The Golden Ray is gone from the St. Simons Sound, the Georgia Bulldogs are undefeated and no-see-ums are headed out of town for the winter. Life is good, and it got eminently better last weekend during Brunswick PorchFest. For the uninitiated, PorchFests are popular events in many areas during which residents of a neighborhood or community invite local bands and musicians to perform on the front porches and in the front yards of their homes. A few years ago some residents and businesspeople who live in the Brunswick Historic District, got wind of the phenomenon, and began planning a local PorchFest. I would mention names, but if I forget someone I’ll be on everyone’s bad list and sure to receive lumps of coal for Christmas. This year, the event featured 47 bands on 45 porches, an array of food trucks and an amazing cross-section of the community. Young and older, straight and gay, couples and singles, families with children, people with dogs, on bicycles and in golf carts – you name them, they were there. The great music, cool temperatures, array of food from food trucks parked in city squares provided everyone there with an almost heavenly respite.

We are fortunate in this community to have a number of nonprofit organizations based here that work with all sorts of populations throughout the Golden Isles and meet local challenges head on. In our Coastal Illustrated feature, we spotlight five of these organizations – one each from social services, history and culture, environmental preservation, ministry and the arts – and their executive directors. We learn about their missions and how even the smallest amount of support can help them help others.

In the Coastal Home feature, Christmas curb appeal is the name of the game. Our experts, Dawn Hart at ACE Garden Center and David Lowe, owner of Edward on St. Simons, give tons of tips for making the entrance to your home a festive experience just in time for the holidays. And, in our real estate story, reporter Gordon Jackson explores flooring options.

In our Local Q+A, we meet Jimmy Johnston, senior VP of golf at Sport Five. Jimmy and his family have lived here 16 years, but he’s been coming to St. Simons and Sea Island his whole life. He reveals the best advice he’s ever received and dishes about what he and his family enjoy doing in their spare time.

Cheyenne Mosley is the focus of our Realtor Q+A. A Golden Isles native, she works with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Hodnett Cooper Real Estate. She shares her childhood memories, her favorite things to do and the best piece of advice she ever received.

Literary columnist Cary Knapp has reviewed Anthony Doerr’s newest book, “Cloud Cuckoo Land.” She says this story is a magical story that takes place across three cleverly connected storylines, which has its roots in a Greek fable brought to life by Aristophanes in his play “The Birds.” Anyhow, the Doerr book stretches from 15th-century Constantinople to a small town in present-day Idaho and on to a spaceship in the future.

In our horticulture column, Anne Ditmer sings the praises of the beautiful cyclamen, which thrives in the cooler temperatures of the Coastal South, and comes in a variety of bright, happy colors.

We have two events in our Captured section this issue – the aforementioned PorchFest, and the Fur Ball, an annual fundraiser for the Humane Society of South Coastal Georgia. You’ll see tons of familiar faces!

In Shore Things, Cheri Leavy celebrates Thanksgiving Thankfulness with a cornucopia of harvest florals, pottery, home accessories and a little something to make your patio more cozy. For the kids, Thankful Fairy kits help parents teach their children how to be grateful.

And don’t forget to check out our Events page, make your list and check it twice. You certainly don’t want to miss anything this time of year.

Enjoy the issue!