A Night in Wonderland

The 2017 Columbia Museum of Art Gala
By Kirstie Boone

On April 1, Columbians are invited to step into the middle of a fairy tale and escape reality in exchange for a world full of art, fun and whimsy at the Columbia Museum of Art’s “A Night in Wonderland” Gala. The event, which celebrates and supports the arts, will feature delicious cuisine, specialty cocktails, lively entertainment and enchanting décor. Guests will have the opportunity to sip tea (or something stronger) in Alice’s garden party, dance to dueling pianos with the Queen of Hearts, nibble on treats from Scott Hall Catering, sample sweets in the Caterpillar’s dessert lounge, marvel at performances by the University of South Carolina Dance Company, and follow the Cheshire Cat and the Root Doctors down the rabbit hole.

unnamedColumbia Metropolitan Magazine is a proud sponsor of “A Night in Wonderland,” which will showcase the CMA’s spring exhibition Salvador Dalí’s Fantastical Fairy Tales, curated by CMA Chief Curator Will South. Prints are a major part of Dalí’s work, and the spring exhibition features 36 colorful prints from The Dalí Museum. With illustrations of beloved fairy tales and legends like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Don Quixote and The Little Mermaid, this exhibition explores the connections between art and literature as well as Dalí’s fine and varied techniques in creating art.

This whimsical, black-tie gala attracts 800 to 1,000 prominent community citizens, museum supporters, and art lovers from around the state. Since the museum’s first gala, hosted 10 years ago, the event has grown to become the CMA’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

Gala65 copy“The Gala is not only the museum’s signature fundraising event, but also an opportunity to expose the museum to new audiences,” says Emily Brady Bedenbaugh, 2017 CMA Gala chair. “The Gala committee is charged with creating a unique and unforgettable experience that dazzles with food, entertainment and art to celebrate the Dalí exhibit and hopefully convert guests into lifelong museum members. We can’t wait to see you for a night in Wonderland!”

As a 2016 winner of the Institute of Library and Museum Services National Medal, the CMA is exceptional in its impact on the community. The museum was established in 1950 and now welcomes more than 150,000 visitors per year. The CMA and its educational programs provide an opportunity for the people of the Midlands to experience art in meaningful and impactful ways. One of the CMA’s goals is to reach and serve children and youth who have the least access to arts education and enrichment programs. The museum is investing in the community’s children and families and sustaining that investment to help them achieve great successes in school, life and beyond through art and art education.

To learn more about the CMA Gala, visit columbiamuseum.org/gala or contact Brian Dolphin, development department: brian@columbiamuseum.org or (803) 343-2198.

Night in Wonderland.Still001

Tasting Notes

Wines from around the world
By Kirstie Boone

Calling all oenophiles and foodies! You don’t want to miss this opportunity to sip wines TastingNotesBottlefrom around the world and taste delicious dishes from numerous local Columbia restaurants. On Monday, March 27, 2017 guests will gather at the South Carolina State Museum for the South Carolina Philharmonic’s Tasting Notes to sip wine and sample local delicacies while enjoying a silent auction featuring art, wine, trips and more. Music will be provided by the Reggie Sullivan Quartet and the Dreher High steel drum ensemble. Some the auction items include:

  • A weekend rental of a 2017 Aston Martin DB11, compliments of Foreign Cars Italia Charlotte
  • Dinner for eight at Jack Brantley’s elegant home, Aberdeen, in Camden
  • A one week stay in a charming three-bedroom country home in Nyons, France
  • A weekend stay in a two-bedroom apartment at the historic Fort Sumter House in Charleston.
  • A two-night stay at the Ledson Hotel in Sonoma, Calif., including private wine tasting for two at the Ledson Winery
  • A three-course dinner for six at the Capital City Club with wine and with music by SC Philharmonic musicians

More than 50 wines will be available for tasting at the event, and cigars from Tinder Box will be available for sampling outside.

Event chair, Brenda Wheeler, says “On behalf of our hard-working committee, I invite the community to come savor the flavors of the Midlands. Tasting Notes continues to grow and increase its impact for the South Carolina Philharmonic. With diverse restaurant partners, local beer and entertainment and 50 wines from around the world, Tasting Notes is established as a can’t-miss event each year. Hope to see you there!”

Columbia Metropolitan Magazine is a proud sponsor this year’s event. To purchase tickets, visit SCPhilharmonic.com or call (803) 254-7445. Tickets are $100, and you can even sponsor a musician for $80. Attire for this event is business casual.

From the Editor March 2017: Columbia Blossoms

_d5a8128“The Sun – just touched the Morning –

The Morning – Happy thing –

Supposed that He had come to dwell –

And Life would all be Spring!”  — Emily Dickinson

March has always been one of my favorite months; aside from it being my birthday month, turning the corner from winter to spring, it is the month of the first budding lime green leaves on the trees and courageous flowers in the garden. Columbia comes alive in bursts of color as azaleas bloom and jonquils push their way back up through the packed earth to remind their admirers of their cheerful existence. However, there is perhaps no flower that heralds spring like the tulip, whose popularity dates back to 17th century Holland. Read Mary T. Dial’s article on page 110 to discover how to incorporate these stunning blooms into your garden this year. 

Spring also signals the season for one of the Midlands’ most popular annual events — the Carolina Cup. A steeplechase race dating back to 1930, the Carolina Cup celebrates 83 robust years of impressive horses, jockeys, competition and, of course, fabulous spring fashion in Camden. From admiring the glistening coats of the sleek racehorses and enjoying a full day of delicious food and cocktails, to finally having an excuse to wear a ridiculous hat you bought once on King Street in Charleston, the Carolina Cup is not an affair to miss. Read Melissa Andrews’ article on page 70 to learn more about “the social event of the season.”

For those who enjoy cooking as much as I do (that is to say, not at all) yet want to prepare nutritious meals amid the busy springtime schedule of rehearsals and practices, glean inspiration from Helen Dennis’ article on page 40 for simple crockpot recipes. From breakfast to dessert, minimize prep-time and cleanup in the kitchen by letting one pot do it all. 

Columbians are fortunate to live in a city where talent can be cultivated to a level that earns widespread national acclaim and success. Three years ago, in recognizing the amazing individuals who have taken their careers to the national and even international stage, we launched Made in Cola Town — a column where we showcase the celebrities who we are proud to call our own, such as Anna Camp, Noelle Stevenson and Dr. Michael Parks. In this issue, we are excited to share Craig Melvin’s story of how his high school opportunity at WIS-TV led him to his current position as a weekday anchor on MSNBC and the Saturday co-anchor and a national correspondent for NBC’s TODAY show.

We hope you enjoy this issue and a beautiful season of spring. 


Margaret Clay

Love Your Heart: Tips for Cardiovascular Health

By Claire Harvin


According to the American Heart Association, heart disease and stroke are the #1 cause of death and disability for all Americans — heart disease is responsible for an average 1,690 deaths each year in just the Midlands.

However, more than 80 percent of risk factors for heart disease and stoke are preventable through a healthy lifestyle. A healthy diet and lifestyle are the best and easiest ways to fight cardiovascular disease, and by making simple steps and improving your overall pattern of choices, you can create long-term health benefits for yourself.

Here are some tips to help you make cognitive choices for a healthy heart:


Make better food choices, making sure to include a variety of nutritious foods from different food groups. Nutrient-rich foods have minerals, protein, whole grains and other nutrients but are lower in calories to help you control your weight, cholesterol and blood pressure.

  • Include a fruit and/or vegetable at every meal and snack.
  • Eat a variety of fresh, frozen and canned vegetables and fruits without high-calorie sauces or added salt and sugars.
  • Replacing high-calorie foods with fruits and vegetables can improve your health and weight.
  • Try to eat 8-10 servings, typically ½ – 1 cup, of fruits and vegetables daily.
  • Increase your fiber intake.
  • Replace white breads, sugary cereals, refined pastas or rice with whole-grain versions, which are rich in fiber.
  • Fiber is also found in the peels of fruits and vegetables.
  • Aim for skinless poultry and fish
  • Prepare them in healthy ways, without added saturated and trans
  • Eat a variety of fish at least twice a week, especially fish containing omega-3 fatty acids (for example, salmon, trout and herring).
  • If you choose to eat meat, look for the leanest cuts available and also prepare them in healthy ways.
  • Limit saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Replace these with the better fats, like monounsaturated fats (olive, canola, peanut, safflower and sesame oils) and polyunsaturated fats (soybean, corn and sunflower oils, as well as fatty fish).
  • If you need to lower your blood cholesterol, reduce saturated fat to no more than 5 to 6 percent of total calories. For someone eating 2,000 calories a day, that’s about 13 grams of saturated fat.
  • Avoid foods containing partially hydrogenated vegetable oils.
  • Choose foods with less sodium and prepare foods with little or no salt.
  • To lower blood pressure, aim to eat no more than 2,400 milligrams of sodium per day.
  • Reducing your daily intake to 1,500 mg is desirable because it can lower blood pressure even further. If you can’t meet these goals right now, even reducing sodium intake by 1,000 mg per day can benefit blood pressure.
  • Eat less of nutrient poor foods
  • You could use your daily allotment of calories on a few high-calorie foods and beverages, but you probably wouldn’t get the nutrients your body needs to be healthy.
  • Limit foods and beverages high in calories but low in nutrients.
  • Read Nutrition Facts labels carefully — the Nutrition Facts panel tells you the amount of healthy and unhealthy nutrients in a food or beverage.

Use up at least as many calories as you take in to maintain a healthy weight and help your overall health

  • This requires knowing how many calories you should be consuming, depending on your age, height, lifestyle and gender.
  • Don’t intake more than you use up if you don’t want to gain weight
  • Know your portion sizes and use portion control in all meals.

Prioritize regular physical activity — this can help you maintain your weight, keep off weight that you lose and help you reach physical and cardiovascular fitness, as well as lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.

  • Match your amount and intensity of physical activity to your daily calories consumed
  • Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity – or an equal combination of both – each week:
  • At least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity at least 5 days per week, for a total of 150 minutes


  • At least 25 minutes of vigorous activity at least 3 days per week, for a total of 75 minutes


  • Moderate- to high-intensity muscle-strengthening activity at least 2 days per week for additional health benefits.
Choose a healthy lifestyle, not just in your diet but also your decisions.


·      If you drink alcohol, drink in moderation.

·      Don’t smoke tobacco and avoid secondhand smoke

Inspired to make an effort to eat for your heart health? Here’s a Heart-Healthy Shopping List to help you achieve your goal:

Beverages and Treats

  • Coffee
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Green Tea
  • Red Wine (4 oz)

Breads, Grains, and Legumes

  • Dark Beans, such as kidney or black beans
  • Whole-grain breakfast cereals, like oatmeal
  • Whole grains, such as brown or wild rice, barley, and bulgur
  • Whole-wheat or whole-grain pasta
  • 100% whole-wheat bread

Dairy Products

  • Cheese (3 grams of fat or less per serving)
  • Fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk
  • Fat-free or low-fat soymilk with calcium
  • Fat-free or low-fat yogurt (choose options with less added sugar)

Fats and Oils

  • Light mayonnaise
  • Margarine and spreads with no trans fats
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Salad dressings that are oil-based instead of creamy
  • Vegetable oil (canola, olive, peanut, or sesame)


  • Apple
  • Banana
  • Berries: Blueberries, Cranberries, Strawberries, or Raspberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Orange
  • Papaya
  • Pear

Nuts and Seeds

  • Almonds
  • Chia seeds
  • Flaxseeds
  • Walnuts


  • Beef, at least 93% lean
  • Eggs and egg substitutes
  • Pork, unprocessed
  • Tofu
  • Seafood (high in omega-3), such as Salmon, Tuna or Trout


  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Green Beans
  • Kale
  • Red, yellow and orange veggies, such as Acorn Squash, Carrots, Red Peppers and Sweet Potatoes
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes

New Year, New Us

By Kirstie Boone

The large meals and long naps have finally come to an end, and it’s time to get back on track. We’re sharing our top five New Year’s Resolutions with you. Even more, we’re sharing how to keep those resolutions. Join us in making healthful and smart choices this New Year!

Workout: One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to begin working out or workout more frequently. Although many people make this resolution on January 1st, most of us lose focus of this goal rather quickly as the weeks and months go by. This occurs for multiple reasons, one of which is the motivation factor that must accompany any workout routine. It’s often difficult to find the motivation to go to the gym, but finding a gym that you enjoy visiting can be one way to maintain motivation. There are a plethora of gyms to choose from throughout the Midlands area. Anytime Fitness, for example, is located on Devine Street and open 24 hours a day. If you are a night owl or an extremely early riser, this could be a great choice. Doctor’s Wellness on Beltline offers group workout and yoga classes, as well as “Healthy in 12®”– a 12 week medically based lifestyle program targeting overall nutrition and physical fitness. Another option is 9 Round Fitness on Forest Drive. This gym offers a 30-minute workout consisting of nine rounds of intense stations that work each muscle in your body. Personal trainers are on site to encourage and push you to reach your goals.


Where and when you choose to workout depends greatly on your goals, personality and schedule. The most important tip is to have a steady workout routine. Your routine may be waking up before the sunrise and heading out for a quick morning run, an intense 30-minute gym visit, or relieving your stress from a long work day at the gym in the late evening hours. No matter what your new workout routine is, take it slow and enjoy keeping the healthful resolution all year long.

saladEat Healthful Foods: Another popular New Year’s resolution is to eat better, more nutritious foods. To live a healthier lifestyle, working out goes hand in hand with eating healthy. Although this resolution is made every year with good intentions, it’s often difficult to stick to when it’s been a stressful day and you’re ready to go home, order takeout and catch up on your favorite television shows. The positive effects of working out on a regular basis will quickly diminish if you don’t follow a healthy diet. The good news is that following a healthy diet is easier than it ever has been. With websites such as Pinterest full of healthy recipes as well as restaurants like Good Life Café with many organic, healthful choices, the options for healthful eating are endless. Find recipes you enjoy cooking and eating. Prepare food in advance and treat yourself occasionally after a week of good decisions. Read our article from last January on how to follow a natural detox to get your healthy eating started.

Lower Stress: Stress levels seem higher today than ever before. We stress about work, family, friends, the economy, politics … the list goes on and on. Believe it or not, there is a healthy level of stress. Healthy stress makes us work harder, perform better and often accomplish things we never thought possible. However, when stress gets in the way of our goals, causing us to begin to break down, it becomes a negative factor. Often, the holiday season is a negative stress inducer. In our Happy Holidays article, Thomas Barbian, Ph.D. explains that the holiday season can often add stress to an already stressful life, taking away the joy and gratitude that should be associated with this special time. To manage stress during this time and throughout the year, Dr. Barbian suggests exercising regularly, eating healthily, getting enough sleep, refraining from the use of alcohol, drugs or food to ease stress, and breathing well. From a lifestyle perspective, Dr. Barbian suggests managing time wisely, making time for hobbies, learning to say “no,” and spending time with people you enjoy and love. Follow these tips to prevent stress in 2017.

Volunteer: Investing your time into an organization that is making a difference is one way to give back to your community. Finding something that you are passionate about and feel you have a lot to contribute toward is the key to sticking to this New Year’s resolution. If you are devoting your time to a cause you truly care about, it will be easy to devote time to the cause as the days, weeks and months go by in 2017. Volunteering at a local organization not only helps the organization and the community, but it also can be extremely beneficial to your own well-being. Helping others is one of the best ways to better yourself, and volunteering is a wonderful resolution to make and keep in 2017.


Save Money: After the gift giving that goes along with the holiday season is over, the resolution to save money in the New Year is always a top priority. One way to keep this resolution throughout the entire year is to make and stick to a set budget. Accounting for every dollar you spend will help you see where you are wasting money and what areas you can cut back on to save money. If you have credit cards, make sure they offer rewards that suit your lifestyle. For example, if you are constantly on the road, open a credit card that gives you cash back for money that you spend on gas. If you frequent the grocery store for your family, a credit card that offers points or cash back for groceries is a great option. If you enjoy traveling via airplane, research credit cards that will give you points toward plane tickets. Talk to local banks and credit unions such as AllSouth Federal Credit Union and First Citizens Bank about what the best options are for your finances. Also, talking to a financial advisor about the best way to invest and save may be a great way to start your 2017.

Happy New Year from all of us at Columbia Metropolitan. We wish you a wonderful 2017!



From the Editor: January/February 2017

New Beginnings


My earliest memories are filled with Columbia Metropolitan, beginning with watching my parents, Emily and Henry Clay, launch the magazine 27 years ago. As the fifth generation on my father’s side to work in some capacity of publishing, we laugh that my sisters and I truly bleed ink. Growing up on Amherst Avenue, literally next to our office then on Devine Street, afforded me the unique opportunity to become a frequent visitor. It was a big moment when I was allowed to cross the small dividing street of Bellwood alone to run an errand to the office.

I spent many “productive” hours beneath my mother’s editorial desk with my pink, plastic briefcase and Spottie Dottie® pencils drawing the next cover of the magazine. I also enjoyed frequent “work breaks,” playing with my Lite-Brite® and copying my face on the Xerox® machine. Having progressed through the years to interning at CMM during my high school and college summers, and then to working full time after graduation, it’s now an incredibly great honor to step into my mother’s shoes as editor. 

The defining characteristic that makes CMM special is the uniqueness of the great city we are privileged to feature. Each year, we strive to honor the businesses most beloved by our readers through the celebrated Best of Columbia contest. The long-awaited listing of the 2017 winners is on page 42, as well as their most memorable reflections from the past year. 

Best-selling author Gary Chapman, whose church I attended while a student at Wake Forest University, has contributed his expert advice on keeping love alive this Valentine’s Day — and throughout the lifetime of a marriage — through understanding the five love languages. Don’t miss his article on page 28. 

Also in this issue is Melissa Andrews’ feature on the big trend of tiny homes which is sweeping through the Midlands. Learn uses for miniature dwellings as both weekend getaways and permanent residences, as well as tricks for pairing down and simplifying life’s clutter on page 120. 

We hope you enjoy these stories as well as all of the other articles written by our talented writers in this first issue of 2017. 

Happy New Year!

Margaret Clay

Gift Giving 101

By Kirstie Boone

Excitement fills the air as the holidays draw near. As the holiday season arrives, we anticipate fabulous parties, beautifully decorated homes, delicious food, the best of winter fashion and, of course, the joyous tradition of gift giving. Choosing the perfect gift can add stress to an already busy time of year as gift giving can be quite tricky and even frustrating at times. We are counting down our top 10 favorite gift ideas to give you inspiration for the gift giving season!

10. Picture this! A camera is the perfect gift for someone who truly values the little memories in their everyday life. In a world where iPhone cameras capture our every move, we often forget about the variety of high quality cameras to choose from. Cameras are perfect for capturing special memories especially during the holiday season. Polaroid cameras have recently seen an upgrade, and can be found in a variety of colors in a fun, new shape.


9. Date it! For a mom, sister or coworker who is always on the go, now is the perfect time to give her a new planner or calendar for 2017. The new year is almost here, and she will be filling up a new calendar with dates and to-do lists in no time! Lilly Pulitzer planers are always a favorite (check out Pink Sorbet or Invitation Station for adorable planners in all shapes and sizes).

Pink Sorbet

8. Personalize it! Men can often be difficult to buy for, but a genuine leather monogrammed wallet is the perfect gift for any man in your life. You can personalize it with a name, phrase or monogram if you’d like. Whether you are buying for your dad, brother or husband, this gift is one that will be put to good use for years to come. Check out Initially Yours Columbia Luggage on Lady Street for all of your monogrammed needs this holiday season!


7. Organize it! For the “techie” in your family or friend group, this charger roll-up will keep the chords for all of their gadgets organized. Perfect for storing chargers and headphones, this gift can also be personalized with a monogram. Its compact size allows for easy storage in a purse or glove compartment, and it’s a great way to keep all of your cords untangled and separated.


6. Smell this! Who doesn’t love a delicious smelling candle? Pair the yummy fragrance of Rewined candles with the fact that they are handmade out of recycled wine bottles, and you have the perfect gift. Not to mention that the company began in Charleston, South Carolina. The names and fragrances of the candles are inspired by various wines and include scents such as Pinot Grigio, Champagne, Merlot, Cabernet and Pinot Noir. Rewined also makes soaps and glassware which make wonderful gifts! You can find Rewined candles and other Rewined products at local boutiques throughout the Midlands.


5. Drink it! Tumblers make excellent gifts for anyone on your list whether you are purchasing the gift for a male or female. For this reason, they seem to be a favorite for Secret Santa gatherings and Chinese gift exchanges. Our favorite tumblers for this holiday season are Yeti tumblers and Corkcicle tumblers. Yeti tumblers are extremely durable, and Corkcicle tumblers keep beverages cold for nine plus hours and hot for three hours. Both tumblers come in various sizes and colors, and can be personalized by adding a vinyl or engraved monogram or name. Tumblers make a great gift for the hot chocolate lover or coffee addict, as well as someone who loves to keep ice cold water close by throughout the day. Check out your local hardware store for Yeti tumblers and local gift shops for Corkcicle tumblers!

Don’t Break it! Looking for the perfect gift for the wine lover or hostess in your life? Govino stemless wine glasses are made of shatterproof, recyclable material and are BPA and BPS free. Govino also makes champagne flutes, cocktails, beer glasses and decanters, all perfect gift options for a friend or family member who loves to entertain. These “unbreakable” wine glasses are great to have on hand during the holiday season, especially during busy holiday parties. They also come in handy in the spring and summer months when drinks will be sipped poolside.


Serve it! The holiday season is the perfect time to give someone special a festive serving tray. A serving tray makes a wonderful gift for a friend or mother-in-law who loves to entertain. With New Year’s Eve just around the corner, this thoughtful gift is sure to be put to good use for the parties that are in store. We love this festive serving tray with a matching cheese board and coasters!

Note it! You can’t go wrong with stationary during the holiday season. Correspondence cards or notepads are the perfect gift for a sister who loves to write letters or a coworker that likes to take notes or doodle. A thank you note never goes out of style, and a beautiful set of thank you notes makes a wonderful Christmas gift. We love the classic style of Kate Spade’s correspondence cards and thank you notes! Many gift stores in the Midlands carry an assortment of Kate Spade stationary.

Read it! Give the gift that’s a perfect fit for everyone on your list, a subscription to the city magazine for the capital of South Carolina, Columbia Metropolitan Magazine. We may be a little biased, but a subscription is a gift that will keep giving throughout the year. Click here to subscribe to CMM and receive free perks such as gift cards to restaurants and Pure Barre classes, tickets to ballets and a free Columbia Metropolitan t-shirt!




From the Publisher: December 2016

Bravery in Time of Need

Keeping society safe


have always loved the police, and I don’t mean the band. I mean the wonderful men and women who daily put their lives at risk to make sure mine is safe. When I was 12 years old, I started my babysitting career. Spending time with young children has always been a source of great delight for me, but there was one problem. I was, and still am, very easily scared. One evening on the job, I heard a strange noise across the dark backyard. Without hesitation, I dashed to the phone and called the police. I nervously twitched until I heard the siren blaring down the street. With the blue lights blinking through the front windows, I threw open the door to see my heroes scouring the yard, front and back.

Within minutes, the culprits immerged. Two runaway springer spaniels were caught digging in the trashcans, causing the noise that startled me. I thanked the police profusely for securing the premises. What I should have done was let them know that I would be babysitting a few blocks away the next night and might possibly be in touch. Remarkably, I had a busy career in babysitting despite my tendency to call my buddies whenever the slightest noise spooked me. Apparently, blue lights flashing in front of a home in neighborhoods where I frequented prompted the response: “Did you see the police car at the Reids’ home last night? Emily must have been babysitting.”

I recently attended the Palmetto Center for Women awards banquet honoring women whose outstanding achievements distinguish them as leaders. I was impressed by each honoree but was riveted when Lt. Frieda Wyatt’s and Lt. Maria Yturria’s names were announced. As they strode to the front with their pistols hanging from their sides, I was struck by their poise, grace and strength. If you want to learn more about Lt. Wyatt, Lt. Yturria and their status as positive role models for young people today, read our article on page 52 which features females on the police force.

It’s been years since I’ve called the police when hearing strange noises, but I take great comfort in knowing if I’m scared or in need, our remarkable heroes and heroines will streak across Columbia to take care of me. They are here to take care of you too. This holiday season, let’s be sure to express our appreciation for our police force patrolling our city. I hope we can all reach out in some small way to thank them for keeping us safe. 

To you … and to our men and women in blue, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


Emily Clay

Off to the Races

The 47th Annual Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup

By Margaret Clay; Photography by Emily Clay

“And they’re off!” As the thundering of hooves stormed by the grandstand, I watched enraptured as horse and rider soared over the jumps in dense clusters before making another dash towards the next fence. It has been many years since I last attended The Carolina Cup Racing Association’s annual Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup as a young child, and this year I found out just how much I have been missing.


Each year on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, this fabulous steeple chase takes place at the Springdale Race Course in Camden. The first International Steeplechase in America, the Colonial Cup was the richest steeplechase in the country when it began in 1970 with a $100,000 purse, ranking it just behind The Grand Steeplechase of Paris, the richest steeplechase in the world. In the early years, horses from unnamed-6three continents and 10 countries were invited to the race. While the race still attracts talented foreign runners, the horses are now owned by Americans.

The Colonial Cup is also the last steeplechase of the season, making it a very coveted victory as the outcome can often determine the year-end awards. It is additionally the last Grade I stake of the season, so all the undercard races are championships. For spectators, the Springdale Race Course offers a unique panoramic view as the 2 ¾ mile course features an inner loop and an outer loop design. No portion of the course is repeated; all 18 fences are jumped a single time.

unnamed-8We at Columbia Metropolitan were honored to be the Post & Paddock Tent sponsor at this year’s event. Our tent looked out on the paddock where the horses warmed up before the races and where the jockeys mounted before filing out onto the race track. We also participated in the Post & Paddock Shoppes where the likes of Orvis, Barbour, Dubarry of Ireland and Alan Flusser also had booths.

unnamed-9Our first stop of the morning was to check out the infield festival events—namely, the terrier races, the whippet races and the falconry demonstration. I had never watched a dog races before and was delighted at the Jack Russells running their hearts out to catch the rapidly retracting lure. Similarly, the whippets dashed after a lure with such a thundering of their tiny, graceful feet that I would have hardly thought possible. There was also a Novemberfest micro-brew tent, mule carriage rides and fox hound puppies for cuddling by The Camden Hunt Club.

unnamed-3The first of the seven races had an 11:30 post time, and we enjoyed watching the paddock as the grand, sleek animals paraded by, making guesses as to who the victor might be. Each race was about 30 to 45 minutes apart and was announced by the unmistakable trumpeting of the race’s start, at which point we progressed over to the grandstand. In the between time, we feasted on the delicious food and drinks in the Post & Paddock Tent and enjoyed catching up with the many familiar faces also attending the races. The weather was sunny with a refreshing breeze, and everyone looked fabulous in their country fall attire.

unnamed-5Emily Clay, my mother, and I were honored to present the trophy in the winner’s circle of the third race, the Raymond G. Woolfe Memorial with a $25,000 purse, run in honor of Marion du Pont Scott’s trainer of many years as well as the longtime manager of Springdale Race Course. Invocation, a French Horse, was the winner, trained by Joe Davies and ridden by Patty Young, who was last year’s Champion Jockey. We presented a silver engraved tray, as well as a bottle of Woodford Reserve Bourbon, engraved with race’s name, to Straylight Racing, LLC – the proud owners of Invocation.unnamed-7

Our calendars are already marked for next November, but before then we look forward to returning to the Springdale Race Course for the much anticipated Carolina Cup on April 1st!