Accolades and Reopenings for Richland Library


Columbia’s local library receives prestigious national medal and renovates the Cooper Branch

By Helen Clay

Summertime offers new opportunities for reading as kids complete summer reading requirements and adults craft literature lists of their own, hoping to relax with new novels during family vacations or downtime. While submersing yourself in a new story is entertaining, the process of choosing which book will become your companion for the next few weeks is equally exciting. Will you revisit historical events, experience thrillers, or re-read your favorite classic?

In Columbia, we are lucky to have a vast book collection at our fingertips through Richland Library. Richland library boasts of an extensive collection that fulfills every reader’s needs — novels, historical fiction, children’s literature, biographies, primary resources, and more! Last year, the Richland Libraries received more than two million visits, a number that does not include the numerous programs Richland Library brings to Cola Town in different venues. Richland Library’s dedication to the local community and its impressive book selection garnered the library a prestigious honor as the winner of the 2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. This award is the nation’s highest award given to museums and libraries for service and dedication to their community. We have all reaped benefits as residents of the Midlands from Richland Library’s civic service, and Columbia Metropolitan Magazine joins the community in congratulating them on this elite honor!

Cooper Preview_July17
After a nearly $3 million renovation, Richland Library Cooper Branch reopens its doors to the public.

As Richland Library continues its work throughout our community, the organization celebrates yet another milestone in 2017… the GRAND REOPENING of the Richland Library Cooper Branch! After a nearly $3 million renovation, the Copper Branch is flinging open its doors to the public once again. The project included a reconfiguration and renovation of the existing 10,000 square foot structure and a new addition of 1,000 square feet. The branch now includes an expanded children’s area, the addition of two “Makerspaces” (an area that provides hardware supplies, software, and electronics for people to gather to create and learn), a quiet reading room, and a covered book drop.

Richland Library Cooper Branch invites you and your family to come celebrate the grand reopening from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Wednesday, July 19. Come experience the charm of this local library and make new summer memories with your children. My fondest childhood excursions involved a trip to the Richland Library Cooper Branch with my shiny new library card in hand, eager with the anticipation of stuffing my bag full of wonderful literary treasures… It was almost better than Christmas.

Don’t miss your chance to view the newly renovated Richland Library Cooper Branch tomorrow morning! What will be next on your summer reading list?

Richland Library Cooper Branch GRAND REOPENING

Date: July 19, 2017

Time: 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Location:  5317 Trenholm Rd, Columbia, SC 29206




Hair Health Tips

By Kirstie Boone

From hair dryers to curling and straightening irons, our hair takes a lot of heat throughout the year, not to mention the damaging hair products we often use. Summer is the perfect time to revamp your beauty routine and ensure your hair remains healthy all year long. There are many tips on keeping your skin safe from the sun, but how do you keep your hair healthy while lounging on the beach in the hot summer sun? How do you protect your hair from the chemicals found in chlorine pools? Refresh your beauty rituals this summer to have healthier hair. From hats to hair masks, we’ve got tips from the experts on the most effective ways to protect and rejuvenate your tresses.

Sun Safety

Like your skin, your hair can be easily damaged in the sun. According to Blair Wessinger at Studio SB, the best way to keep your hair safe from the sun is “hats, hats, hats!” Wearing a hat while lounging on the beach or by the pool protects not only your face from harmful UV rays, but also your hair. Hats will also protect colored hair from being tinted to undesirable shades.

Kelly Odom, owner of Kalikō Salon, advises the use of leave-in repair serums. “I always have one in my beach bag,” says Kelly. “The heat from the sun actually helps open the hair cuticles for better penetration.”

While many people use products such as lemon juice to “naturally” lighten their hair in the sun, this can actually be very harmful. I’ll never forget the summer my younger sister opted for “natural” highlights from the sun and sprayed a product called “Sun In” in her hair before we went to the pool. She continued this ritual for an entire month, but her hair turned more of a brassy orange color as opposed to the soft blonde she was hoping for. It also became very brittle and began breaking off around her roots. She quickly made an appointment at the salon, and to her dismay, learned that the product she was using to “naturally” lighten her hair was actually a combination of bleach, hydrogen peroxide and some other not-so-natural ingredients. Combined with the harmful rays of the sun, these ingredients temporarily ruined her hair. She was forced to cut the dry, brittle patches out, but her hair thankfully grew back healthy and in a natural color.

While results of using such products may vary from person to person, it is strongly encouraged that you check with a trusted salon before using any product. Everyone’s hair is different, so making sure you’re using products that are safe for your hair is key.



In addition to the sun damage that occurs while you lounge by the pool, the chlorine in the water can also be harmful to both your skin and hair. Wearing a swim cap is one way to prevent hair damage, as is fastening your hair in a high pony-tail or bun before taking a dip.

However, if there is no way around getting your hair wet, there are some options to reduce the damaging effects of chlorine. One way to minimize damage is by wetting your hair before getting in the pool, says Lex Moore of OCCO Luxury Spa + Salon. If your hair is dry when it comes into contact with pool water, the chlorine has a better chance of soaking into the strands of hair. By wetting your hair pre-swim, you’ll minimize the amount of chlorine that soaks in.

Another helpful tip is to rinse your hair as soon as possible after you come into contact with chlorine. Even if it’s only in a poolside shower, it’s best to rinse as much of the chlorine out of your hair and off your body as soon as possible. Later, to make sure all chlorine has been removed, you can use natural remedies such as baking soda and apple cider vinegar. Mix one tablespoon of baking soda with one cup of water for an at-home remedy. Or mix one part apple cider vinegar and four parts water to create a natural method for removing the chlorine post-swim. Lex suggests using L’Oreal Professional Nutrifier Series after swimming. This is a new formula that’s silicone-free and contains glycerol and coconut oil. Its lightweight texture is perfect for dry and undernourished hair.

Also, hair masks are great for repairing hair after exposure to pool chemicals. Lex suggests doing a hair mask at home once a week to keep your hair healthy and stronger between salon visits. Blair also encourages the use of hair masks as a source of extra conditioning, but advises users to get the right mask for your hair type. “With fine hair especially, you don’t want to get anything to heavy,” says Blair. Many hair masks can be applied in the shower after, or in place of, your regular conditioner. Let it sit for several minutes before rinsing it out, or for hair in dire need of repair, leave it in for longer. Others should be applied to washed and towel-dried hair and left in for at least 20 minutes before rinsing.

beauty-15932_1920Hair dryers, straightening irons, curlers, oh my!

When using styling tools, it’s important to be mindful of the heat setting. Kelly advises you to consider the texture of your hair when choosing the temperature for styling tools. Blair says that you get what you pay for when it comes to choosing styling tools. It’s worth it to spend a little extra to get high-quality, salon-brand tools. Joye Fowler of Ashley’s Alley recommends only purchasing ceramic hot tools that have the capability of exceeding 400 degrees, and the higher above that the better — even if you don’t need that level of heat, it ensures that the ceramic is high-quality and thus safer for your hair. Lex advises her clients to go no higher than 410 degrees, however it’s best to stay around 350 degrees. “Play it smart. Start lower and, if you feel like you need to go up more, slowly turn your iron up. This keeps your hair from getting singed!” Lex also says it’s best to use a heat protectant, such as the Infinium 3 spray, when using styling tools.

The possibility of avoiding heated styling tools completely isn’t a realistic option for most. However, summer is an excellent time to take a break from the nonessential tools. There are many fun, summer up-dos that don’t require styling. After drying your hair, hairstyle-1473541_1920try braiding it or putting it in a chic bun for the day instead of using a straightening iron. Bonus points if you can avoid the hair dryer all together for a day or two. Blair suggests using a sea salt spray like R&Co Rockaway when your hair is wet. After using the spray, scrunch your hair to give it a nice “beach wave” without having to use styling tools. When you’re on vacation, give your hair a vacation as well. Ditching the styling tools for a bit will give your hair a much-needed break, and the time you’d normally spend styling your hair can be spent enjoying a vacation. It’s a win-win situation!


Kelly says that the amount of time between washes will vary from person to person. However, washing your hair every day prevents your natural oils from doing their job. If you find that you have an extra oily scalp, try a hydrating shampoo instead of stripping the natural oils with harsh shampoos that often cause your scalp to overcompensate from being stripped and produce even more oils. Kelly also suggests using dry shampoos between washes. They absorb oils and add texture! Blair suggests only washing your hair two to three times per week. In regards to the application of dry shampoo, Joye says the best way to use the shampoo is to shake the can before spraying at the roots. Massage the dry shampoo into your hair, then lightly blow dry on low to get rid of the dry shampoo residue.


The frequency with which you get a haircut usually depends on your styling methods. If you use heated styling tools or chemicals in your hair, Blair suggests visiting the salon every six to eight weeks. Lex says that although it is often assumed that getting your hair cut makes your hair grow faster, that’s not necessarily the case. Getting you hair cut on a regular basis keeps your ends healthy, which makes your hair grow longer and healthier because it prevents splitting and breaking. In the long run, if you don’t maintain a regular haircut routine, you have to cut your hair shorter to get rid of more damage.

Follow these easy tips and hints to ensure your hair stays healthy all summer long. Whether you plan on spending the summer by the pool, on the boat or on the beach, make sure you take the necessary steps to protect both your skin and your hair. Now let your hair down and enjoy our beautiful, South Carolina summer!



Emanuel: Love is the Answer

By Kirstie Boone

Like many people in the South, I have a very special place in my heart for Charleston. I will never forget June 17, 2015, when nine precious lives were taken by someone filled with hate and evil. Along with several others, these individuals were in a place of worship, a place they felt safe — Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. After the events of that day unfolded, many wondered how this church, this city and this state would recover from something so heartbreaking. How would we recover from losing these nine special individuals as a result of such a senseless and hateful crime?

Not only would Charleston soon begin to recover, but it would also set an example for cities across the nation in moving forward after a tragedy. Violence was not met with more violence, as Charleston responded with love, faith, hope and forgiveness. Charleston and the state of South Carolina demonstrated that in the face of evil, love always prevails.

70557237-ccb17-0079 (1)- Ashley ConcannonArtistic and Executive Director of Columbia City Ballet, William Starrett, set out to honor the Mother Emanuel church by creating the ballet, Emanuel: Love is the Answer which took place in Columbia April 7th and 8th. “I felt it was a time where we needed a positive healing tool of transcendence and unity,” says William. “To me, art and particularly dance is a form of prayer. The extraordinary message of forgiveness coming from families echoing from South Carolina took on an unexpected strength and awareness that inspired me to personally commemorate these important individuals whose lives were taken as they were celebrating their God. I wanted to help use this tragedy to learn that we must embrace our differences and that love is the answer.”

The ballet balanced the sadness of tragedy with the hope for unity that came as a result. During one of the performances, the voices of victims’ families speaking to the court room echoed through the speakers during one of the performances. Over and over, the words “I forgive you” were repeated by the family members. On stage, the dancers expertly portrayed the emotion and heartbreak felt by the victims’ families in this difficult moment. Of those who were killed in the shooting, William says, “I tried to makeemmanuel- Kevin Kyzer their voices and lives have even greater importance. We must learn that we are more alike than we are different. Hate is a cancer, and love is the answer.” Later in the ballet, dancers performed to the song “All You Need is Love” and encouraged the audience to clap and laugh. This performance demonstrated the hope and love that were shown in the aftermath of the shooting.

William says that he hopes those in the audience took away a spirit of love from the ballet. “We must live every moment with compassion and kindness. We must celebrate our differences, because they are gifts that we were given when we were placed on this earth. We must use these differences to grow, develop, evolve and become more enlightened. We each have an importance and it starts with us always coming from a positive place of love.”
emmanuel-85 - Kevin Kyzer

Though losing these precious nine lives broke our hearts, it did not break Charleston or South Carolina. We, as a united state, demonstrated what it means to love and what it means to believe that the best thing to do in a time of tragedy, despair or confusion is to show unity, hope and love.

For more information on the Columbia City Ballet, visit

A Thoughtful Touch

By Kirstie Boone

With the holiday season quickly approaching and the atmosphere becoming more festive by the minute, it’s time to begin planning for your fabulous holiday parties. Between the cooking, cleaning, planning and decorating, it’s easy to overlook the small details involved in party planning. Decisions such as which color tablecloth to use, how many seats to plan for each table and what the menu should be often overshadow smaller, more personal aspects of party planning. However, the small decisions are just as important as the big details. Little things such as creative, personalized place cards can easily take your party from ordinary to amazing, and we’ve gathered our favorite place card ideas for holiday inspiration!

Add a pine cone to your place setting to display your place cards. Wrap wire in a circular shape then attach the wire to the top of the pine cone to hold the place card. For a creative twist, paint the pine cones a festive color like gold or red.

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These gorgeous pumpkins are the perfect place setting for Thanksgiving dinner! Use twine or ribbon to tie the place card to the stem of a pumpkin. Bonus points if you use a fall-themed shape for your place card.

Your guests won’t “be-leaf” their eyes when they see this stunning place setting. Start by gathering large leaves or buying decorative leaves from your local craft store. Use gold spray paint to coat the leaves. Let dry, then write each guest’s name on the leaf and place at each setting.

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Use a small, potted succulent for each place setting. Attach each guest’s name to a short skewer to stick in the soil of the succulent. This place card holder doubles as a unique party favor that guests will be able to take home with them!

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For a more rustic place setting, use a cross cut of a branch or tree for your place setting. Use a marker to write your guests’ names on the wood. If you don’t have access to tools to cut up a branch, these cross cuts can usually be found at craft stores.

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Use rosemary or pine sprigs to add a natural, simple touch to your table. These place settings not only look gorgeous, but also smell amazing! One option is to place the sprigs through the card, or wrap the springs into a wreath shape to place on top of a napkin or dish.


Jingle bells! Use bells to hold your place cards. This simple yet creative place card holder is sure to spread good cheer (and maybe a few jingles) around the dinner table.

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Remembering the small details during the busy holiday season will make any party complete. With these adorable place settings, guests are sure to remember your holiday party as being the best of the season. Happy Holidays from all of us at Columbia Metropolitan!

Columbia Chamber Gala

By Kirstie Boone

Columbia Metropolitan Magazine was a proud sponsor of the Columbia Chamber’s 114th Annual Gala on Thursday, September 29. This event was presented by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and celebrated the Chamber’s achievements of 2016 while previewing the agenda for 2017. Five individuals were recognized at the event for their extraordinary impact and involvement with the Midlands community. These individuals were people who have made a difference in the community and become leaders in the Midlands. “The Annual Gala gives the Chamber an opportunity to celebrate the outstanding individuals in our community who elevate the Midlands and create positive change,” says Carl Blackstone, Columbia Chamber President and CEO. “These honorees are the leaders in our region who work tirelessly to aid the Chamber’s mission of creating and promoting an environment where businesses can flourish.”


The Ambassador of the Year award is given to an individual in the community who exemplifies outstanding business ethics and influences the positive promotion and preservation of the greater region. The 2016 honoree for the prestigious Ambassador of the Year award was John W. Folsom, president and CEO of Colliers International South Carolina. John serves on the Executive Committee of the Midlands Business Leadership group, is a former board member and chair of Providence Hospital and a current board member and founder of “Salute from the Shore.” He is a former chair of the United Way of the Midlands, the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities and the South Carolina Independent Schools Association. John is a founding board member of Transitions, Columbia’s homeless service center. “Folsom’s leadership within our region is unwavering,” says 2015-2016 Columbia Chamber Chairman, Boyd Jones. “His passion for community involvement and commitment toward growing the economic and business environment in the area makes the Midlands a better place to live and do business.”

The 2016 Young Professional of the Year was Ashleigh Wilson, an attorney at Bowman & Brooke, LLP. Ashleigh was recently elected Secretary Treasurer of the South Carolina Young Lawyers Division where she also serves as the district representative for South Carolina and the Virgin Islands. Ashleigh serves on the Board of Directors for the Special Olympics South Carolina and spearheaded the implementation of FEMA’s Disaster Legal Service Hotline in the wake of the historic flooding. As a successful young professional in Columbia, Ashleigh strives to make the Columbia community better on a daily basis.

The 2016 Military Advocate of the Year was Steven Mungo, president of Mungo Homes. Steven is a past Honorary Wing Commander of the 169th Fighter Wing of the South Carolina National Guard. He has a passion for the Armed Forces, and has raised nearly $90,000 for the McEntire Joint National Guard Base event which has impacted over 2,000 South Carolina Air National Guard personnel. The event recognizes the sacrifices that Airmen and their families have made. Steven strives to help businesses better understand the importance of employing military in our community.

Mayor Steve Benjamin was named the Small and Minority Business Advocate of the Year. With a passion for small and minority businesses, Mayor Benjamin has created and retained over 160 jobs for small businesses. For the past five years, Mayor Benjamin has joined forces with the Columbia Chamber and Richland County to host the national Small Business Week Conference. Mayor Benjamin also had a crucial role in launching the Bull Street project in Columbia. Mayor Benjamin’s efforts ensure that Columbia will continue to grow toward becoming a better place to work and live.

Mike Weaver, owner of The Weaver Agency, was named Diplomat of the Year. In his 28 years as a Diplomat, Mike has given tirelessly to advance the Columbia Chamber. His experience has consisted of calling on Partners, attending events, assisting at various functions, winning numerous awards and serving as a knowledgeable leader as the Diplomat chair three times. Through his work at his company, Mike focuses on providing professional insurance and financial services to small businesses and individuals. The Weaver Agency’s focus is on understanding goals and challenges and creating, accumulating and protecting wealth. During his time as a Diplomat, Mike recruited his wife, Susan Weaver, to join the Diplomat team.

Columbia Metropolitan would like to congratulate all of the honorees from the 114th Annual Gala!


Good Morning Columbia.

By Abigail Thielke

You may have read Et Cetera in the April 2015 issue of CMM spotlighting a fond memory of interviews past. Here, you will find an extension of that column, in it’s original entirety straight from 1990s. We invited the current stars from the top eight radio stations for a casual forum. After asking their listeners to send us probing questions, we were loaded with great ammunition … which made for a hilarious day. We well remember their quick wit, comedic timing and poignant zingers, and the fun they had ribbing each other about blips and bloopers made on air, and of course, the good natured arguments about the best ratings.

As a special treat, we are posting the entire forum script. After reading their entertaining answers, we think you will agree that Columbia had a special line up of radio hosts. While we are glad that Jonathon Rush, Captain Telegram and Brent Johnson are still on the airwaves, we miss the days of so many local personalities on our radio stations.


So, let’s get started…

The morning DJ stars of the Midlands arrived at the old Vista Central Station … catered all those years ago by the ever popular Lillian’s.

The people responsible for waking up the city and for setting the tone for the entire community to start another day had finally gathered under one roof. In preparation for the event, the stars of the top-rated eight radio stations requested that their listeners send in probing, serious and crazy questions. How can Jonathon Rush get away with some of those more risqué comments on air? What is the number of radio stations where Woody Windham has worked?



What is Columbia’s best pick-up line?

Sammy Owens: Are those real?

Brent Johnson: Hello, my name is John Wrisley.

Ken Martin: I’m Gene McKay.

Dave Wright: Show me the way to your place.

John Wrisley: I’ve got a copy of a String of Pearls.

In agreement, the DJs said: It’s NOT, Hello, I’m a morning radio star!


What do listeners tell you when they first meet you in person?

Jim Mason: I thought you were older and fatter.

Dave Wright: You really are that old.

Bill Benton: I went to school with your son.

Curtis Wilson: You don’t look like you sound.

Captain Telegram: You are worse looking than you sound.

Woody Windham: No wonder you’re on the radio and not on TV.

Zack Daniels: You sound a lot taller.


Do you have instructions on what to do if aliens land in the Midlands and or another emergency?

Leo Windham: Call John Wrisley.

Brent Johnson: Seriously, we have a little book with an envelope inside with instructions.

Jonathon Rush: Yeah, and the instructions say to call John Wrisley and tell him to kiss his a- goodbye. Are these guys EVER serious?


What is the longest song you have ever played?

Sammy Owens: Holiday by Madonna.

Curtis Wilson: Thriller by Michael Jackson.

Zack Daniels: Can You See by Marshall Tucker Band.

Ken Martin: Hey Jude by The Beatles.

Jim Mason: Never Even Call Me By My Name by David Allan Coe.

Dave Dixon: Elton John songs.

John Wrisley: Sing, Sing, Sing by Benny Goodman.

Dave Wright: One of those old songs by Gene Krupa.

Bill Benton: El Paso by Marty Robbins (1950s)

Leo Windham: Inna Gadda Di Vida (In the Garden of Eden) by Iron Butterfly.

Woody Windham: American Pie by Don McClean.

Brent Johnson: Do You Feel Like We Do by Peter Frampton.

Kathy Scott: Rapper’s Delight by Sugarhill Gang. Great song!

Jonathan Rush: The One by Elton John.


What do you do when nature calls you away from the microphone while you’re on air?

Curtis Wilson: That brings us back to the question about the longest song you play!

Dave Wright: I always called these the ‘head’ songs – when I could use the head!

Jim Mason: That’s the best part about having a partner.


How did you get into broadcasting?

Dave Dixon: I couldn’t get a real job…!

Bill Benton: My grandmother told me when I was 8 that I should go on the radio. My uncle suggested it when I was 10 – and I started with television production in high school.

Brent Johnson: A lot of us are aspiring musicians – and this is as close as we can be.

Leo Wyndham: My brother, Woody, gave me a job because I was going to Carolina, and I needed the money.

Dave Wright: I won a junior DJ contest at 14. A little radio station in Charlotte hired me immediately – and I have been on the air ever since.

Jonathon Rush: I first realized I wanted a career in radio one blistering day riding the tractor is Saluda County – and listening to Gene McKay, Dave Wright and Bill Benton cutting up and having a good time. These guys were and are a real inspiration for me.

Ken Martin: I have to agree. And I must say it is a real pleasure being here today with them in our presence. They have made it to where we all want to be.

(With these sentiments shared, a round of applause broke out).



Who has worked on the most radio stations?

That would be me, Woody Wyndham said, shifting the mood from one of sentiment to laughter.


Who has the best reason to leave a job?

That would be me, Woody said, bringing an even louder outburst of laughter.


Who gets in the most trouble with the boss?

That would be me, Woody said.

That would be Woody, they all responded in perfect chorus, hitting the tables and laughing at the thought.


Who do you listen to when you are not broadcasting?

Bill Benton: I listen to nighttime a.m. radio.


What are your passions outside of work?

Golf, many said.

John Wrisley: Grandchildren.

Sammy Owens: Housesitting for Kathy Scott’s dog, Lucky.

Kathy Scott: Her name is LUCY, Sammy!

Curtis Wilson: Football.

Bill Benton: Hunting, hiking, and travelling.

Jim Mason: My wife, Brenda.


What to you think Columbia’s best kept secret is?

Gene McKay: B106.


What do you think is the most positive factor for the Midlands?

Brent Johnson: Riverbanks Zoo. After a recent trip to the Atlanta Zoo, I find Riverbanks to be much better.

Gene McKay: I find DJ’s with nothing better to talk about than zoos really suck.

Brent: Well Gene, they say that tact is the first thing to go!


Who is the most interesting entertainer you have met or interviewed?

Ken Martin and Zack Daniels: Garth Brooks by far.

Curtis Wilson: Walter Payton (Football Hall of Fame, Chicago Bears).

Dave Wright: Andy Griffith. It was during the mid-‘50s right after his record, Football, which sold millions, and his hit movie, No Time for Sergeants. He was famous, yet so normal.

Leo Wyndham: ‘PeeWee Herman. It was the day before he got caught doing his thing.

John Wrisley: I would have to say Jane Russell. Miss Russell was a most delightful person.

Bill Benton: Michelle Lee is absolutely the nicest person I’ve ever met. And Tom Selleck. A really nice fellow.

Jim Mason: Tim Conway. He was so quick that he turned it around like he was interviewing me.

Kathy Scott: Definitely Richard Simmons. He jumped up on the stool while we were on the air and tried to pull his shorts down. I’ve never seen Jonathon so flustered!


If you could ask one question of a dead person, who would it be and what would you say?

John Wrisley: Mr. Thomas Jefferson, You have had a chance to survey what we have done with the republic you and the other founders laid out for us. What was our mistake and how would you correct it?’

Bill Benton: General Custer, ‘Why did you attack the Sioux village that had 15,000 Indians with only 265 men to fight?’

Dave Dixon: Elvis, ‘Can I have a Cadillac, too?’

Sammy Owens: John F. Kennedy, ‘So how did you like the parade up to that point?’

At this point, the outdoor forum was interrupted by a flashing fire truck screaming out from the Columbia Fire Department headquarters across the street. The Kicks 96 crew lost no time in ribbing Sam Crews, the magazine lawyer on hand for the entertainment. Sit down, Sam, Ken Martin called out above the deafening sirens, It’s a fire truck – not an ambulance. But throw them your card anyway!


What do you advise your listeners to do when they are stalled in traffic listening to the radio?

Pee Wee Herman… Never mind, we won’t print it.


What is the most embarrassing situation you’ve ever been in with a call-in listener?

Dave Dixon: When I was at WNOK, I gave away tickets for a sold-out Journey concert. I didn’t have time to tape the winner’s response, so I just put her on the air live. When I asked her what her favorite radio station was, she said another station. It was a bad moment.


Do you sing along as the music plays?

Woody Wyndham: We do, but not on mike if we want to keep our listeners!

Bill Benton: Sure. Not every time, though.

Jim Mason: Oh, yeah. But Dave cuts me off.


Who gets up the earliest for work?

Brent Johnson: I get up at 3:15.

Kathy Scott: Well I get up at 3 a.m.

Sammy Owens: That’s because she has to do her hair.


What newspapers and journals do you use in preparing for your morning show?

John Wrisley: I use the Wall Street Journal a great deal.

Others responded: The wire services, The State, USA Today and of course, Columbia Metropolitan.


Who could pack the house at Williams/Brice Stadium?

Captain Telegram: Garth Brooks, easily.

Kathy Scott: The Village People.

Brent Johnson: Pink Floyd.

Woody Wyndham: The Stones.

Dave Dixon: Elvis.


Who is the best local band?

Dave Wright: The Carolina Jazz Society Band.

Hootie, several said.

The Wyndham Bros.: Isabel’s Gift.



What would be the perfect night out in Columbia?

Vista Station! – where else?


What is the most requested song you have ever played?

Gene McKay: When Your Old Wedding Ring Was New by Jimmy Rosselli.

Bill Benton: Baby, Let’s Play House by Elvis.

Dave Wright: Yes, Indeed by Peggy Lee (1957).

Curtis Wilson: I’ll Always Love You by Whitney Houston.

Woody Wyndham: Under the Boardwalk by The Drifters.

Leo Wyndham: Joy to the World by Three Dog Night.

Dave Dixon: Baby Got Back by Sir Mix-A-Lot.

Jim Mason: Swinging by John Anderson.

Sammy Owens: The Electric Slide. But the majority of those requests came from Kathy Scott.

Jonathon Rush: With a station like WNOK, that changes every day.

Brent Johnson: Have I Told You Lately That I love You by Rod Stewart.

John Wrisley: Blue Bird of Happiness by Jan Peerce (1947).

Zack Daniels: Chattahoochee by Alan Jackson.

Ken Martin: Don’t Take the Girl by Tim McGraw.


Who do you think will buy Brantley Manor?

Captain Telegram: Madonna.

Jim Mason: Michael Jackson.

Dave Dixon: No Jim, Elvis!

Jonathon Rush: Benchmark.

Editor’s note from 1994: With the completion of buying WVOC, Benchmark Communications will own four stations in the Midlands market.


Does your boss listen to your show and criticize?

In unison, Oh yeah! Followed by multiple groans.

Dave Wright: Well, if the boss calls, get his name.

Kathy Scott: Our general manager is wonderful. She’s great about letting us do our own thing.

Leo Wyndham: Frank Baker listens every morning and rarely criticizes. I’m not sucking up – that’s the truth.


What happens when your boss gets mad about things you say on air?

Woody Wyndham: Oh, they just fire me.

Ken Martin: No. That’s when the station gets bought out by Benchmark.

Brent Johnson: You receive THE MEMO.

Dave Dixon: They don’t get mad at us because we’re considered the Walt Disney of radio!

Jonathon Rush: Actually, it’s a lifelong dream to have your own show on your own radio station. Every DJ aspires to own a radio station – and these guys here (Bill Benton, Gene McKay, Dave Wright) have done it in an age when local radio stations are all owned by huge corporations.


What is the best job in Columbia?

The consensus: Being on morning radio.


For the last question, do you have anything you would like to ask each other?

John Wrisley: I just want to know who I work for now.

All: Benchmark!



(L-R) Front: Leo and Woody Windham; 2nd row: Gene McKay, Bill Benton, Dave Wright, John Wrisley; 3rd row: Curtis Wilson, Brent Johnson, Capt. Telegram, Zack Daniels, Ken Martin, Dave Dixon, Jim Mason; 4th row, Sammy Owens, Kathy Scott, Jonathon Rush