Pre-Valentine’s happenings: Get creative with gift-giving ideas, fun


Looking for some pre-Valentine’s Day opportunities?

Consider checking out ways to express your creativity along with your love or take a walk in downtown Braselton and make it a sweet chocolate treat.

Paintin’ and sippin’

Put your brush to the canvas and a wine glass or a bottled beverage to your lips at Sips n Strokes and create a special piece of art you can give to a Valentine or keep for yourself.

Hurry and pre-register at Sips n Strokes, located in Traditions Walk at 55 Freedom Parkway off Highway 124 in Hoschton, for the Feb. 5 Van Gogh sunflower session which begins at 7 p.m. On Saturday, you can opt for the 2-5 p.m. session with Colorful Stripes as the artistic creation or select from Martinis or Guitar in the session starting at 7 p.m. Sips n Strokes is a BYOB location. Also in advance of Valentine’s Day with pre-registration required, you could check out the Heart Cross happening on Feb. 9, Monogram Mania on Feb. 11, a Feb. 12 date night selection, Perfect Date Night on Feb. 13 or Feb. 14’s offerings of Love Birds at 2 p.m. or the 7 p.m. Perfect Date Night choice of Jeweled Stillettos or Guitar. Go to the www.sipsnstrokes.com/calendar for Hoschton or call 706-988-6902.

Chocolate shop & stroll

Get your ticket for $5 to reserve a special bag for Saturday’s Downtown Chocolate Walkin Braselton. Happening from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., you can stop into participating stores and pick up delicious chocolate treats will you shop the day away. Ticket information can be found at www.BraseltonChocolateWalk.eventbrite.com or contact downtown director Amy Pinnell at 706-684-0369 or email apinnell@braselton.net

Jewelry jamboree

Braselton Gallery, located at 36 Frances St., in downtown Braselton, is hosting a jewelry jamboree from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with local jewelry artists providing demonstrations. Lillian Hicks will be providing a “make and take” earring experience for $5 per pair. You can also purchase handmade jewelry pieces and other local and handcrafted unique gifts, perfect for Valentine’s Day gift giving. For more information, call 678-960-8977.



Health Matters: You can’t beat a healthy heart



For ClickThePaper.com



Cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 cause of death in men and women, and the South has the highest heart disease death rate in the United States. Each minute, someone in the United States dies from a heart disease-related event. High blood pressure, high LDL cholesterol and smoking are key risk factors for heart disease. About half of Americans have one of these three risk factors.

Knowing your risk and your health numbers related to heart disease is the first step in taking care of your heart. Here is a list of numbers you should aim for to reduce your risk of heart disease:

1) Blood pressure – The ideal blood pressure is 120/80 or below. Blood pressure should be checked at least two times a year starting at age 18. If a person’s blood pressure is high or irregular, then their blood pressure should be check more often.

2) Cholesterol – There are two types of cholesterol, the good and the bad. Both are important to check for a healthy heart. Total cholesterol should be less than 200mg/dL. The good cholesterol, HDL, should be 60mg/dL or higher and the bad cholesterol, LDL, should be 100mg/dL or lower. Cholesterol levels should be checked every four years starting at 20 years old. The levels should be checked more often if any of the values are out of range.

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Tammy Babb wins Jackson County’s Got Talent People’s Choice award

Tammy Babb, center, was the winner of the People's Choice trophy at Jackson County's Got Talent on Jan. 30. She is congratulated by fellow Rotarians Andy Garrison and Roy Plott. She competed on behalf of the Jefferson Rotary Club. See more scenes below in LeAnne Akin's photo gallery.

Tammy Babb, center, was the winner of the People’s Choice trophy at Jackson County’s Got Talent on Jan. 30. She is congratulated by fellow Rotarians Andy Garrison and Roy Plott. She competed on behalf of the Jefferson Rotary Club. See more scenes below in LeAnne Akin’s photo gallery.

Tammy Babb, who represented the Rotary Club of Jefferson, was the People’s Choice winner of Jackson County’s Got Talent held Jan. 30 at the Jefferson Civic Center.

Jeff Killip returned as master of ceremonies.

Babb’s vocal performance was a crowd-pleaser and she received 1,187 votes to take the top trophy in the fundraiser for the Jackson County Arts Council.

The money for ballots will be halved between the arts council and the nonprofit for which the participants competed, explained JCAC president Teddie Lohmeier, who invited the crowd to see the lobby displays for the participating nonprofits. She and Killip encouraged support of the sponsors of the event.

In second place for the People’s Choice honors was vocalist McKenna Brandenburg, who represented Main Street Braselton. She received 860 votes.

In third place were the Senior 1 Company dancers from Commerce School of Dance, which participated for the Commerce Library. The dancers got 790.24 votes.

Also competing was Jenny Ray, who danced for Hope Resource Center; Mac McKenzie, who sang on behalf of Piedmont CASA; and the East Jackson Comprehensive High School Dazzlers Dance Team which competed for the team.

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Just in time for Valentine’s: Chateau Elan special offerings


Just in time for Valentine’s weekend, Château Élan is offering several overnight packages – including a premium champagne tasting experience package – and special menus at the onsite restaurants.

The Fleur de Lis Valentine’s menu includes grilled beef tenderloin, sautéed scampi or an herb-roasted chicken breast after a soup appetizer followed by seared scallops. Dessert is appropriate for the special occasion with pra­line dark choco­late roasted hazel­nut hearts and Grand Marnier-​infused straw­ber­ries with rasp­berry minted cream.

Special Valentine weekend activities, including couples’ cooking classes, a fragrance blending package, live music and more, are also being offered to pamper your Valentine.

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In time for Valentine’s: Museum hosts Feb. 11 painting party


The Crawford W. Long Museum will hold an after-hours painting party from 6-9:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 11, just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Museum-painting-party-feb-11Uncork your inner artist and learn the techniques of decoupage and painting to create a textured multi-media canvas with a lovely Victorian teacup theme as artist Belinda Harris provides step-by-step instructions.

You’ll enjoy wine and light appetizers as you create fun art, not fine art, and no experience is necessary.

Pre-registration required and space is limited. All supplies and refreshments included in registration fee of $30 for Museum members and $35 for non-members.

For reservations and further information, contact the museum at 706-367-5307.

Crawford W. Long Museum, located at 28 College Ave., in downtown Jefferson, is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.