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Employees share CEO’s passion for service area

Article was added on Monday, November 06, 2017

I recently wrote a column about how much "I love this place." I also reached out to our employees and was overwhelmed by the passion the talented individuals who help keep the lights on at SEC also have for this place. It was very difficult to choose, but here are a few excerpts from what I received:

Dalvin Williams serves as one of our dispatchers. I knew he was good at his job, but I had no idea that he could use words to paint a picture of fishing in salt water as well as Pat Conroy!

"My favorite salt fishing area is the Shell Banks. I like to go by the Ice House in Georgetown and get a few pounds of fresh shrimp and some coffee before proceeding to the South Island Ferry Boat Ramp. Once in the bay, the wind can get strong, so hold on and enjoy the ride and the scene of the marsh lands for a few miles out. You may see everything from dolphins jumping to sharks and gators cruising the water along your way. There's a special location where my uncle and I normally anchor down around 6:45 a.m. We each put out two or three rods and usually catch a mixture of spot tail, flounder, whiting, and even shark. Whether catching fish or not, high tide or low, it's always a great experience," Dalvin said.

Kevin Myers serves in our Engineering Department maintaining the accuracy of our mapping in the field. Reading his description of his favorite restaurant makes me wish the lunch hour would hurry up and get here!

"Scranton Café (or The Café, as it's referred to by locals) is a staple of the community. As a young boy, I really enjoyed the service and hospitality shown by Mrs. Hazel. Today, 23 years later, she and the rest of the staff still make me feel at home. The Café is also very special to me because it serves as the venue for my 'daddy-daughter date' with Olive. As the old adage says, food is love. The past four generations of my family have shared joyous moments around their tables. One of my favorites is the breakfast ham, egg, and cheese sandwich with mayonnaise.  The way the cheese melts to blend with the mayo is astounding! I also like to use their famous corn bread fritters to 'sop-up' the beef stew gravy. The Café is a must-try for any connoisseur of southern soul food," Kevin said.

Marion Evans has spent many years taking on the arduous task of maintaining SEC's 5,500 miles of right-of-way. He's passionate about clearing trees from the power lines and just as passionate about his favorite fishing:

"The time is May. The place is Black River above Kingstree. The reason is Red Breast! 'Shoot' the cricket close to the bank, let it drop down to the bottom and the best ounce for ounce fight is close at hand. You will feel a bump then when the stopper goes out of sight - BAM - it's on now! Oh man the first Red Breast of the year and it must be close to a pound...when he gets close to the top and rolls over to show you his color you know that is a Granddaddy! Now if you really want to draw out the Great Granddaddys, find a Catawba tree full of worms. A wooden match stick, the right twist and you have just 'turned' a Catawba worm creating filet mignon for the best of the best in Black River Red Breast fishing. Fish this close to a log pile near the bottom and you will be cleaning fish a while," Marion said.

These are only small portions of what Dalvin, Kevin, and Marion sent in. The full submissions are below.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year in the service area we all love so much! May God bless you and your families.                                              

Robert G. Ardis III
President and Chief Executive Officer

 

Dalvin Williams:

My favorite Salt Fishing area are the "SHELL BANKS".. I like to go by the Ice House in Georgetown and get a few pounds of fresh shrimp and some coffee, and proceed the boat landing at the South Island Ferry Boat Ramp. The shrimp are frozen at times so we put them in the (live well).  Once in the bay the wind can get strong, so hold on enjoy the ride of a few miles out and the scenes of the marsh lands.. You may see dolphins jumping out of the water to sharks and gators cruisng the water. There is a location down fron the #4 where my uncle and I normally start about 6:45 a.m we anchor down. As we cast about 2-3 reels a piece we are sure to catch at least 4 to 5 different species. From Red Drum,Flounder,Spot Tail, Red Fish,Whiting,even Shark..I've also caught a few Bass and Weak Fish before. I'm never disappointed when we are on the water it's too relaxing .Wheather catching fish or not,high tide or low tide it's always a great experience..If you ever get an oppurtunity and wanting to hit waters try the area sometimes South Santee, or North Santee its worth "The Catch"...

I like this local Italian place located in Georgetown,S.C a family oriented place called Diangelo's Italian Restaurant. Oh my God the Chicken Alfredo!!! I chose this place because the atmosphere is so elegant and pleasant.. There will be some jazz playing in the background and the lighting will be perfect. Customer service is superb. The owner actaully does the cooking and really there are no complaints. When you can have someone serve you with a spirit of excellence there are no flaws.. I like the Chicken Alfredo with extra spinach. The chicken is pan seared , then with a light carmelization to it they add alfredo sauce and fresh sauteed spinach .. It always tastes the same.. The noodles are homemade .This meal is always made from scratch with home made garlic rolls and butter. You won't get a small portion either. If you like Italian as you can see that I do, I would suggest this warm spirited, elegant restaruant where the people treat you like family.. 

 

 Kevin Myers:

"The Café" as it's referred to by locals is a staple of the community. It is the meeting place or cornerstone of Scranton and its surrounding areas. As you enter the quaint interior from the very narrow sidewalk, you're immediately greeted with "hey, how are you?" or "how y'all doing?". The dining area is very small. However, what is lacks in square feet is compensated for by the sincere hospitality one receives while dining. There's a real sense of community and family inside The Café. As a young boy I really enjoyed the service and hospitality shown by Mrs. Hazel. Today, 23 years later she and the rest of the staff still make me feel like I'm home when I step inside. The Café is also very special to me because it serves as the venue for my daughter Olive and my "daddy-daughter date." The old adage says that food is love. With that said, the past four generations of my family have shared joyous moments around our dinner table while devouring their celebrated recipes. A few favorites include the breakfast ham, egg, and cheese sandwich with mayonnaise. The way the cheese melts to blend with the mayonnaise is astounding. The lunch menu has numerous options and variations to make a plate exactly as you prefer. However, my lunch plate will forever remain the same. The beef stew over rice, butter beans, and potato salad will always be my go-to. As any soul-food lover would, I always use their infamous cornbread fritters to "sop up" the beef stew gravy. The Café is a must try for any connoisseur of southern soul food.

Bennies Landing on Lynches River

Lynches River was a large part of my youth and continues to influence my life today. As a boy I remember my uncle taking my cousin, my brother, and I to the sandbar on a hot summer day to cool off. I can remember my grandfather leaving his truck in neutral while launching his boat into the Lynches River. Unfortunately, he lost his truck and trailer but it still makes for a great story. The memories I cherish most are those of my father and I with our one-man Warrior boats "putting in" at Bennie's Landing. The cool, clean, damp morning air always set the vibe for a wonderful day.

The beauty of Lynches River allows your mind to decompress and suddenly you're just there in nature, enveloped in her beauty. Catching a beautiful bluegill or redbreast wasn't a requisite for fun. However, it certainly felt good to open the livewell and pull out a larger fish than my Dad caught. He taught me at a very young age to throw a beetle spin. I take pride in my ability to throw into a tight spot on the river bank. Most often, the largest panfish find protection and will take shelter in these nooks and crannies. We both rely on a black beetle spin with red or green legs to get the fish from the river into the grease.

I've always been fascinated with the Bald Cypress trees that fill the swamps and banks of the Lynches. The way the dark water meanders through the knees of a Cypress creating soft running water tones is very soothing. Or the way the current cuts through the landscape depositing sediment creating sandbars and steep riverbanks is marvelous. Take an afternoon to relax and decompress at Bennie's Landing. You won't regret it. 


Marion Evans:

The time is May. The place is Black River above Kingstree. The reason is Red Breast! 

Mid morning with a one or two man boat, cricket bucket, paddle, and a 7 foot cane or a bream buster, you are setting yourself up for a good day on the river.  When the river is in its banks good and you smell the brim beds, throw or 'shoot' the cricket close to the bank let it drop down to the bottom and the best ounce for ounce fight is close at hand.  You will feel a bump then when the stopper goes out of sight - BAM - it's on now! Oh man the first Red Breast of the year and it must be close to a pound...when he gets close to the top and rolls over to show you his color you know that is a Granddaddy! So as to save the seed, you don't want to catch but a few out of each hole then go up the river a little further to another tried and true spot. 

 A faster way to catch these red throated rockets is with a rod and reel using a beetle spin. One that is a hit has a gold spoon with a bright green jig.  Now if you really want to draw out the Great Granddaddys, find a catawba tree full of catawba worms.  A wooden match stick, the right twist and you have just 'turned' a catawba worm creating filet mignon for the best of the best in Black River Red Breast fishing. Fish this close to a log pile near the bottom and you will be cleaning fish a while.

Catching the fish is one thing but eating what you caught is the other half of the deal. Take a frying pan with you (Russell Cooper sells some nice ones at Cooper's Country Store) and some dry wood to get a fire going, 4 bricks to put the pan on, some grease, corn meal, salt and pepper. Set up on a sand bar in the river if you can, get your fire going so while you are cleaning the fish your coals are getting right. Oh yeah take some light bread with you too. 

As with anything you can enjoy this experience better if you take a family member or a friend. You can't 'text' a fish in the boat. You teach a boy or girl how to fish, they have memories for a lifetime. Kingstree --- The Sportsmans' Paradise! Old fishing holes seldom used any more in our fast paced lives - The Seine Yard, the High Bank, the Hanging Rock, Canoe Lake, Home Lake, the Mule Pen, Stephens Lake, Sanders Lake, Brewington Lake, the Mossy Alligator Lake, and a few more 'secret fishing holes' created a lifetime of enjoyment and wonderful memories for this writer.




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