South Carolina Focus

SC Focus is a regular feature of South Carolina Public Radio.  As its name suggests, the segment focuses on the Palmetto State and its people.  It covers a wide variety of subjects, from South Carolina's war veterans to scientists, musicians and other topics, both serious and whimsical.  SC Focus can be heard at various times throughout the week during our news program on all South Carolina Public Radio stations.

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Drink Small
musicmaker.org

  He was born in Bishopville but has resided in Columbia since 1955, entertaining thousands of audiences with his mix of humor and blues (and more) music. He’s one of a kind. He’s Drink Small, the “Blues Doctor.” The uniqueness that has made him a state treasure has now gone national. After six decades, numerous albums and travels around the country and the world, the National Endowment of the Arts has named Small a National Heritage Fellow, its most prestigious award in the folk arts. At a celebration in Small’s honor by the City of Columbia and the S.C. Arts Commission, we hear the Blues Doctor rouse an admiring and appreciative crowd with his music and the humorous sayings he calls “Drink-isms.”


  The number of women’s colleges has declined severely over the past 50 years, from 230 to 45. A variety of causes is blamed, from more acceptance at coed colleges to some being located in small, remote towns. Beth Dinndorf, president of Columbia College, tells how her school has defied the trend and talks about how women’s colleges can compete and stay relevant in the 21st century. Columbia College student Laura Mauer tells us that she doesn’t miss the distractions of men on campus and lists some of the advantages that she sees in women’s colleges.


A coyote
ForestWander.com

  Wildlife does not recognize borders, and so in 1978, a non-native species, welcomed or not, moved into the Palmetto State – the coyote. It has not only caused problems for hunters ( where it has affected the deer population) and livestock farmers (where it preys on cattle, goats and more), but also has moved into cities, causing concerns among people not used to seeing these wild predators. Jay Butfiloski of the S.C. Dept. of Natural Resources gives advice about how to deal with these furry beasts, whether it’s trapping or hunting in rural areas, or making urban settings less hospitable for them.


  It’s National Farmer’s Market Week, and BetterDoctor.com, an online consumer health site, has named the South Carolina state Farmer’s Market the number 5 community-oriented farmer’s market in the nation. We talk with market Manager Brad Boozer and vendor Jason McCarter about what makes the market a top 5 market, and how it attracts wholesalers from as far away as New York to the Midlands of South Carolina to buy produce.


SC Drought Status

Jul 29, 2015

Russ Mckinney discusses how this summer's heat has effected the drought status in all counties of South Carolina.

Russ McKinney
South Carolina Public Radio

Russ McKinney takes a look at the end of an era in South Carolina with the abolition of the S. C. State Budget and Control Board.


  As thousands watched, the Confederate battle flag was lowered from beside the Confederate soldier monument on the State House grounds for the last time Friday, July 10. It was presented to the South Carolina Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum, where it eventually will be exhibited. Relic Room Director Allen Roberson talks about the flag and the museum’s intentions to exhibit it appropriately after a thoughtful plan is formed.


  [Broadcast Friday, July 10, 2015] - This is breaking news coverage from South Carolina ETV Radio—South Carolina Public Radio: the removal of the Confederate battle flag from the grounds of the State House. I’m Beryl Dakers with historian Dr. Walter Edgar. Yesterday afternoon, Gov. Nikki Haley signed into law a bill approved by the legislature to remove this symbol from a memorial to the Confederate dead and place it in the Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum. Final passage of the bill came early Thursday morning.

Listen to archived report:


The Confederate battle flag on the grounds of the South Carolina State House, July 9, 2015.
Jim Covington

  In an historic move, the South Carolina House of Representatives early Thursday morning followed the Senate’s vote with its own vote to take down the Confederate battle flag from the State House grounds. Several dozen people braved the noonday sun of the capital grounds Thursday to take pictures, be witnesses to history and soak up the atmosphere in anticipation of the flag’s removal. A number of them reflected on the flag and its meaning, and gave their opinions of the historic event.


  One of the most iconic marketing images in American history is the classic Coca Cola bottle. The familiar design turns 100 years old this year. But most folks don’t know that that familiarity was helped along by the millions of these bottles that were made in Laurens, S.C.


  People from all walks of life lined up for hours on Friday, June 26 for the funeral of state Sen. Clementa Pinckney. The senator also was the beloved pastor of Charleston’s historic Emanuel AME Church, where the shooting of nine people at a Bible study the week before shocked the nation. Among those in the line was SCETV President and CEO Linda O’Bryon, who met and interviewed the Rev. Dr. Bill McGill, pastor of Imani Baptist Temple in Fort Wayne, Indiana, as they stood waiting to be admitted to the arena where the funeral was held. McGill shared his thoughts on the occasion, and why he felt its importance compelled him to make the long journey to be in attendance.


  This podcast is part five of recorded coverage of the funeral of South Carolina Senator Clementa Pinckney, June 26, 2015. Sen. Pinckney was pastor of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC. He and eight members of his congregation were fatally shot along in a mass killing during evening bible study on Wednesday, June 17, 2015.

The funeral was broadcast live from the TD Arena at the College of Charleston, anchored by ETV's Beryl Dakers with Dr. Walter Edgar, professor emeritus of Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina, and ETV Radio's Russ McKinney. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy.


  This podcast is part four of recorded coverage of the funeral of South Carolina Senator Clementa Pinckney, June 26, 2015. Sen. Pinckney was pastor of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC. He and eight members of his congregation were fatally shot along in a mass killing during evening bible study on Wednesday, June 17, 2015. 

The funeral was broadcast live from the TD Arena at the College of Charleston, anchored by ETV's Beryl Dakers with Dr. Walter Edgar, professor emeritus of Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina, and ETV Radio's Russ McKinney. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy.


   This is podcast is part three of recorded coverage of the funeral of South Carolina Senator Clementa Pinckney, June 26, 2015. Sen. Pinckney was pastor of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC. He and eight members of his congregation were fatally shot along in a mass killing during evening bible study on Wednesday, June 17, 2015.

The funeral was broadcast live from the TD Arena at the College of Charleston, anchored by ETV's Beryl Dakers with Dr. Walter Edgar, professor emeritus of Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina, and ETV Radio's Russ McKinney. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy.


This is podcast is part two of recorded coverage of the funeral of South Carolina Senator Clementa Pinckney, June 26, 2015. Sen. Pinckney was pastor of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC. He and eight members of his congregation were fatally shot along in a mass killing during evening bible study on Wednesday, June 17, 2015.

The funeral was broadcast live from the TD Arena at the College of Charleston, anchored by ETV's Beryl Dakers with Dr. Walter Edgar, professor emeritus of Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina, and ETV Radio's Russ McKinney. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy.


  This is podcast is part two of recorded coverage of the funeral of South Carolina Senator Clementa Pinckney, June 26, 2015. Sen. Pinckney was pastor of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC. He and eight members of his congregation were fatally shot along in a mass killing during evening bible study on Wednesday, June 17, 2015.

The funeral was broadcast live from the TD Arena at the College of Charleston, anchored by ETV's Beryl Dakers with Dr. Walter Edgar, professor emeritus of Southern Studies at the University of South Carolina, and ETV Radio's Russ McKinney. President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy.


  If there’s one food South Carolinians love, it’s barbecue.  Just in time for July 4 cookouts, we talk with Lake High, barbecue historian and co-founder of the South Carolina Barbecue Association, about the origins of barbecue, the variety of barbecue sauce types enjoyed in South Carolina (more than in any other state), and why, at the growing number of barbecue competitions statewide, South Carolina barbecue judges are the best in the nation.


  As the funeral services begin for the victims of the tragic slayings at Charleston’s historic Emanuel AME Church, remembrances by their friends and loved ones continue. Perhaps most noted was State Senator Clementa Pinckney, who was also pastor of Emanuel AME. As his influence was being felt across the globe, a group of his colleagues gathered to tell stories and share memories of the beloved minister and public servant.


Flowers, notes, and other items placed as memorials to the slain outside Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston in June, 2015.
Linda O'Bryon/SC Public Radio

  Drisana McDaniel is a Charlestonian who teaches anti-bias workshops for the Transformative Teaching Collective. Her family was personally touched by the recent murders at Emanuel A.M.E. Church. She talks with Jeanette Guinn about her own reaction to the tragedy, about how individuals are coping, and about how the people of Charleston are drawing together to comfort each other.


Memorials outside Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston on Sunday, June 21, 2015.
Linda O'Bryon

  The killing of nine members of Emanuel A.M.E. Church last week turned the nation’s attention Charleston, South Carolina, and, in no small measure to their church home. “Mother Emanuel,” as it is known, was established in the 19th century and has long been important to Charleston’s African American community. Historian Walter Edgar with Dr. Bobby Donaldson of USC and Dr. Jon N. Hale of the College of Charleston about Emanuel A.M.E. Church.


State Troopers bear the body of Sen. Clementa Pinckney to the South Carolina State House rotunda on Wednesday.
David Hunt

  State Senator Clementa Pinckney was not only a respected member of the South Carolina legislature, he was also a father, a husband and a friend to many people in and out of South Carolina. In addition, he was the beloved pastor of Emanuel AME Church in Charleston. In this report we hear from several of those who knew him well, and learn how their lives were touched by Pinckney.


Participants in "Black Lives Matter" march in Charleston, SC, June 20, 2015.
Jeanette Guinn

    Joy Vandervort-Cobb is an Associate Professor of Theater at the College of Charleston. She spoke candidly with Jeanette Guinn about her participation in Saturday's "March for Black Lives," which took place in the wake of the recent murder of 9 members of Emanuel A.M.E. Church. Vandervort-Cobb sees the march as part of the process by which the city can begin to heal and move toward racial equality.


  In the wake of the shootings at Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church, a renewed effort has arisen to remove the Confederate battle flag from the grounds of the State House. Among those calling for its removal is Gov. Nikki Haley, but there remain prominent South Carolinians on both sides of the issue. Today we hear from two of them: State Representative Jonathan Hill of Anderson, a republican who represents House District 8, and the Rev. Nelson Rivers IIL, long time Civil Rights activist and Vice President of Religious Affairs and External Relations for the National Action Network.


Linda O'Bryon

  The tragic shootings in Charleston last week shocked and saddened South Carolinians and all Americans.  But the resilience of Charlestonians shone through as they returned violence and hate with forgiveness.  In this report, U.S. Representative James Clyburn of South Carolina’s sixth congressional district remembers his friend, pastor and State Senator Clementa Pinckney, and gives his thoughts on why and how Charleston has remained  calm and has come together to heal after the tragedy.


Charleston Healing

Jun 22, 2015
Flowers, notes, and other items placed as memorials to the slain outside Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston in June, 2015.
Linda O'Bryon/SC Public Radio

In Charleston, SC, Sunday, church bells rang out as congregations across the city came together, many for the first time since the attack at Emanuel A.M.E. Church on Wednesday that left nine dead.

Linda O'Bryon was in Charleston and offers this report.


  This week on South Carolina Focus, we learn more about an eagerly-awaited annual event in the Palmetto State – the Miss South Carolina Pageant, which will be broadcast on statewide TV Saturday, June 27. Executive Producer Jay Pitts gives us an insight into the many elements – lighting, music, choreography, costumes and more - that go into making the spectacle that is the pageant, which will originate from Columbia’s Township Auditorium. Additional perspective comes from one of the contestants, Miss Hilton Head Island – who just happens to be ETV Radio’s own Kate McKinney!


Red Bellied Snake
Savannah River Ecology Laboratory

    This week on South Carolina Focus, we talk with Jim Knight, one of the state’s leading herpetologists, or reptile experts. He’s been studying and handling snakes, his specialty, for more than half a century, and now that summer is approaching, he says people who are out and about in the woods, on the lakes or even in their yards, may encounter a snake. Knight imparts some good advice on what to do in these unexpected meetings, and reminds us of the important role that snakes play in the cycle of nature, and perhaps even in the future treatment of some diseases as well.


Tut Underwood
SCETV

  On this South Carolina Focus, we remember the great South Carolina humorist William Price Fox, known for his books such as “Dixiana Moon,” “ Southern Fried” and “Doctor Golf.” His close friend Charles Israel talks about this gregarious, magnetic writer and how he saw the humor in life, as well as discussing one of the great adventures of Fox’s youth.


Roy Thomas
Alan Waite

  This week on South Carolina Focus, we talk with Roy Thomas, who wrote and edited The Avengers, among other titles, for Marvel Comics, and who recently authored the colorful tome “75 Years of Marvel: From the Golden Age to the Silver Screen.” The St. Matthews, SC, resident talks about the new blockbuster movie “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” featuring the title villain he created, and gives us a glimpse into the world of comics with the “true” origin of the Avengers, inspired more by printers’ deadlines than a brainstorm for a new “dream team” of heroes.


In the old-time American music tradition of "shapenote" singing, Sacred Harp is both the name of a songbook and a name for a singer's heart. Piccolo Spoleto brings traditional singers from around the South for an old-time all-day singing event from The Sacred Harp on Saturday afternoon from 10:00 am to 3:30 pm in the Gage Hall on Archdale St. in Charleston.

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