 1/4,1/11,1/18 from 6-9 p.m. and 1/20 7-10 p.m. Derek Cribb plays a variety of popular songs and genres from reggae to Top 40 and alternative rock. Dave Landeo When: 1/5 from 7-10 p.m. and 1/14,1/28 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Singer, songwriter and guitarist Dave Landeo covers classics, performs originals and entertains audiences with his unique style and powerful stage presence. Gracious Day When: 1/6,1/13,1/20,1/27 from 3-6 p.m. Husband and wife duo Gracious Day perform “country music in all its glory.” Abbey Elmore Band When: 1/6 from 7-10 p.m. Fronted by singer-songwriter Abbey Elmore, the Abbey Elmore Band blends indie pop and soulful rock in their original music and unique covers of classic and pop hits. Bare Bones When: 1/7,1/28 from 3-6 p.m. Mel Washington When: 1/07,1/21 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Mel Washington uniquely blends Americana, roots, rock, country, folk and other genres in what is often described as a soulful Southern sound. Cooper River Band When: 1/12,1/26 from 7-10 p.m. Playing something for everyone, Cooper River Band puts the party in ‘party band.’ Darren Deese When: 1/19 from 7-10 p.m. Talented country singer Darren Deese brings as much energy as he does vocals when performing his original music and covers. Chewbacky When: 1/13,1/27 from 7-10 p.m. Known as Charleston’s ‘80s yacht funk jamgrass band, Chewbacky fuses Southern charm with eclectic jams to get the party started and keep it going. IOPizza Co. Alyce Drive When: 1/20 Male-female rock duo Alyce Drive makes its coastal debut to bring their “psychedelic mountain folk rock vibes to the beach.” Sunshine Nights When: 1/25 from 6-9 p.m. Blending the old with the new, Sunshine Nights combines indie folk, blues and “a tinge of traditional jazz influence” in their charming and memorable sounds.