Area Events & Happenings

Native Azaleas – News of the Mysterious May White Azalea

The February 20 meeting of the Upstate Native Plant Society features Dr. Charles Horn bringing new information about the May White Azalea and other native azaleas of the southeast. The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. at Southern Wesleyan University in Founders Hall at 215 Clayton Street, Central.

The May White azalea, rhododendron eastmanii, was first identified as a separate species in 1999 and Horn has researched the new species over the past 19 years. He will offer new information on the distribution of the May White in South Carolina. Horn’s on-going research and field work have expanded to include DNA lab studies with the help of Marshall University. There are still a lot of old erroneous old records of the May White being identified under a different name, before the plant was recognized as a separate species. Horn hopes to help correct those identifications at university azalea collections in the southeast.

“One of the most challenging parts of identifying azaleas in the field occurs in the middle of winter when they’re not in flower. Do we know what species it is? Observing the ecological information,” he says. “Where is the plant growing in the environment… in saturated water… on a stream bank… a slope? …becomes part of the story too.”

The Native Plant Society meets monthly on the fourth Tuesday of each month rotating among three locations in the upstate. For more information, go to

Senator Scott Accepting Applications for Summer 2018 Internships

Washington, D.C.- U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) has announced he is accepting congressional internship applications for available positions in his Washington DC, North Charleston, Columbia and Greenville offices for the summer of 2018. The internship program offers undergraduate and graduate students practical experience in constituent services, the legislative process, government policy, and press. The internship provides students with the ability to work with and learn from public service professionals. All internships are unpaid, but students will learn invaluable work experience and skills throughout their internship that will help them gain a better understanding of how their government functions.

Washington, D.C. Office: In Washington, interns have the unique chance to research legislation, attend Congressional hearings and briefings, assist with press tasks, and help with constituent letters on issues. Responsibilities also include answering phones, helping to coordinate meetings, and other administrative tasks. By the end of the program, students will come away with a stronger understanding of the lawmaking process,will have improved their communication writing skills, and critical thinking abilities.

South Carolina Offices: (North Charleston, Columbia and Greenville) In the South Carolina Offices, interns will take an active role in the community, working on state-based projects of importance, while also answering phones, completing research and other projects, and being an integral part of day-to-day office operations. State office interns have the ability to assist with issues that are personally affecting our citizens.

Internship hours are flexible to accommodate students’ course schedules, but can generally run 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Interested South Carolina students should contact the internship coordinator at or (202) 224-6121.

Items published in Area News Briefs include information on upcoming events outside of Newberry County. Items can be submitted in writing to 1716 Main St., Newberry, S.C. 29108; in person at 1716 Main St.; or via email at Call 803-276-0625 for more information. Area News Briefs runs on a space available basis.