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Author: Don Rhodes

Over Achiever Fielding Wallace

One of Bobby Jones’ First Foursome   Augusta businessman Fielding Wallace was part of the foursome in 1932 when Bobby Jones played his first 18 holes at the Augusta National, but Wallace also loved horses, tennis and music with equal passion. When it came to horses, it was successful local businessman Fielding Wallace who championed making Augusta one of the great equine centers of the South. When it came to tennis, it was Fielding Wallace who taught thousands of Augustans about the sport in its pioneer days and played at a championship level himself. And when it came to...

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The Augusta Futurity

With its 2019 show celebrates 40 years of being on the cutting edge   Last year alone The Augusta Futurity in January of 2018 in James Brown Arena saw 550 entrants coming from 23 U.S. states plus as far as Canada and Italy. It literally has poured millions of dollars into the local economy, becoming second only in annual tourism revenue to that spring golfing game held a few miles away on Washington Road. William S. “Billy” Morris III, the Futurity’s show chairman and co-founder, has observed, “This show has been incredibly important to our state, to South Carolina, to...

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25 Years

Whether you love him or hate him, ‘radio blowhard’ Austin Rhodes has lasted for more than 25 years By his “Cousin” Don Rhodes   Because WGAC radio talk show host Austin Rhodes and I share the same last surname, over the years his listeners have come up to me somewhere and ask if we are related. It’s generally always an amusing encounter, because right after they ask almost timidly, “Now, are you related to Austin Rhodes?” they act as if they are ready to take a step backwards in case I’m going to explode with some angrily-worded answer. The...

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50th Anniversary of the Greater Augusta Arts Council

Greater Augusta Arts Council weathers rainy days to observe 50 years as an umbrella group   It was just a small notice of two paragraphs published on Page 10A in The Augusta Chronicle on Sunday, August 27, 1967, and yet it would have a major effect on the Augusta area’s individual artists and arts-related organizations. “Junior League of Augusta will hold an open meeting at 11 a.m., Sept. 12, at St. Paul’s Church parish hall. Jesse C. Reese Jr., executive director of the Arts Council of Winston-Salem, N.C., will be guest speaker. “The public is invited to hear him lecture on...

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Remembering the Rialto

Photo courtesy of The Augusta Chronicle The same day that The Augusta Chronicle announced on its front page that Hollywood movie actress Grace Kelly was engaged to a prince in Monaco, “Our Town” columnist Chris Brady announced inches away on Page 1 that the Rialto was closing after more than 60 years as a movie theater. “The Rialto Theater, one of the city’s oldest movies houses, is going out of business,” Brady wrote in his column published Friday morning, January 6, 1956.  “Lack of customers.  Milton Newsom, city manager of the Imperial and Rialto, said the theater would close...

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