Jim Buice column: Drama highlights the struggle of American Patriots

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 12, 2018

In many trips heading down I-85 over the years, I recall going through Kings Mountain on the way to South Carolina, but I never knew the significance of this tiny town until celebrating our nation’s independence on this Fourth of July.

Instead of the traditional cookout and fireworks, we made the journey to witness “Liberty Mountain — The Revolutionary Drama” at Joy Performance Center in the quaint little downtown. There we learned what many historians consider to be the turning point of the American Revolution.

Bob Inman, a former news anchor on WBTV in Charlotte, wrote the play that brought to life the Battle of Kings Mountain in 1780 and how a group of resilient pioneers fought for the freedom we have today.

The play was informative as well as entertaining, showing the hardships encountered by the rebelling American Patriots in their victory over British Loyalist troops… and the ultimate showdown. There were many special effects throughout with guns being fired, and you could even smell the gunpowder.

This is the fifth season of the drama, which runs on weekends from late June to late July in addition to the special holiday presentation.

I must say it was a true learning opportunity and made for a July 4th like never before.

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Should hotels make room for Rover?

Honestly, that was the last thing on my mind when we were checking into a hotel recently in Atlanta.

Then, all of the sudden, I heard a deafening bark — actually several of them — that almost made me jump out of my shoes.

The dog was apparently around the corner in a hallway just out of sight, which made it even more jolting since I was totally not expecting it, so I asked the person at the front desk: “Am I at a hotel or a kennel?”

To which, she quickly responded, “We’re dog-friendly here.”

My reply: “Sorry, but that one doesn’t sound too friendly,” giving me pause (not paws) before handing her my credit card.

By the time I went out and got my wife, and we brought in our things, the dog was gone.

I still wonder what kind of dog it was, although I saw on the internet — the source for everything these days — that a golden retriever from Australia named Charlie had claimed the Guinness World Record a few years back for the loudest bark at 113.1 decibels. I really believe this dog could have challenged old Charlie for the coveted barking trophy.

Anyway, I never saw — or heard — this dog again and only came across one other smaller pooch on a leash in the lobby in our two days there.

However, it made me think about the “pet-friendly” thing when it comes to hotels.

I’m not anti-dog. I once had a dachshund for 16 years and loved that little guy.

But he always stayed behind at Camp Abri when we went out of town. When I was on vacation, I thought a nice kennel was the appropriate place for him — not the hotel with us when we were going here and there and everywhere where he wasn’t welcome.

If you go shopping or to a concert, play, ballgame (unless it’s “Bark in the Park night) or a nice restaurant, Rover isn’t welcome. So I guess you leave him behind in the room.

Then there’s the barking, the smell and mess, or if a dog has been romping on or laying on the bed and carpet. And, of course, many humans who are the primary occupants in hotels have pet allergies.

It seems to me the better solution, even for Rover, would be to take him to one of those pet resorts where he can have his own room with a nice bed and television, and perhaps a chance to socialize with other furry friends — or maybe get a massage or something…

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If you visit Atlanta, don’t miss going to The Varsity, the world’s largest drive-in that has been in business since 1928.

It is located just across the interstate from Georgia Tech and has the old-timey feel of a hot dog/hamburger/shake place where you can get curbside service or go inside and the wait staff will typically yell out “What’ll ya have?” as you enter.

As we finally made it up to the counter on this trip to give them our order for one of those splurge meals, I couldn’t help but notice a sign that stated: “We use Rice Bran oil. It’s the world healthiest cooking oil.”

That made me feel so much better when I ordered the combo of a chill cheeseburger, chili hot dog, onion rings and a big orange drink to wash it all down.

Oh, and then there was the Frosted Orange shake.

Besides the added benefit of the healthy cooking oil, it’s an experience you won’t forget.