Pomaria alpaca farmer inspired by TV show, motivated by family

Alicia Holbrook was just trying to pass the time until her daughter went back to sleep with a TV show about alpaca farming. Five years later, her late-night idea has grown into Carolina Pride Pastures, a thriving alpaca farm boasting 20 alpacas and an educational field trip program.

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Main Street Bakery’s owner shares her Southern roots through her sweets

Dana Myers knew she wanted to be a baker ever since her mom gave her an Easy-Bake Oven and her grandmother taught her how to make pound cakes. She started out selling her sweets at hair salons. Now she owns Main Street Bakery, which got national attention when Hillary Clinton stopped by.

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Columbia developer Richard Burts strives to keep city’s history alive

Columbia developer Richard Burts has built a reputation taking on projects, such as 701 Whaley and the Palmetto Compress Warehouse, that others said were impossible. Those successes have proved to Burts the value of historic preservation and prompted others to say he really gets it. He talks with us about saving historic Columbia.

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Ed Albritton reflects on 15 years of running W. Columbia’s iconic bookstore

Fifteen years ago, Ed Albritton was at a crossroads. He took the leap from a stressful mental health career to opening Ed’s Editions rare and used books in West Columbia. His son thought he was crazy, but Albritton now says it’s the best decision he could have made.

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Heritage, culture, vegan soul food help define Lamb’s Bread owner

Folami Geter, owner of the Lamb’s Bread Vegan Cafe on North Main, shares her heritage and beliefs with her community through the food she serves. Her vegan recipes are inspired by soul food – distinctly Southern, but meat free.

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Professor seeks to build world-class finance program at Moore School

That famous movie line “greed is good” isn’t too far off the mark for USC professor Colin Jones. He’s trying to build a world-class finance program to go with the Darla Moore Business School’stop-ranked international program. The goal is to make USC students competitive for top-dollar jobs from Wall Street to Main Street.

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Preserving Jewish history challenges Historic Columbia’s leader

What do you do when you want to preserve Columbia’s Jewish history, but it means coordinating six groups while realizing that without quick action, key memories could be lost? You turn to Historic Columbia’s Robin Waites.

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Years of social work motivate Columbia writer Damron’s novels

How do you terrify a mystery writer? Choose her newest book, a literary novel, as this year’s One Book, One Community reading for Columbia. Writer Carla Damron, who weaves years of social work into her mysteries, says it’s an honor, but also terrifying to know many area book clubs will read her work.

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Head of Cayce charity quietly helps those who need it most

Linda Keisler left a comfortable manager’s job at BellSouth because it was God’s will. She ended up in Cayce and now helps over 200 people a month. It was a hard sell for her and her family, but after 19 years, Keisler has established God’s Helping Hands as Cayce’s and West Columbia’s go-to charity.

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USC blues professor teaches students more than just music

Walter Liniger is an unlikely blues professor. He isn’t African-American and he isn’t from the U.S. He’s Swiss, and his passion brought him here to study under blues legends. In his USC classes, you won’t find a textbook or PowerPoint. Instead, students learn about themselves through playing music.

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