Few purchases give you a sense of pride and accomplishment like buying a new home. From white picket fences and lush green grass to cookouts with neighbors and holidays with the family, owning a home is magical. Like most great things, though, enduring the home-buying process takes a lot of work. There are many steps to take and difficult decisions to make along the way. One of the most crucial decisions is what type of home loan and mortgage broker to choose. Whether it's your first time buying a home or you're a seasoned owner with multiple properties, you will need a trusted mortgage broker in Knightsville, SC, with your best interests at heart.
If you're like most people, you need a mortgage professional whose top priority is their customers - an expert who can provide accurate advice and guidance so you can make educated decisions. That's where Mija Mortgage comes into the picture.
Whether you want the best interest rates or don't know where to start in the home-buying process, Mija Mortgage can set you up in the right direction. From getting you pre-qualified to buy a home to securing a veteran's loan, Mija Mortgage is the trusted solution you need. As Knightsville natives, we're proud to serve the Lowcountry and all of South Carolina with trusted mortgage brokerage services.
Unlike some mortgage companies in Knightsville, SC, we bring years of high-level experience and insight to the table. Having worked with hundreds of clients during our time in business, we know you're probably going through a range of emotions right now. Buying a new home can be a scary process, especially for first-time buyers. That's why we make every effort to make ourselves accessible and available for clients. Our primary goal is to help you make the right mortgage for your family and your budget.
We know that many home loan officers have horrible reputations. Some brokers only see their clients as transactions, and a means to make quick money. They come off as impatient and pushy, failing to understand that this is a very big decision for you. At Mija Mortgage, we take the opposite approach. We encourage our clients to take as much time as needed to ask us questions and review mortgage documents. We could say that our mission is to exceed your expectations, but we'd rather just show you. From assistance finding FHA, VA, or other loans to refinancing your current mortgage, Mija is the team you can trust.
Here are just a few reasons why home buyers choose Mija Mortgage:
Most people simply don't have access to the hundreds of thousands of dollars needed to purchase a home with cash. Instead, they take out a mortgage loan to buy a home. Unfortunately, many homebuyers are anxious to get the ball rolling and, due to their excitement, fail to shop around for the best mortgage rates. To some degree, avoiding this step makes sense, as it requires a lot of legwork and research to get the job done. For those not wanting to spend hours researching a reasonable mortgage, there's an alternative to consider - working with a mortgage broker.
To understand the benefits of working with a mortgage broker, you must first understand their role in the home-buying process.
Your mortgage broker is a third party that works to connect you with mortgage lenders. Essentially, a mortgage broker works as an intermediary between a person who wants to buy a home and the entities offering loans to buy a home. The mortgage broker works with both the borrower and lender to get the borrower approved. They also verify and collect paperwork from the borrower that the lender needs to finish a home purchase. Typically, mortgage brokers have relationships with several home loan lenders. Mija Mortgage, for example, has access to 50 different lenders, which gives us a wide range of home loans in Knightsville, SC, from which to choose.
In addition to finding a home loan lender, your mortgage broker will help you settle on the best loan options and interest rates for your budget. Ideally, your mortgage broker will take a great deal of stress and legwork off your plate while also potentially saving you money.
If you're ready to buy a home, getting pre-qualified is a great choice that will streamline the entire process. Your mortgage broker makes getting pre-approved easy by obtaining all the documents needed to get you pre-qualified. In taking a look at your application, they will determine if you're ready for the pre-approval process. If your application needs additional items, the mortgage company will help point you in the right direction to ensure your application is as strong as it can be. Your mortgage broker will also walk you through the different types of loans, from Conventional and FHA to VA and USDA.
In order to be pre-approved for a home in South Carolina, you must have the following:
Most people choose to use a mortgage broker because they have access to different lenders and interest rates. But a great mortgage broker brings more to the table than a choice of lenders.
Save You from Unneeded Stress:One of the biggest advantages of hiring a mortgage broker is that they can find and vet loans while managing the mortgage process on your behalf. The best mortgage companies, like Mija Mortgage, hire brokers who are experts at keeping underwriting on track, coordinating with relevant parties, and handling all paperwork involved. At the end of the day, mortgage brokers save you stress and time and often expedite the closing process.
More Access: We touched on this earlier, but it bears repeating: A mortgage broker provides access to a range of loans, rates, and lenders. In fact, many mortgage brokers can get rates lower than what the average person could get from a lender.
Save You Money: There's a chance that your mortgage broker can get your mortgage fees reduced or waived by the lender, which could save you a good deal of money.
Help with Unfavorable Financial Situations: Expert mortgage brokers can often assist in challenging financial situations, like when a buyer has inconsistent income or less-than-perfect credit. Experienced brokers, like those at Mija Mortgage, are often aware of lenders willing to will work with nontraditional borrowers.
Provide Key Insights: Mortgage brokers share important insights, such as your chances for a home loan approval and exactly how much house you can afford. They can also save you from making costly mistakes based on their years of expertise in the mortgage industry.
While settling on the best type of home loan isn't as exciting as searching for the home of your dreams, it's equally important. Yes, your Mija Mortgage loan officer in Knightsville, SC, will be happy to help explain the differences between home loans. But understanding the basics ahead of time will save you stress and time in the long run.
Conventional loans can be used to purchase a new home or refinance your current one. Conventional loans include fixed-rate mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages. Generally, borrowers must put down a 3% down payment for owner-occupants, 10% for a vacation property, and 20% for an investment home. If you are able to pay 20% of the total cost of the home, you can avoid private mortgage insurance, which is otherwise required. Conventional mortgages are often preferred by buyers with good credit or people needing a non-owner-occupied mortgage.
FHA mortgages are issued by the U.S. government and backed by the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD). This loan is often preferred by first-time homebuyers because it only requires a 3.5% down payment and offers more flexibility with credit requirements and underwriting standards. FHA loans have several requirements you must meet to qualify. Contact Mija Mortgage today to learn more about FHA loans and whether or not they're best for your financial situation.
Also backed by the government, these loans are insured by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and don't require money down. These loans have lower insurance requirements when compared to FHA loans, offer 100% financing if you qualify, and allow for closing costs to be covered by the seller. In order to qualify for a USDA loan, you must live in a rural area, and your household income must meet certain standards. These loans are often preferred by low-income citizens who live in rural parts of South Carolina.
Also known as VA or Veteran's Affairs loans, these mortgages are reserved for the brave men and women who served in the military. VA loans help provide our military members, veterans, and their families with favorable loan terms and an easy home ownership experience. Often, those who qualify are not required to make a down payment on their home. Additionally, these loans often include less expensive closing costs.
If you are a veteran or the family member of a veteran, contact Mija Mortgage today to speak with our Vetted VA Professional, Debbie Haberny. Debbie helps our military members, veterans, and their family members obtain home loans utilizing veteran benefits and would be happy to help as you search for a home.
Do you have questions about the complexities of mortgages and home loans? As your advocate, Mija Mortgage is here to answer any questions you have about mortgages and the home-buying process. We encourage you to call our office to speak directly with one of our mortgage experts or continue reading below for answers to some frequently asked questions.
Q. I was talking to my spouse about mortgage brokers, and they mentioned the phrase home loan originator. What's the difference between a broker and a loan originator?
A. The mortgage industry is full of confusing jobs and titles, making it easy to confuse roles and responsibilities. Such is the case with mortgage brokers and home loan originators. Though their roles share similarities, a home loan originator in Knightsville, SC, works for a bank or credit union, while a mortgage broker works for a brokerage company. Home loan originators and mortgage brokers are both licensed by the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System (NMLS).
Q. I've heard from everyone that you must have mortgage insurance to buy a home. What is mortgage insurance?
A. Essentially, mortgage insurance helps protect lenders if a borrower forecloses on the home they bought. One advantage of mortgage insurance is that when borrowers pay it, lenders can often grant loans to buyers when they might not have otherwise. Though not always required to buy a home, mortgage insurance is often needed for down payments of less than 20%.
Q. I have just been pre-approved to buy a beautiful home in South Carolina. Is there anything I shouldn't do now that I'm pre-qualified?
A. Mortgage companies like Mija Mortgage, make getting pre-qualified for a home easy. However, as your loan process continues, your lender is required to run a new credit report before closing on a home. For that reason, it's to avoid any activity that might affect your credit score, such as:
Q. My brother-in-law recently refinanced his home in South Carolina. What is refinancing, and should I consider refinancing my home too?
A. Refinancing your home basically means you're swapping your current mortgage for a new one, most often with a lower interest rate. If you would like to reduce the term of your loan, lower your monthly mortgage payments, or consolidate debt, refinancing may be a smart option. Many homeowners also choose to refinance if they want to switch from adjustable-rate mortgages to fixed-rate mortgages or to get cash back for home renovations. To learn whether refinancing is a viable option for your situation, contact Mija Mortgage ASAP, as loan rates change frequently.
Here at Mija Mortgage, we believe that the best communities begin with the dream of home ownership. Our mission is to make those dreams come true, with personalized service, expert guidance, and good old-fashioned hard work. As one of the most trusted mortgage companies in Knightsville, SC, we have years of experience working with a diverse range of clients, from first-time buyers and investors to self-employed borrowers and non-native English speakers.
Though every mortgage situation is different, one thing never changes: our commitment to clients. Contact our office today to get started on an exceptional home-buying experience.
KNIGHTSVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – “She lights up my world.” “She changed my life.” “She’s fun and creative.” “She helped my son.”These are just a few words of adoration used when students and parents talk about Knightsville Elementary Special Education Teacher Kristi O’Callahan – the News 2 Cool Teacher of the week.O’Callahan has a passion for teaching special education. “I feel like this is what I was born to do,” she said. “I never wante...
KNIGHTSVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – “She lights up my world.” “She changed my life.” “She’s fun and creative.” “She helped my son.”
These are just a few words of adoration used when students and parents talk about Knightsville Elementary Special Education Teacher Kristi O’Callahan – the News 2 Cool Teacher of the week.
O’Callahan has a passion for teaching special education. “I feel like this is what I was born to do,” she said. “I never wanted to be anything else.”
The New York native teaches special education kindergarten through fifth-grade math and English at the Dorchester District 2 school. It’s a role she’s had for the past six years.
“A safe place to love, and learn, and just be awesome,” she said, “They’re not less than. They’re awesome. They’re amazing, and I love them! I love my kids.”
Sixteen years dedicated to special education, O’Callahan said she always wanted to be a teacher.
“The special ed part was a close family friend of ours. Growing up, their son had Down’s syndrome. I saw the way people looked at him differently, or the way they acted around him, but my brother, my cousins, his siblings – we didn’t treat him differently. He was just Patty to us.”
She went on to say, “I just knew I wanted him and kids like him to not feel less than. I just want them to feel special and important. I think that’s what we do here every day, myself, my T-A, that’s what we strive for.”
O’Callahan said she uses a fun multi-sensory approach to teaching.
“We do reading and math primarily, we have fun, too. It’s all about a hands-on multi-sensory approach. So there’s kinesthetics, so we’re moving. I think the most important thing is the relationships that we form first. I think the bond, rapport, and communication. I want them to feel safe, and loved, and important, and special.”
“Once they feel those things, I think then we kick in academics and that’s when they really thrive. I just want to make a difference when they come here because being pulled out of your Gen-Ed setting makes you feel a little different and weird, so I just want them to come here and be happy and excited about my classroom,” she added.
Fourth-grade student Ariyah Hallock says Mrs. O’Callahan changed her life. “She lights up my world. I want to come to her classroom every day because how grateful I am. Over the two years, I’ve been with her, she’s been helping me read and everything she’s done for me, and I’m so thankful for her. She is making a difference,” Ariyah said.
The principal at Knightsville Elementary School, Claire Sieber, said O’Callahan’s energy level and expertise to meet children where they are and to help them grow academically make her the right fit for the school.
“She makes those connections with students that help them to engage in the learning, feel proud of their successes, and want to take the next step in their learning to continue to fill in the academic gaps they might have,” she said.
Parent Bridget Sowards’ son, Daniel, is one of Mrs. O’Callahan’s students. She nominated her to receive the Cool School Teacher award. “She’s making a big difference in our school. Mrs. O’Callahan is an amazing support for Daniel. She would send me emails sometimes and say ‘oh I saw this and thought of Daniel, and maybe you can implement this at home as well.’ It just blows my mind how amazing she is with the kids, and how Daniel is so excited to come to school to be with her and how he has improved in the last two years in English Language Arts by leaps and bounds where he was really struggling,” she said. “He’s beginning to catch up to his peers, which is the whole point of her being with her. She’s really amazing.”
O’Callahan said she’s thankful for the special accolades and recognition. “It’s super overwhelming! I just don’t think about things like that. I come here, I love on my kids. I teach my kids and that’s the most important thing. I love it! It’s amazing! It’s such a good feeling!”
If you would like to nominate a Cool School or educator, send an email to Octavia Mitchell at email@example.com.
The Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce recently held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the grand opening of State Farm Insurance in Knightsville.``We are a locally owned agency, passionate about educating and protecting the community we serve, backed by a national brand.” Jennifer Hoppe, Agent.Hoppe’s new office is located at 100 O’Malley Drive, Unit A, Summerville, SC.“My agency’s goal is to help Knightsville and surrounding communities realize the importance of insurance...
The Greater Summerville/Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce recently held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the grand opening of State Farm Insurance in Knightsville.
``We are a locally owned agency, passionate about educating and protecting the community we serve, backed by a national brand.” Jennifer Hoppe, Agent.
Hoppe’s new office is located at 100 O’Malley Drive, Unit A, Summerville, SC.
“My agency’s goal is to help Knightsville and surrounding communities realize the importance of insurance and having the proper protection in place.” Hoppe continues. The office will be opened
The team consists of Account Representative, Melinda Fernbach and Account Associate, Kimberly Hickman.
April Curci is the newest commercial real estate professional to partner with the rapidly expanding Commercial Real Estate Division of Carolina One Real Estate Services.A native of Arizona, Curci graduated from the College of Charleston with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, accompanied by three minors in real estate, entrepreneurship and biology.
A third generation commercial real estate professional, April Curci holds active licenses in both Arizona and South Carolina. Immersed in the Lowcountry’s dynamic real estate market since 2013, Curci specializes in the logistics and transportation of products coming through the Panama Canal and their subsequent dispersal throughout the U.S.
After her graduation from the College of Charleston, Curci held a position with a prominent brokerage firm as an interim office coordinator, handling a wide range of duties including IT, real estate data entry, facilities management, deal tracking and transportation management. Curci has completed the Global Supply Chain, Logistics and Transportation/Deep Water Port Studies and Analysis Course and is in the process of becoming a Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM).
Working from Carolina One’s North Charleston Administration office at 4024 Salt Pointe Parkway, you are invited to call Aril Curci at (602) 625-3104 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Founded in 1964, Carolina One Real Estate is the undisputed leader in the Metro Charleston real estate market. In addition to Residential Real Estate, the 14 office full-service company offers divisions in Mortgage, Property and Casualty Insurance, New Homes Sales, Relocation, Commercial Real Estate, Vacation/Resort Rentals, Title Services, Property Management, and Career Development. Carolina One is also affiliated with Leading Real Estate Companies of the World and Mayfair International Realty providing world-class business resources and both national and global connections. For additional information, visit our website at www.carolinaone.com.
Billed as South Carolina’s “most innovative and walkable community,” Nexton has recently announced its designs to build a new commercial property known as Dayrfield Park that will feature office space and residential offerings, as well as retail and service provider options.
Extending across 60 acres connecting to Nexton’s Brighton Park, the new project will consist of three phases, each of which will add five buildings to the area. In total, the undertaking — slated to break ground this summer with an expected 2026 completion date — is forecasted to deliver 500 new jobs.
Phase One, as detailed in a corresponding media release, is scheduled to combine about 100,000 square feet of commercial space and 20,000 square feet of retail and restaurant additions.
Some of the businesses on board to set up shop in Deerfield Park include The Goddard School daycare center, HYLO Fitness and Go Dog — a pet daycare, boarding and grooming service with an adjoining bar.
“At Nexton, we strive to think one step beyond what is needed to deliver amenities that will improve the daily lives of our residents and employees,” said Nexton Vice President and General Manager Brent Gibadlo. “Dayfield Park will provide an immersive community experience while eliminating or improving the daily commute to the office.”
Speaking on behalf of the collaborating leasing firm was Bridge Commercial Senior Vice President Daniel Pellegrino, who underscored the project’s aim on meeting the needs of Nexton employees.
“Dayfield Park is the first of its kind in the Charleston market to focus on the complete workday beyond the hours of nine to five, further cementing Nexton’s position as the metro region’s third major employment center,” he stated.
Architectural services will be furnished by Rush Dixon Architects and Bello Garris Architects, with SeamonWhiteside serving as the engineering company on the grand-scale construction venture.
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC/AP) - Tornado watches around the Lowcountry have been allowed to expire as Tropical Depression Nicole moves farther from South Carolina.Remnants of Tropical Storm Nicole put the Lowcountry under tornado watches throughout Thursday night going into Friday morning.Most of the watches ended Friday morning, and a watch for Georgetown and Williamsburg Counties ended just before noon. Two tornado warnings were issued in the Tri-County during the storm activity.A tornado warning was issued at 12:20 a.m. f...
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC/AP) - Tornado watches around the Lowcountry have been allowed to expire as Tropical Depression Nicole moves farther from South Carolina.
Remnants of Tropical Storm Nicole put the Lowcountry under tornado watches throughout Thursday night going into Friday morning.
Most of the watches ended Friday morning, and a watch for Georgetown and Williamsburg Counties ended just before noon. Two tornado warnings were issued in the Tri-County during the storm activity.
A tornado warning was issued at 12:20 a.m. for parts of Charleston County, however, it expired at 12:41 a.m.
Another warning came Thursday afternoon as a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado was located at 5:17 p.m. near Knightsville The warning expired at 5:45 p.m.
The National Weather Service has not verified if any tornados touchdown during either of the warnings. Meanwhile, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division says county emergency managers across the state reported minimal damages. None of the managers requested state assistance.
Click here to download the free Live 5 First Alert Weather app.
FIRST ALERT// Storm Update// ONE MINUTE WEATHER pic.twitter.com/MIG0rt8Rkv— Bill Walsh (@BILLWALSHTV) November 11, 2022
Live 5 Meteorologist Joey Sovine says gusts to tropical storm force are possible Wednesday through Friday.
A tropical storm warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area.
A tornado watch means conditions are favorable for tornadoes to form, but does not indicate that any actual tornadoes have been detected.
Tropical Storm Nicole has sent multiple homes collapsing into the Atlantic Ocean. Nicole made landfall as a hurricane early Thursday near Vero Beach, Florida, but the brunt of the damage was along the East Coast well north of there, in the Daytona Beach area. Its damaging coastal surge was hitting beachfront properties in Daytona Beach Shores that lost their last protections during Hurricane Ian.
The Live 5 Weather team declared Thursday and Friday as First Alert Weather Days because of possible impacts from the storm.
Sovine says coastal flooding is likely through Friday around high tides with beach erosion and high surf also likely.
Sovine said heavy rain could be possible with rainfall totals between one and four inches. Breezy conditions could occur through Friday and winds may occasionally gust to, or over, 40 mph near the coast.
Nicole became the 14th named storm of the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season on Monday.
As of 10 a.m., Nicole was a tropical depression with its center located near latitude 34.2 north and longitude 84.3 west, about 35 miles north of Atlanta, Ga. The storm was moving to the north-northeast at 23 mph and its estimated minimum central pressure is 1001 mb or 29.56 inches.
Forecasters say an acceleration toward the north and north-northeast is expected Friday.
On the forecast track, the center of Nicole will move across central and northern Georgia Friday morning and over the western Carolinas later.
Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph with higher gusts. Nicole is expected to become a post-tropical cyclone Friday, then dissipate Friday night or early Saturday as it merges with a frontal system over the eastern United States.
Tropical Storm Warnings are now in effect for Charleston, Berkeley, Coastal Colleton and Beaufort counties. Gusts to tropical storm force(40+mph) are possible today through Friday near the coast. pic.twitter.com/VOkWBvcYTx— Joey Sovine Live 5 (@JoeySovine) November 9, 2022
City of Charleston officials say they will be closely monitoring the tropical storm. Crews have already begun preparing for potential storm impacts.
“Residents are asked to keep an eye on reliable local weather reports over the next few days,” Emergency Management Director Ben Almquist said in a news release. “If bad conditions do arise, citizens are advised to follow the guidance of Emergency Management officials and, as always, motorists should avoid driving through high water when they encounter it.”
The city’s stormwater department has prepared temporary pumps for low-lying areas. Crews will also be cleaning out ditches and drains in flood-prone areas.
To find out how you can help, visit the Adopt-A-Drain website by clicking here.
The Atlantic Hurricane Season runs through Nov. 30.
Nicole made landfall near Vero Beach as a Category 1 hurricane at about 3 a.m. Thursday, more than a hundred miles south of Daytona Beach Shores, before its maximum sustained winds dropped to 60 mph, the Miami-based center said. The storm was centered about 30 miles southeast of Orlando. It was moving west-northwest near 14 mph.
Robbie Berg, a hurricane specialist at the National Hurricane Center in Miami advised people to understand that hazards from Tropical Storm Nicole “will exist across the state of Florida today.”
Nicole came could briefly emerge over the northeastern corner of the Gulf of Mexico Thursday afternoon before moving over the Florida Panhandle and Georgia, he said.
The storm left south Florida sunny and calm as it moved north, but could dump as much as 6 inches of rain over the Blue Ridge Mountains by Friday, the hurricane center said.
Nicole became a hurricane Wednesday evening as it slammed into Grand Bahama Island. It was the first to hit the Bahamas since Hurricane Dorian, a Category 5 storm that devastated the archipelago in 2019.
For storm-weary Floridians, it is only the third November hurricane to hit their shores since recordkeeping began in 1853. The previous ones were the 1935 Yankee Hurricane and Hurricane Kate in 1985.
Copyright 2022 WCSC. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.
SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – It was 1973 when Shirley McGreal, then living in Southeast Asia, saw beady bright eyes staring back at her from between the slats of a wooden crate.The eyes belonged to a gibbon — a primate native to the region — who had fallen victim to the dangerous world of the pet trade, where gibbons were being sold into homes, zoos, or labs, only to later be discarded.In 1977, McGreal created the Inter...
SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – It was 1973 when Shirley McGreal, then living in Southeast Asia, saw beady bright eyes staring back at her from between the slats of a wooden crate.
The eyes belonged to a gibbon — a primate native to the region — who had fallen victim to the dangerous world of the pet trade, where gibbons were being sold into homes, zoos, or labs, only to later be discarded.
In 1977, McGreal created the International Primate Protection League (IPPL) in Summerville as a gibbon sanctuary. The now 47-acre property remains nestled in a quiet area of the Lowcountry that is illuminated by the sounds of the primates singing to one another.
Meg McCue-Jones, the Compliance and Outreach Manager, explained that the land was a sod farm in the late 70s and started taking in the gibbons that needed help soon after.
One of the sanctuary’s residents, Gibby, is one of the oldest known living gibbons at over 60 years old.
Like most of the gibbons at the sanctuary, his life started off rough.
McCue-Jones said that Gibby was wild caught, and “with every gibbon wild caught, they shoot mom out of the tree, hoping baby falls, and then they take the baby.”
He was first sold into the pet trade in by a Bangkok dealer, but that was just the beginning. Gibby went to labs at Hofstra University and the State University at Stony Brook.
Researchers embedded electrodes in his skin as part of a locomotion project.
The electrodes and thin wires were inserted into his muscles and connected him to a suit that would measure his muscle movements. McCue-Jones explained that this was obviously not an ideal situation on any aspect, whether it be a human or animal.
At 44, Gibby made it to his first sanctuary, but the conditions were hard on his body. In March of 2007, just four years after his arrival, the IPPL reached out to the sanctuary to relocate not only Gibby, but several other gibbons.
For Gibby, like the other 29 at the sanctuary, Summerville is his last stop. McCue-Jones says that the sanctuary is their forever home.
But with the pandemic, their home has become more difficult to manage.
With fear of COVID-19 spreading to the primates, volunteers were no longer allowed to assist with the many daily tasks necessary to keep the place running.
From hosing the outsides of the enclosures, to raking, food prep, and even assistance inside the office—the staff was left with mounting responsibilities.
The economic impacts of the pandemic left donors and community partners reeling financially, but the bills at the sanctuary remained steady.
As a non-federally funded organization, the IPPL relies heavily on donations to meet the needs of the animals.
Stacy Lambert, a Senior Animal Care Giver, said that since a lot of their population has started to reach geriatric ages, their vet bills are getting bigger as they are having more interventions and medications, different procedures, and checkup appointments with Dr. John Ohlandt.
While expensive, their system of care has proven to work.
Lambert says that in the wild, gibbons usually live about 30-35 years. However, in captivity, gibbons living into their 40s is normal. However, the IPPL has quite a few gibbons that are up in their 40s and 50s while, of course, Gibby is 62.
Although the interventions from the IPPL show the ability of the sanctuary, McCue-Jones said all those at the IPPL ultimately wish there was not a need for them at all, and that the gibbons could live freely in the wild.
McCue-Jones said, “as Shirley has spoken of before, if you really think about it, do humans need sanctuaries, should we have them? Should we be treating the animals this way?”
To send the Gibbons a care package full of nuts, click here.
To donate to the IPPL’s missions and day-to-day operations, click here.
To send specified items needed by the IPPL via Amazon, click here.
It’s the end of an era for roller skaters. Music in Motion Family Fun Center roller rink in Summerville shut its doors for good Sunday night. A rink employee confirmed Monday that the skating facility has permanently closed.Last Thursday, at the rink’s final adult night, skaters zipped along, displaying skills that spanned from spinning and dancing on wheels backwards to apprehensive first-timers feeling it out. A disco ball spun along with the tunes that weren’t necessarily child-appropriate.As word spread th...
It’s the end of an era for roller skaters. Music in Motion Family Fun Center roller rink in Summerville shut its doors for good Sunday night. A rink employee confirmed Monday that the skating facility has permanently closed.
Last Thursday, at the rink’s final adult night, skaters zipped along, displaying skills that spanned from spinning and dancing on wheels backwards to apprehensive first-timers feeling it out. A disco ball spun along with the tunes that weren’t necessarily child-appropriate.
As word spread the rink would close permanently, skaters unabashedly filmed one another to document their joy and camaraderie as they zoomed around in circles grooving to the beat.
The closing of Music in Motion is a major cultural loss for the area, many say, especially since the only other rinks in the area, Hot Wheels Skate Center and Stardust Skate Center, closed in 2014.
Summerville native Demont Teneil said he has skated at Music in Motion for 14 years. For him, roller skating is therapy to help navigate career and relationships changes.
“I needed something that no one could take from me — and it was skating,” Teneil said. “It’s been my outlet. I just kept going and just kept trying new tricks and it rolled me out of depression.”
Teneil said he heard from his fellow skaters that Music in Motion, which opened in 2001, would not be a roller rink much longer.
“I’m sad that it’s been sold but it will definitely still always be a part of me, because I’ve learned so many of my tricks at the skating rink,” Teneil said. He plans to start traveling to Savannah, Ga., and Columbia to rink skate, and will hit the outdoor skate areas, such The Bridge Spot off of Poinsett Street in downtown Charleston.
The dynamic of teaching and learning is a big part of the roller skating experience at Music in Motion, others said.
“Everybody’s really nice and supportive,” said Nick Velez, who’s been skating regularly at Music in Motion since February. He has roller skated for about 16 years and used to be an instructor in Southern California before he moved to Goose Creek.
“Everybody’s really cool and down to help out,” he said. “If you’re struggling, don’t fear. They’ll help you up. If you have any questions, if you want to learn something, they’re more than happy to show you how to do it. If you’re trying to pop off and be yourself, they’re all about it.”
Shmeika Hall from Goose Creek said she worked at Music in Motion for almost a year before she left her position as a rink floor guard last June.
“Working here was important to me because I was able to teach people how to skate,” she said. “I was able to interact and make skating friends. When I first started skating here, maybe five years ago, it was a very small crowd of adults, but over time it has grown. [The rink] was like a safe place for adults to come and have fun, and I don’t know how we’re going to do that now.”
A few months ago, Auburn Fiore, who lives in Knightsville, visited Music in Motion for the first time in 10 years. As a child, she said she visited frequently.
“When I came here for adult skate night, I realized how joyous and amazing the community is here,” Fiore said. “While we’re here, we’re all one big community that loves to come together, dance and have a great time. I’m definitely scared of losing a place for us all to gather and bond over roller skating.”
Roller skating is just as much about congregating as a group as it is the privilege to have a space to skate, she said. Outdoor roller skating isn’t an ideal option for beginner skaters, she added, because of uneven concrete, blistering heat and rules that prohibit skating at sports courts around the area.
“It’s definitely devastating,” Fiore said. “Now all the people that have bonded over this super-interesting talent and hobby, there’s nowhere for us to congregate.”
While the future of roller skating in the area is unclear, one option exists for women skaters: Lowcountry Highrollers Derby, a local women’s roller derby team. It’s offering a meet-and-greet Thursday.
Highrollers president Traci Doutaz of Ladson remembers going to Music in Motion often between 2015 and 2017 after Hot Wheels Skate Center closed.
“For beginners, it’s super important to have a roller rink to learn not only because the floor is amazing, but [it] also has skates to borrow,” she said. “Roller skating is not the easiest hobby to just pick up and not having a local roller rink and its community just takes that option away for a lot of people.”
Doutaz joined Highrollers in 2010, and she said it was popular up until about 2015 when the group lost its bouting venue at The Citadel. Then Covid-19 hit and roller skating blew up, Doutaz said, so there was renewed interest in Highrollers. After more than a year of searching, North Charleston Coliseum offered the group a space to practice and hold bouts currently. The closest roller derby club for men is in Columbia, she said.
Doutaz has been roller skating for almost 30 years. She worked her first job as a carhop on skates at a Sonic in Kentucky.
“Emotionally it’s my escape,” she said. “It’s how I deal with things. It’s my happy place. I’m more comfortable with wheels on my feet than anything else.”
The Highrollers group offers a haven for women skaters who need to be shown the ropes.
“We will teach you everything: how to skate and how to fall,” Doutaz said. “You can show up even if you have never put skates on before.”
Lowcountry Highrollers Derby is hosting a meet-and-greet 6-9 p.m. Aug. 25 at Rusty Bull in North Charleston.
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