If/Then Singing Contest Finalists Announced! Vote For Your Favorite to Win!

first_imgANALISE RIOSBronx, New York <a data-cke-saved-href="https://broadway.wufoo.com/forms/mxmrpiy03ds8fm/" href="https://broadway.wufoo.com/forms/mxmrpiy03ds8fm/">Fill out my Wufoo form!</a> After hours upon hours of big belting and big deliberation, the Broadway.com editorial team is ready to reveal the five finalists for our If/Then singing contest. Now it’s up to YOU to pick the winner! Watch the five finalist renditions of “Always Starting Over,” the big eleven o’clock number of the hit Broadway musical that is hitting the road next week, and then vote for the best (voting ends Tuesday, October 13 at 5PM EST). The winner will receive a trip to the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, CA to see the show live and a special If/Then prize pack. Thanks to everyone who entered!JENNIFER LAFRENIEREProspect, Connecticut View Comments MEGAN ROZAKBuffalo, New York NICK MULLINSManchester, Tennessee LISA-MARIE LEGGHaines City, Floridalast_img read more

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Timothy Ware Will Star as Lola in the Kinky Boots Tour

first_imgTimothy Ware Everybody say yeah! Timothy Ware has been cast as Simon/Lola for the third year of the national tour of Harvey Fierstein and Cyndi Lauper’s Tony-winning musical Kinky Boots. Ware will begin headlining the high-heeled and fabulous show on February 28 when Kinky Boots plays Spokane’s INB Performing Arts Center.Ware was the Lola standby on Broadway where he performed the role 186 times. He’s previously been seen across the country in the national tours of Mamma Mia! and Jesus Christ Superstar.Also featured in the Kinky Boots tour is Curt Hansen as shoe factory owner Charlie Price, Rose Hemingway as Lauren, Aaron Walpole as Don, Katerina Papacostas as Nicola and Jim J. Bullock as George.Rounding out the ensemble are Meryn Beckett, Joseph Anthony Byrd, Justin Colombo, Tami Dahbura, Tony d’Alelio, Alfred DalPino, John J. Dempsey, Madge Dietrich, Alex Dreschke, Ian Gallagher Fitzgerald, Gavin Gregory, Landon Maas, Sebastian Maynard-Palmer, Ciarán McCarthy, Julia McLellan, Jacob Morrell, Mary Mossberg, Christian Mullins, Erica Peck, Xavier Reyes, Andy Richardson, Casi Riegle, Tom Souhrada, Dan Tracy, Robert Zelaya and Sam Zeller.Directed and choreographed by Tony winner Jerry Mitchell, Kinky Boots opened on Broadway on April 4, 2013 and continues to play at the Hirschfeld Theatre. The musical took home six 2013 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score (Lauper), Best Choreography (Mitchell), Best Orchestrations and Best Sound Design.In Kinky Boots, Charlie Price has reluctantly inherited his father’s shoe factory, which is on the verge of bankruptcy. Trying to live up to his father’s legacy and save his family business, Charlie finds inspiration in the form of Lola. A fabulous entertainer in need of some sturdy stilettos, Lola turns out to be the one person who can help Charlie become the man he’s meant to be. As they work to turn the factory around, this unlikely pair finds that they have more in common than they ever dreamed possible…and discovers that when you change your mind about someone, you can change your whole world. View Commentslast_img read more

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Termite Time

first_img Scott Bauer, USDA, contact the USDA photo unit for high-res images Termite alaltes, also known as swarmers Swarming termites aren’t a signal to be frantic, says a University of Georgia scientist. It’s a time to make deliberate, careful termite control decisions. Many pest control companies are pushing termite baits as a new, easy way to kill termites. But they’re not a silver bullet, Forschler said. “There are no silver bullets when it comes to termite control,” he said. Forschler has tested termite control tactics, including the bait systems, in his labs. From what he’s seen, he’s not comfortable with relying solely on the popular baits or any other single control method. He tells homeowners to ask their pest control operator to use a combination of methods. Use all the tools available Scott Bauer, USDA, contact the USDA photo unit for high-res images Scott Bauer, USDA, contact the USDA photo unit for high-res images Termite fighting tactics Safety is important “Most termite damage is not sudden and catastrophic,” Forschler said. “Talk to several pest control firms. Weigh the control options, and look at price and contracts.” Termite control, he said, is more art than science. “Despite the best intentions, termite damage can still occur,” he said. “Read your contract carefully. Be sure of what kind of warranty is offered. And try to lock in a renewal rate for future years.” Termite society “If you see a swarm in your house, don’t panic,” said Brian Forschler, an entomologist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. Most termites native to Georgia will be swarming from now until early June, he said. They swarm when a percentage of the termites within a population become adults and fly away to start a new colony. Controlling termites DEFENDING THE NEST Damage to a nest of formosan subterranean termites brings hoards of workers and soldiers scrambling to repair the hole. Termites shown are four times actual size. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which is responsible for pesticide registration, is playing catch-up with the new technology, he said. The EPA has ruled the baits environmentally safe. The agency hasn’t ruled on how well they work. “By the end of this year they will issue a standard for efficacy testing of termite baits which will be required by all termite bait registrants,” Forschler said. “The currently registered termite baits will have to meet this new standard of efficacy to keep their current registrations.” MAKING A MEAL OF PAPER Formosan subterranean termites are shown feeding on sudan-red stained filter paper. “Termite control professionals have a variety of tools in their toolbox,” he said. There are wood treatments, soil treatments, baits and moisture control. The best control involves all four.” Forschler said companies began marketing the new termite baits several years ago, and the pest control industry has quickly adopted this new technology. “Termite baiting tactics are less time-consuming to install, compared to conventional soil treatments,” Forschler said. “And they’re often less intrusive to the homeowner.” The termite baits appeal to homeowners, too, because they’re promoted as being environmentally friendly, he said The product literature provided with some termite baits, he said, contains misleading information on termite biology. And he should know. Forschler has been studying termites in Georgia for the past eight years. “The complex social structure of termites and their hidden lifestyle make them hard to study,” he said. “Yet, every year, termite researchers around the country are making new discoveries concerning termites.” Forschler said the way a home is built may contribute to termite problems. “A hundred years ago, houses were built off the ground so the wood was dry, and builders used wood termites don’t like to eat,” he said. “In the ’50s, chemicals were trusted so much that home builders didn’t worry about building in ways that protect the house from termites.” That trend, he said, has gotten worse. “Houses today are built of materials that make great termite food. And they’re often built in ways that invite termites,” he said.last_img read more

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Dabbling with dahlias

first_imgBy Paul A. ThomasUniversity of GeorgiaIn the 16th century, Spanish conquistadors in Guatemala andMexico found that dahlias were favorite flowers among the Aztecpeople. They’re still among the most spectacular plants you cangrow in the garden.Hundreds of varieties have flowers ranging from 1 to 14 inchesacross on plants from 1 to 8 feet tall. Dahlias can give youalmost any color of bloom you want in Georgia except true blue.Treated properly, Dahlias grow very well in north Georgia and thestate’s piedmont area. They’re harder to grow in the southGeorgia coastal plain because of its longer period of high summerheat.To grow dahlias, consider first how much space you’re willing todedicate to them, since they grow up to 8 feet tall. Typicalplants are 3 to 5 feet tall.Most catalogs and specialist nurseries also classify dahlias bysuch things as early, typical or late blooming and whetherthey’re best for cut flowers or exhibition blooms. For a morein-depth breakdown, consult the Dahlia Society of Georgia (www.dahliasocietyofgeorgia.com)or American Dahlia Society (www.dahlia.org) or a catalog.When to plantDahlia tubers are typically sold in later winter and spring. Manymail-order nurseries accept orders until late spring. Tubers areoften planted in April in south Georgia and May in north Georgia.June plantings often give the most perfect fall flowers.If you plant tubers early, you can take cuttings from them in Mayto produce a late-flowering crop.Dahlias thrive in the sun. They’ll do best if they get at least ahalf-day of direct sunlight. And they need at least six to eighthours of direct light produce good blooms.Seldom will plants do well in heavy shade or in competition withtrees. However, in the heat of the coastal plain, some shadingfrom the intense heat of the afternoon sun is a great benefit.Protection from high winds is helpful, too, as the plants put upa lot of tender top growth.The ideal soil for dahlias is one that’s loose, holds moisturewell and provides good aeration. The best pH is between 6.0 and6.5.When to feedDahlias are heavy feeders and develop large root systems. It’sbest to fertilize with liquid garden-plant food every four weeksby the manufacturer’s directions.You can use 10-10-10, but you must water it in and absolutelymust not let it touch the stems and leaves, as it will burn thetissues and invite disease. Don’t apply any fertilizer as the endof the season approaches.To plant dahlias, place the tubers 4 to 6 inches deep. Put thetubers on their sides with the eyes facing upward. Cover themwith 2 to 3 inches of soil. Be generous in spacing. Some of thesmall bedding varieties can be spaced 12 inches apart but usuallyrequire 2 feet on each side. The larger varieties need 3 to 4feet of space between plants.When the young plant has produced three or four pairs of leavesand is several inches high, pinch out the tip. This will causethe shoot to branch and produce side limbs.You’ll be in for a big disappointment if you don’t stake yourdahlias. Since many of the larger varieties grow tall, they can’tsupport themselves when they reach maturity.Make stakes 5 to 6 feet long and drive them about 1 foot into theground. When the plants are about a foot tall, tie them to thestakes with soft string or cloth strips. Repeat about once amonth as the plants grow taller. The limbs that bear the flowersespecially need support.To put dahlia flowers in a vase, cut them only in early morning(best) or late afternoon to prevent wilting. Place the flowers intepid water immediately after cutting.(Paul Thomas is a Cooperative Extension horticulturist withthe University of Georgia College of Agricultural andEnvironmental Sciences.)last_img read more

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Beef tips

first_img• Breeding new and improved Georgia forages. University of GeorgiaAnyone with hundreds of cattle or just a few is sure to benefit from the University of Georgia’s annual Mountain Beef Cattle Field Day April 18.The field day will start with 9 a.m. registration and end at 3:30 p.m. at the Georgia Mountain Research and Education Center in Blairsville, Ga.John Queen III, president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, will serve as the luncheon speaker. UGA scientists and industry experts will provide up-to-date, research-based information. This year’s topics include:• Fire ant biology and control in mountain pastures. • A pesticide calibration display. • Hay and pasture herbicides. • Using ultrasound data in cattle selection. • Visual selection of beef herd sires.center_img • Pesticide update for beef producers. • Cool-season grasses and clover evaluations. • UGA stocker research update. There is no charge for the field day, and lunch and refreshments will be provided. The field day is sponsored in part by DuPont Crop Protection and AgGeorgia Farm Credit. For more information, call (706) 745-2655.last_img read more

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Ag, forestry transfers

first_imgBy Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaTransfer students planning to enroll in specific programs at the University of Georgia for the fall semester may get priority treatment. Those who transfer to the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources may get notification of a decision from the admissions office by early April.Prospective transfer students to these two schools with a minimum of 45 transferrable semester credit hours and at least a 2.8 transfer grade point average at the beginning of spring semester will be eligible for admission fall semester, according to Josef Broder, CAES associate dean of academic affairs.”These students must complete 60 transferrable semester credit hours with a minimum of a 2.5 GPA by the end of spring semester to be eligible,” Broder said.Eligible students must meet the Feb. 1 deadline for application and file completion, including transcripts of all college courses. A followup transcript of courses taken in spring semester must be submitted by June 1.”Admission will be based on space availability,” Broder said. “Qualified transfer applicants who meet the Feb. 1 application and file-completion deadline and designate their preferred major in CAES or WSFNR will receive priority notification from the admissions office by early April.”CAES and the WSFNR offer unique degree programs in Georgia and have the capacity for additional transfer students.This priority admission process will enable a more timely transfer of students into these programs. For an online list of available study programs, visit the CAES and WSFNR Web sites at www.caes.uga.edu and www.forestry.uga.edu.”Prospective transfer applicants are advised to submit their transcript requests early to be sure that the transcripts are received by the Feb. 1 file-completion deadline,” Broder said.The transfer application for Fall 2008 should be available by late October at www.admissions.uga.edu. For more information, call (706) 542-1611.(Brad Haire is a news editor with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

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Lawn Repair

first_imgMany view fall as the time to pack up the lawn mower and give the lawn a rest. Fall is actually the best time to evaluate cool-season grasses, like tall fescue, that have just experienced high, summer temperatures. Take a walk around your lawn. How happy are you with your grass? Are there bare spots? How much of a problem were weeds this summer? And most importantly, how much time and money are you willing to put towards improving your lawn? If you find yourself ready to make improvements, it might be time for a tall fescue rescue. The period between mid-September through mid-October is the perfect time for this project. You can plant tall fescue into November, but you will probably have better results earlier in the fall.Renovation stepsThe first step in any lawn renovation is to get a soil test. Your local University of Georgia Cooperative Extension office provides this service for a small fee. The information provided in a soil test report is well worth that investment. You will receive a profile of your soil fertility along with recommendations on how to improve it. While you wait for the soil test results, remove as many weeds as possible. You may be able to do this by hand. It is important to remove as many of the roots as possible. If you choose to use a selective herbicide, read the label carefully and understand what the product does. Be aware of any residual activity and plant-back restrictions. You do not want to put seed on an area where the herbicide may prevent germination. Next, prepare to plant the seed. Mow the grass low, to about 1.5 to 2 inches. Bag the clippings to get them off the lawn. Use a lawn rake to remove any dead grass or debris lying on the grass. The low mowing height and aggressive raking may cause the lawn to look bad, but the goal is allow the grass seeds to reach the soil. Now aerate the grass. Aerating removes plugs of soil, opening air holes. It allows air and water to get to the roots of the grass more readily and gives roots some room to spread out. The plugs, or cores, will disappear after a couple of mowings or rains. A lawn service can aerate the lawn for you. If you prefer to do it yourself, aerators are available for rent at rental equipment centers and hardware stores. Choosing seedChoose seed carefully and become an avid bag reader. Look for the blue tag on the seed bag. This indicates that the seed is certified and ensures the seed is pure and free of noxious weeds. Make sure you buy the type of seed you want. Sometimes tall fescue seed is mixed with other cool-season grass seed such as Kentucky bluegrass. This will be indicated on the seed tag. Be realistic with the project. If fescue hasn’t grown under your oak trees before, it probably won’t now. You can plant seed directly into a thin lawn, which is called interseeding. Lawns can be interseeded with 2 to 5 pounds of seed per 1,000 square foot. To ensure even coverage, use a broadcast spreader. Be careful not to apply too much seed. If too many seeds sprout they will compete with each other for light, water, space and nutrients. This results in unhealthy grass and possible pest problems. For larger bare areas, top the seedbed with a light layer of compost and pack it down. Consider using a light straw mulch. With deliberate care after seeding, in four to six weeks you should see the benefits of your renovation project in a fuller, healthier fescue lawn. For more information on growing and maintaining turfgrass lawns in Georgia, go to www.GeorgiaTurf.com.last_img read more

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New development director

first_imgRobert K. Cooper will return to the University of Georgia March 14 as senior development officer and assistant to the dean for external affairs in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences’ Office of College Advancement, J. Scott Angle, CAES dean and director, and Brooks McCommons, senior director of the UGA Office of Development, announced today. “Rob is a proven, successful fundraiser in our industry,” Angle said. “In these tight budget times he’s the perfect person to help our college fund new opportunities for our students, our researchers and our extension programs.” Cooper was previously executive director of the National FFA Foundation headquartered in Indianapolis, Ind., where he served as the chief executive of the foundation. He was responsible for overall fundraising strategies, achievement of the foundation’s mission and vision and overall strategic development.Before joining the National FFA Foundation, Cooper was director of development for the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. He was responsible for overall management of fundraising ventures and alumni relations.“It’s nice to come back to a place I consider home with fresh ideas and new experiences to apply to an institution I firmly believe in,” Cooper said. “The world-class work of this college is the future of agriculture, and I’m thrilled to have an important role to play in helping them secure that future.” Previously, Cooper was director of development at the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. He has held titles of executive director of the Maryland 4-H Foundation in College Park, Md., and director of development for the National 4-H Council in Chevy Chase, Md.He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Delaware in Newark, Del.His wife Linda is a teacher with Oconee County Schools in Watkinsville, Ga.last_img read more

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Medicinal Herbs

first_imgMany gardeners keep an herb garden to stock their kitchens with parsley, thyme and cilantro. That same herb garden can turn out tasty, healthful teas.Noelle Fuller, an herbalist and horticulturist who manages the medicinal herb garden at UGA’s student-run farm, UGArden, is on a quest to demystify medicinal herbs and to help more people grow their own.Fuller, a trained herbalist who received a bachelor’s degree in nutrition science and a master’s degree in horticulture from UGA, works with students at UGArden to produce medicinal teas that are sold across campus.She wants gardeners to branch out from the culinary herbs. Gardeners may be familiar with popular herb teas like chamomile and mint, but Fuller encourages them to try growing some other herbs and flowers, like holy basil, passion flower, roses and hibiscus, all of which are known for their calming, immune-boosting and antioxidant properties. They’re easy to grow in Georgia and can provide a more relaxing alternative to coffee when brewed with tea.Fuller and her team of volunteers grow more than 50 medicinal plants in their plot at UGArden, and she has a few pointers for those who want to start propagating their own medicinal plants at home.First, gardeners should talk to their doctors to make sure there are no herbs that could interact with their medications.Second, gardeners should try growing a few different herbs before they invest a lot of effort into growing a particular crop.“Think about what herbs (you) enjoy already,” Fuller said. “It would be a shame if you started to grow something and realized you didn’t really enjoy drinking it.”Hibiscus, which can be grown as annual in Georgia, is known for its high antioxidant content, Fuller said. Gardeners should harvest the calyx, or the covering around the seedpod, for teas.“Hibiscus is a beautiful plant, and it’s a wonderful herb,” Fuller said. “A lot of people have had red zinger tea before, and hibiscus is responsible for that tart flavor and red color, and it’s packed with vitamin C.”You can also eat the hibiscus’s leaves, which are a bit tart, in salads, Fuller said.Roses are another antioxidant plant, but it’s important to remember that many modern hybrid roses do not have the same medicinal value as older varieties. Look for highly fragrant roses that have not been sprayed. Both rose petals and rose hips, the fruit of the plant, have antioxidant properties.Holy basil, the plant Fuller studied for her master’s thesis, grows exactly like culinary basil varieties and helps reduce the negative effects of stress. It has a slight licorice and clove flavor and is Fuller’s top pick for new herb growers.Third, gardeners should skip the sprays. Gardeners should protect their herbs from herbicides and pesticides because any residue left on the herbs will likely be concentrated when it’s brewed into tea.“At the herb garden at UGA, we don’t spray anything, not even pesticides approved for organic use, because we really don’t want any residue on our medicinal plants,” Fuller said. “If it gets a fungus or dies back or isn’t doing well, we’ll move it. If that doesn’t work, we just won’t grow it.”For gardeners growing herbs in suburban or urban environments, this can also mean protecting your herbs from sprays applied by neighbors.“You want to be sure that no one else is spraying your herbs and that there is no runoff of lawn chemicals,” Fuller said.Fourth, herbs benefit from a little neglect. Medicinal herbs produce their healthful compounds in response to plant stress, so plants that are a little water stressed or undergoing some insect pressure will make for more potent herbs.“Plants produce more medicinal compounds in response to stress, and it winds up being more flavorful and medicinal for us,” she said.Fifth, harvest your herbs often and clip about 6 to 8 inches from the ground, allowing the herbs to rebound after each harvest.Finally, harvest and brew tea immediately or dry the harvest for later using a drying rack or a food dehydrator.As a general guideline, Fuller brews her herbal teas by putting 1 to 3 teaspoons of dried herbs or a handful of fresh herbs with 8 ounces of boiling water, then steeps it for 15 minutes. If she wants it stronger, she will let it steep for longer, a few hours or sometimes overnight.“Really, the strength of the tea you brew totally depends on the person,” she said. “Some people like it strong, but I have a friend who dilutes the tea I make with four times the water that I would use.”For more information, visit www.youtube.com/channel/UC0rufIE89uMT6r_2fyjIKMQ to see videos of Fuller working in the UGArden’s medicinal herb garden.last_img read more

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‘Automower’

first_imgTo some, mowing the lawn is an enjoyable, almost therapeutic, task. To others, it’s a task they dread. For those, a new battery-operated mower, much like the popular Rumba vacuum cleaner, may be the product of your dreams.“The ‘automower’ actually isn’t a new concept. They’ve been used in Europe for a few years, but they haven’t been widely adopted in the U.S. to this point,” said University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Turfgrass Specialist Clint Waltz. Waltz is currently using an “automower” on the lawn just outside the new UGA Turfgrass Research Facility on the UGA Griffin campus. The Husqvarna mower is on loan from Georgia sod producer Super-Sod, so Waltz can observe and evaluate the concept of “continual” mowing, he said.Since putting the futuristic-looking mower to work the third week of August, Waltz thinks the mower has “great potential” for residential and commercial lawncare. The battery-powered device sets out to mow and returns to its charger when it needs “refueling.”When it comes to environmental impact, the “automower” doesn’t use fossil fuels and doesn’t stir up dust like conventional mowers. Maintenance costs do not include oil changes or new spark plugs; it only needs new blades every three to four months at a cost of about $20.With labor being the biggest challenge in the landscape industry today, the “automower” may fill a need, Waltz said.“When labor becomes difficult to find, or too expensive, innovation occurs. The ‘automower’ doesn’t stay home from work because of a case of brown bottle flu or complain to the department of labor about its continuous working schedule,” Waltz said.The small mower uses several tiny razor blades, similar to a double-sided utility knife, to cut grass. This “clean” cut of the leaf blade reduces loss of water and minimizes the opening for disease, he said. There’s no scalping of the turf, therefore, it’s a healthier grass plant“In tight areas of the lawn where a conventional mower may have to make multiple passes, compacting the soil and increasing traffic and wear, the ‘automower’ can mow more efficiently and decrease compaction,” he said.The auto-mower also reduces safety concerns for drivers of conventional mowers when mowing steep slopes or hard-to-mow areas. And, it can mow areas normally cleared with string trimmers.Since the mower removes no more than a third of the leaf at a single mowing, no thatch or surface clumps accumulate on the lawn.“This method of mowing also doesn’t overwhelm the soil microbes, making them more efficient at returning organic matter to plant-available nutrients,” Waltz said. That simply means there could be less need for fertilizer.So far, Waltz thinks the “automower” would be perfect for people who long for that “just mowed look.”“We are in a quality business. Turfgrass has to look good and perform,” he said. “Continual mowing removes seedheads more regularly or prevents them from fully developing. This alone leads to improved appearance because seedheads, or seed stalks, give a ‘stemy’ look that detracts from the lawn’s appearance.”Some “automower” models come with lights that could act as a wildlife deterrent, Waltz said.“The random mowing pattern may act as a deer deterrent within the landscape. It’s not substantiated, but there have been comments that landscapes with the ‘automower’ have fewer moles and voles,” he said.For now, the UGA Extension specialist is observing the device. “Potential research trials could develop such as the automower’s impact on disease, fertility and other management practices,” he said. “For now, it’s doing its job mowing and causing some second glances. It does bring with it a cool factor.”For more information on turfgrass research at UGA, go to www.GeorgiaTurf.com.last_img read more

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