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Community : Top Stories Last Updated: Oct 3, 2012 - 9:31:24 AM

Harvest Tour of Homes to reap benefits for DI Library
By Elizabeth Bush
Oct 3, 2012 - 9:17:54 AM

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This coastal-inspired home is located in Smythe Park near the banks of the Wando River.
This Center Park townhome features a lovely, walled garden evocative of old Charleston.
Located in Daniel Island Park, this stately property is personalized by the owner's interests and involvement with all phases of its design.
This picturesque home in Daniel Island Park boasts classic architecture, golf course views, and specially decorated children's rooms.

The next time you pull a book title from the new shelves at the Daniel Island Library, take a seat in the facility’s community room, gather around a table in the teen area, pick up a well researched book club kit, or watch a young child find a cozy spot on the colorful rug in the children’s section  – you can thank the Daniel Island Friends of the Library (FOL). Each purchase was made possible through proceeds from the FOL’s annual Harvest Tour of Homes on Daniel Island.  Since the tour began in 2008, close to $60,000 has been raised to benefit the library and its patrons.
“We are so lucky to have this generous support for our local library,” said Abbey Adams, branch manager. “Our goal is to make the library the first place people go for information and entertainment and the support from the Tour has been instrumental in making this library a wonderfully inviting community gathering spot.”
Proceeds from the Tour have also been used to fund enhancements to the reference section, a drive-up book return box in the parking lot, a gleaming new display case for the Daniel Island Historical Society, and a leaf blower for property maintenance. Soon, new outdoor benches and trashcans will also be installed as a direct result of Harvest Tour dollars. This year’s event will take place this Saturday, October 6, from 1 to 4 pm, and organizers are hoping the community comes out once again in full force to support their local library.  
“We are so lucky to have this little gem of a library, a place where there is something for everyone,” said Vicki Danziger, who is co-chairing the Harvest Tour along with island resident Mary Ann Solberg.
“There are really some unique benefits of the Tour,” added Solberg. “It allows the Friends of the Library to do all of the unique things we have done for the library…We wouldn’t have the size collection we have without all those additional shelves…We started with a small amount (of funds raised) and it just keeps going up. And that’s in no small measure thanks to our sponsors.”
 Solberg is particularly thrilled that the Tour has been able to provide book club kits to the library.
“We have many, many book clubs on the island,” she said. “The more I investigate the more shocked I am! With the kits, the library can order copies (of requested books) and search for discussion questions. Then they put it all in a box and a book club can check that out. It’s very easy and of course it saves book club members money. Three of the book clubs on the island decided to become sponsors of our Tour this year because they so appreciate that they don’t have to go out and buy the books!”
One of those thankful book club members is island resident Deidre Schipani, who is happy that her book club can support this year’s Harvest Tour.
“It’s a no brainer because everyone in the book club really enjoys books and enjoys reading,” she said. “And I think they’re committed to what libraries can do, and to what they mean to a community in terms of being a gathering point.  It really brings a community together...There is really no greater gift and it goes across every economic indicator…We’re certainly aware in Charleston and in Berkeley County that there are some serious budget Issues with our libraries…. Daniel Island has just been phenomenal in how the community comes out in support of the Harvest Tour.”
Each year the Tour features several Daniel Island homes, with varying styles, and a chance to “meet and greet” local authors at each location. This year’s event will showcase a home on the Wando River in Smythe Park, a townhome in Center Park, and two homes in Daniel Island Park – a classic, custom home on the golf course and a spacious property for a family with young children.
“As an interior designer, I thought this fundraiser would be right up my alley,” added Danziger, when deciding to come on board as a volunteer for the event. “What I love is that a person can spend $20 (for a ticket) and come away with ideas for their home, armed with colors for walls as well as tile and counter (selections).”
Literary guests include local executive chef Frank McMahon, author of Cool Inside: Hank’s Seafood; Brad Crowther, author of the Charleston mystery novel The Ninth Man; Nichole Seitz, author of the Lowcountry romance Beyond Molasses Creek; and children’s book authors Megan Waldrep and Melissa Nelson, who penned Spice and Little Sugar, a story about big and little sister rivalry. The authors will also be available to sign copies of their books, which can be purchased at the event.
“We have again great variety!” said Solberg of the Tour’s literary offerings. “We have romance and mystery…and a chef! Not only do we have a cookbook, but we have the actual chef. And of course he is magnificent in the kitchen. We have children’s book authors in the children’s home, so that’s always fun. And children’s books are very popular and make a great holiday gift.”    
With multiple sponsors for the 2012 Harvest Tour, Solberg also wanted to be sure to recognize the businesses that have stepped up to show their support.  
“It’s just quite amazing to me all of the businesses that say ‘yes, we value the library and we are here to support it’,” she said. “We are really blessed.”
Schipani, a frequent user of the library’s many resources, couldn’t agree more.
“We can see what our support does,” she said. “Each time we walk into that library we see the consequences of that money.”
Tickets for the Harvest Tour of Homes are $20 each and can be purchased in advance at the following locations:  Island Expressions and Sun Trust Bank on Daniel Island, and Zinnia in the Belle Hall Shopping Center in Mount Pleasant. Tickets can also be obtained from House Tour Committee members. In addition, tickets will be available on the day of the Tour for $25 at the Daniel Island Library, 2301 Daniel Island Drive. All proceeds of the Harvest Tour remain on the island to benefit the Daniel Island Library and its resources. A map to Tour homes will be provided in the ticket package. For additional information, visit


Brad Crowther
The 2010 winner of the Black Orchid Novella Award, Brad Crowther is a South Carolina fiction writer and consultant. His suspense novel, The Ninth Man, blends fictional murders in modern-day Charleston with the true mystery surrounding the disappearance of the Confederate submarine The Hunley in Charleston Harbor during the Civil War.  Brad is a member of Mystery Writers of
America, International Thriller Writers, and the International Association of Crime Writers.

Nicole Seitz
An artist, author and speaker, Hilton Head native Nicole Seitz is deeply influenced by her faith and the mystique and charm of the Lowcountry – themes that can often be found in her work.  Many of her novels also feature her own paintings and illustrations. Her newest book, a romance novel, is entitled Beyond Molasses Creek.

Chef Frank McMahon
Lowcountry Executive Chef Frank McMahon brings his distinctive culinary talents to the tables each and every day at Hank’s Seafood, which opened to widespread acclaim in downtown Charleston in 1999. That same year, Hank’s, a modern day adaptation of a Charleston fish house, was named one of “America’s best new restaurants” by Esquire magazine. A native of Ireland, McMahon is the author of
the cookbook, Cool Inside: Hank’s Seafood Restaurant.

Megan Waldrep and Melissa Nelson
As the designer of a children’s clothing line, Megan Waldrep knows how to tap into her inner creativity to craft memorable, fun, and inspiring pieces. It should come as no surprise then that she decided to use that same ability to dive into another venture – writing! Her latest book, Spice & Little Sugar, is a charming story based on actual events depicting the annoyances and love found between sisters. Megan co-authored the book with Melissa Nelson, who co-owns a pediatric therapy company in Charleston.

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