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Elvis’ piano man – almost

It was without a doubt the best gig a gospel pianist could dream of: On the road with Elvis Presley. But Milton Smith never got to the first stop on that concert tour. After years of declining health and personal struggles had taken their toll, Elvis had left the building.

Food for thought

The job of feeding schoolchildren has changed with the times, but the goals have remained essentially the same: Healthy meals, satisfied appetites, and a friendly face ladling the soup.The …

J.R. Rodriguez was, literally, the oldest cat on the stage, and he was struck by the conversations he overheard among his younger castmates. The result is “Remember Yesterday,” a movie he directed that was recently an award winner at a film festival in Italy. The film will be screened Aug. 16 at Cameo Art House Theatre in downtown Fayetteville.

A suitable swimsuit

For those of us who live in the city that has already logged the hottest daily temperature in the state on multiple occasions this season, it is a safe bet that by the end of each week, every spare laundry room hook, bathroom shower rod and towel bar in our home will be draped with swimsuits of various shapes and sizes.

Heart to heart

Michelle Boyd’s mother knew what to do, even if her daughter wasn’t sure.Mom called 911.Boyd was in pain and on the brink of a heart attack.“I was lying down and I started getting …

Shining like a jewel

Ruby Murray could put the Energizer Bunny to shame.The retired Army sergeant major’s stamina and ability to excel at any project — referred to as a “mission” in military …

Salad days

As temperatures soar, our appetites often crave lighter fare. A bounty from the garden comes in all the colors of the rainbow. (And maybe toss in some crumbled feta and crispy bacon, too.) Where can we find the best salads locally? Here are some options.

Chill out at Smith Lake Beach

Fort Bragg’s Smith Lake Beach has a swimming area and water activities — including paddleboarding and pedal boats — for military families and their guests. The 67-acre, man-made lake features a full beach, an inflatable in-water obstacle course, kayaking, stand-up paddleboards and pedal boats.

Sometimes, we forget the simple charms of our city and let the hubbub of daily life distract us. Photographers Melissa Sue Gerrits and Tony Wooten ventured out to send us some reminders.

‘Build your own’

Who knew that a runny fried egg on a burger could be life-changing?One bite of the creation — with melted cheddar cheese, chipotle mayo, pickles and onions on a toasted, buttered bun — …

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