Friday, July 22, 2011

$100k Purse up for Grabs at Legends Big Money 100 Race

Boasting the only $100,000 purse in Legend Car racing and a 100-lap
main event, the Legends Big Money 100 will take place Aug. 1-2 on the
frontstretch quarter-mile oval at legendary Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The two-day grassroots racing spectacular will feature fierce
competition among the nation's best Legend Car and Bandolero racers.

"This is the kind of big money these competitors usually don't see
unless they reach the NASCAR level," said Don Hawk, vice president of
business affairs, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. "The winner of the A-Main
take home $25,000. Even the last-place payout for the Legends Big
Money 100
A-Main is $1,000 and that's 10 times the Legend Car registration fee.
is going to be a stellar event that will showcase everything that is
about Legend Car racing."

"The purse you're getting here is in the thousands instead of just
hundreds of dollars," said Legends Big Money 100 participant Steven
Cantrell, a California native who moved to Charlotte to pursue his
dream of
making it to NASCAR. "Anywhere else the most you win is 500 bucks, but
you're getting $25,000, which is a lot of money for those who have
Cars and just love to race."

"There are not many other forms of short-track racing that you can
run for that amount of money," added Legend Car racing veteran and
Ga.-native, Doug Stevens. "Especially with the price of the car in
relationship to the amount of money you're racing for. I'm looking
to it."

Registration is available online at
and or at the gate the day of the event.
who purchase a new Legend Car from U.S. Legend Cars International will
receive free entry into the Legends Big Money 100.

Competitors participating in the Legends Big Money 100 have the
option of registering in three Legend Car divisions based on the
age and experience level: Young Lions/Semi-Pro, Masters or the Legends
Money 100, which is open to all drivers. Young Lions/Semi-Pro and
competitors can register for their division race and the Legends Big
100. Each division will run a qualifying session, heat races and an A-
race, with the Legends Big Money 100 A-Main serving as the grand
finale of
the two-day event.

Competitors will complete time trials to determine their starting
position in the heat races. Drivers will then progress to B-Mains
based on
their finishing position in the heats. The starting lineup for each A-
will consist of heat race winners and the first-place finishers from the
B-Mains. A total of 30 competitors will race in the Legends Big Money
A-Main event, which will be 100 laps with a 15-minute break at lap 50.

Bandolero Beginner Bandit, Bandit and Outlaw drivers will also have
the opportunity to compete in a Bandolero two-race championship event,
qualifying sessions, heat races and main events on each day. An overall
champion for each division will be crowned based on total points
in each main event. Prizes will be awarded to the top three in overall
points for each division.

The Legends Big Money 100 is open to all Legend Car competitors, 12
years of age or older and is not restricted by division. All minors 17
younger must complete a minor waiver, which is available for download at

For additional information on the Legends Big Money 100, visit or call the Charlotte Motor Speedway
department at (704) 455-3205. For more information about U.S. Legend
International and Legend Cars, visit or call U.S.
Legend Cars International's headquarters at (704) 455-3896.

Connect with Charlotte Motor Speedway on Twitter at or become a Facebook fan at

Graduation rate rises at CMS; overall test scores decline

State test scores declined overall for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools,
according to results released by the district recently, and the
graduation rate rose by nearly three percentage points.

The district showed improvement in seven of 22 areas tested, district
officials said. Scores rose slightly in math for grades four and
seven, reading in grades six, seven and eight and science in grades
five and eight. Scores declined in seven of eight areas tested for
high school students, and stayed flat in one.

Tenth-grade writing tests showed a slight decline, although CMS
continued to outperform the state in writing.

"We are disappointed that we did not make more progress this year,"
said Interim Superintendent Hugh Hattabaugh. "Although we are pleased
with the growth in our graduation rate, we would have liked to see
more improvement in specific tested areas. We will work in the coming
year to identify areas where we can improve."

The greatest improvement in district test scores was in science, where
scores improved by five points in grades five and eight. Reading
improved by one point in grades six, seven and eight, and math by two
points in grades four and seven (all calculated without including
retests). Scores stayed flat in fifth- and sixth-grade math and in
third- and fifth-grade reading.

High school scores declined in seven areas and stayed flat in one.
Biology scores stayed flat. The largest declines were reported in
Algebra I (eight points) and Algebra II (six points). Scores declined
in English I and History by three points, by two points in tenth-grade
writing and by one point in physical science.

The district's growth scores – how much more than one year's progress
was made in a year's time – also declined, although Hattabaugh noted
that the district was still making more than a year's growth on
average in all areas.

"These numbers are important measures of how well we're closing the
achievement gaps," Hattabaugh said. "We are glad to see we are still
making more than a year's growth on average, but we'd like to see
those numbers rise, too."

The state test results are also used to calculate the district's
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) results for individual schools.
Adequate Yearly Progress is part of the requirements of the federal No
Child Left Behind Act, which sets targets for school districts. The
targets increase periodically, with the goal being that all students
make AYP by 2014. The targets were raised in 2010-2011, raising the
bar that districts must clear. Using the increased standard, 48 of 171
schools in CMS made AYP, or 28.1 percent. That compares to 28.7
percent a year earlier.

The district also reported that 18 Title I schools were added to the
list of schools in improvement, meaning they did not meet AYP targets.
No schools left improvement status and none made steps toward exiting
improvement status. The total number of Title I schools in school-
improvement status for 2011-2012 is 28. Schools in the first year of
school improvement do not face sanctions; they are expected to
identify areas in need of improvement and work on them. In subsequent
years, schools must offer Supplemental Education Services to students,
and parents may opt to put their children in another school.

The full presentation of state test scores and AYP calculations is

11,000 Runners to Compete in Warrior Dash Carolinas

Warrior Dash is the ultimate event for thrill-seeking athletes and
party-goers. On Saturday, Aug. 27 and Sunday, Aug. 28, fearless
runners will head to 4431 Neck Road, to take on 11 intense obstacles
over 3.08 miles of extreme terrain and celebrate with friends and
family during an all day festival with live music, food and beer.

Warrior Dash will have participants jumping through fire, crawling
through mud pits, climbing over vehicles and working their way through
nine additional grueling obstacles. The first wave of the race will
begin at 10am, followed by waves of 500 racers taking off to battle
the course every half hour until the last group at 4:30pm.

Race Director Alex Yount says, "Warrior Dash is an event that runners
and spectators will never forget. After conquering an insane physical
challenge, racers celebrate with live music, beer and food, alongside
their fellow Warriors, friends and family."

Warrior Dash is nationally partnered with GreenSneakers, an
organization with a uniquely effective and environmentally friendly
fundraising opportunity that delivers local and global impact. With
GreenSneakers and the help of Warriors, donated tennis shoes are given
a second chance at life, keeping them out of local landfills all while
providing a great way for an organization to implement an
environmentally friendly fund raiser. This year with the help of Real
Warriors with Real Heart, GreenSneakers expects up to 300,000 pounds
of donations, equaling 176,000 pairs.

Participants are encouraged to suit up in their best Warrior attire
and are crowned with fuzzy Warrior helmets prior to racing. Turkey
legs and other Warrior grub will be available for purchase. Spectators
are welcome to enjoy the live music playing throughout the day, watch
the Warriors tackle the obstacles near the finish line and participate
in the other activities on site.

For more information, visit, watch the video on the
Red Frog Events' YouTube Channel, or contact Alex Yount at
(630)881-7439 or

Warrior Dash is a mud-crawling, fire-leaping, extreme run from hell.
This fierce running series is held on the most challenging and rugged
terrain across the world. Warriors conquer extreme obstacles, push
their limits and celebrate with live music, beer and Warrior helmets.

"The Biggest Loser" casting in Charlotte Aug. 6

NBC's popular reality series "The Biggest Loser" will be in Charlotte
Aug. 6 holding casting calls as part of a 13-city cross-country search
to find new contestants. Casting producers will be at the Planet
Fitness at 10215-B University City Blvd. in Charlotte that Saturday
from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Individuals and teams of two who have at least
85 lbs. to lose and want to compete for a grand prize of $250,000 are
encouraged to apply for the new season that will begin airing in
January, 2012.. Candidates must be at least 18 years old and legal
U.S. residents.

Further information and details are on the Charlotte Regional Film
Commission website,

Charlotte's resurgent economy gains national notice

If you think the Charlotte region's economy seems to be looking up,
you're right. Southern Business & Development has named the Charlotte
region its 2011 Major Market of the Year, along with New Orleans.

Among the 2010 deals that catapulted Charlotte to the top spot were
Siemens Energy's $135 million expansion that is bringing 825 new jobs,
Hewitt Associates' 463-job expansion and Fifth Third Bancorp's $2
million location that is adding 250 jobs. Charlotte has received four
Honorable Mentions in the last six years.

"From Clearwater Paper's $260 million investment in Cleveland County
that is creating 250 jobs to NutraMax's 203 new jobs in Lancaster
County to CITCO Fund Services 250 jobs in Mecklenburg, 2010 was indeed
a very good year across our region," said Ronnie Bryant, president and
CEO of the Charlotte Regional Partnership. "Even during the recession,
the assets that have long made our region one of the most competitive
remained the same – outstanding accessibility, strong labor pool and a
pro-business environment, not to mention an unparalleled quality of

Unsurprisingly, Southern Business & Development reports that 2009 was
the worst year for economic development in the magazine's 18-year
history. On the other hand, 2010 is the second best since 1994, and
the best year in a dozen, with brisk activity throughout the southern
part of the U.S.

The Charlotte region's success helped lift North Carolina to a second-
place showing for jobs and investment on a per capita basis, close on
the heels of Louisiana, the top finisher, as South Carolina filled the
fourth-place slot. Both Carolinas received Honorable Mentions.

The SB&D 100 only considers the top 100 project. Only those creating
at least 200 select service or manufacturing jobs and/or investing $30
million or more are counted. Additional details on each of the top
markets are here.

A nonprofit, public/private economic development organization, the
Charlotte Regional Partnership allocates and leverages regional
economic development resources to sustain and enhance the economic
growth, vitality and global competitiveness of the Charlotte region.
The 16-county region encompasses Alexander, Anson, Cabarrus, Catawba,
Cleveland, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Stanly and
Union counties in North Carolina and Chester, Chesterfield, Lancaster
and York counties in South Carolina.

CMPD Donation Funds Grier Heights Bike Patrol

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department's Providence Division
recently received a generous donation from donors with the "Self
Help" organization
and a long time resident of the Grier Height's Community. This gesture
has enabled the Providence Division the ability to purchase two
bicycles, uniforms and equipment that will be used to patrol the
community of Grier Heights.

This effective approach to patrolling has proven to provide for much
greater accessibility to different areas of the neighborhood and
allows police officers a much more personal level of engagement with
neighbors. It gives the officers the ability to be much more
proactive in their work by developing relationships with the community
members they serve.

Kids Heart Felt Health Receives $8500 Grant From Mecklenburg Medical Alliance To Expand Services

Kids Heart Felt Health has received an $8500 grant from the Mecklenburg Medical Alliance and Endowment, Inc. (MMAE).  Kids Heart Felt Health is a Charlotte area nonprofit organization that provides children with hands-on activities to instill healthy-living habits and a spirit of community service. The purpose of the grant is to enable Kids Heart Felt Health to expand its program as an after-school enrichment activity for Charlotte area students.

Kids Heart Felt Health is a program that addresses the current childhood obesity problem, while extending its nutritional and healthy-living focus to the broader population of children.

"Rarely have we seen a program that is so well organized and detailed as this one," said JoAnn MacDonald, president of MMAE.  "What really impressed us about this program is that it reaches children of all ages.  It is unique in that it teaches high schoolers about nutrition and gives them opportunities to teach younger children healthy-living habits."

MMAE was founded 75 years ago and receives contributions from physicians, their families, and others interested in community health issues.  MMAE has issued grants in excess of $1 million since it was founded and provides more than $60,000 in grants annually to local organizations that are committed to improving community health in the Charlotte area.           

"We are very grateful to receive this grant from MMAE which will allow us to reach a broader base of children with our program," said Claudine Lovitt, president and founder. "We are especially pleased to receive recognition from an organization that has a long-standing commitment to improving community health and quality of life."           

The Kids Heart Felt Health afterschool program is centered around teaching children nutrition through enjoyable cooking activities that include food contests as well as fitness activities.  At each weekly session, children are told inspirational stories and are given weekly nutrition and character goals to motivate them to reach out to others.  Kids Heart Felt Health periodically organizes healthy food drives in which its participants are able to use what they learn in the program and prepare healthy meals for others in need. 

A new series of classes will begin in August and will teach kids how to prepare healthy lunches.  "While there are several initiatives to improve lunches served in the schools, our program will continue to take the approach of empowering children themselves to live healthier lifestyles. That is the basis of the Kids Heart Felt Health program, and is the focus of our 'Back to School – Healthy Lunches' series that will begin in August," Lovitt said.

Kids Heart Felt Health Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, which means donations to it are tax deductible. A portion of the proceeds of the program will be donated to fund research for the cure for Type 1 diabetes.

For more information or to register for programs, visit the organization's website at To learn more about The Mecklenburg Medical Alliance and Endowment, Inc. , and contribution opportunities, visit its website at


Thursday, July 14, 2011

New Team Presents First Report On Domestic Violence Deaths in Mecklenburg

Findings in a review of four separate domestic violence fatalities
will help Mecklenburg County as a community understand more about the
crime, the victims, the perpetrators and the agencies and
organizations working to prevent it.

"If You Leave Me I Will Kill You" is the title of the first report
from the Mecklenburg County Domestic Violence Fatality Prevention and
Protection Review Team. At its meeting on July 12, 2011, the
Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners heard from team
representatives. Retired District Court Judge Jane Harper is chair of
the DVFRT and she presented the report.

"The title for this report was chosen based on a common factor in
three of the four cases reviewed by the Mecklenburg Team over the past
year," according to the report's introduction. "Three of the four
women heard this threat before her husband, or boyfriend, killed her."

North Carolina legislation created the DVFRT on June 1, 2009 as a
pilot project in Mecklenburg County. In 2008, North Carolina had 81
domestic violence-related homicides and of that number, 11 happened in
Charlotte, according to the report. The legislation provides the
needed legal protection to make it easier for agencies to share case
information in a full review. The BOCC and the Domestic Violence
Community Leadership Team, a group of public and private agency
leaders committed to zero tolerance for domestic violence, supported
the push for the legislation.

Community Support Services, a Mecklenburg County department that
includes the Women's Commission, is lead agency for the effort. The
report includes recommendations for agencies such as law enforcement,
social services, health care providers, families, friends and others
in the community who may be able to help a person in need. Key
recommendations include: increased training about DV for new and
experienced police officers; increased public awareness about signs
and impacts of DV exposure; and increased awareness of the requirement
to report DV exposure of children to Child Protective Services.

"This first year report points out the ongoing need to educate the
public about DV signs and symptoms and the available resources in this
community," CSS Director Stacy Lowry said. "When more people – family,
friends, co-workers – recognize DV and reach out to help, we will have
a safer community."

Help is available through the Mecklenburg Women's Commission at
704-336-3210 and through the United Family Services Shelter for
Battered Women at 704-332-2513. Read the entire report online and find
additional information about domestic violence education, prevention
and counseling.

T-Mobile doubles speed on Charlotte 4G network

T-Mobile USA, Inc. has announced that the company is doubling the
theoretical peak download speed of its 4G network in Charlotte and
Raleigh, as well as surrounding areas. In addition to these cities, T-
Mobile announced its faster HSPA+ 42 network is now available in 54
additional markets to reach more than 170 million people in 152 markets.

T-Mobile expects that in addition to customers experiencing speeds
twice as fast as T-Mobile's current 4G network on compatible devices,
customers will also enjoy increased network capacity and reliability.
Offering a compelling 4G experience across a broad lineup of devices,
America's largest 4G network allows customers to stay connected in new
and innovative ways in more places than ever before. From downloading
files to streaming video or surfing the latest social networking
sites, T-Mobile's faster network provides a richer than ever mobile
data experience, with anytime high-speed access to the data and
information customers need and desire.

"At T-Mobile, we are committed to delivering even faster speeds and a
better overall network than ever before to our customers in Charlotte
and Raleigh," said Michael Miess, vice president and general manager,
Carolinas, T-Mobile USA. "We have invested significantly in our
network in the Charlotte and Raleigh areas, so that residents can
experience more consistent 4G speeds on a variety of 4G devices. There
really is no better time to be a T-Mobile customer in North Carolina."

With this announcement, T-Mobile's faster, HSPA+42 network is
available in the majority of the Charlotte, including the following
neighborhoods and landmarks:
· Gastonia
· Matthews
· Pineville
· Concord
· Kannapolis
· Huntersville
· Salisbury
· Carowinds Theme Park
· Time Warner Cable Arena
· Bank of America Stadium
· NASCAR Hall of Fame
· Quail Hollow Country Club

In Raleigh, the HSPA+ 42 network is available in the following
neighborhoods and landmarks:
· Apex
· Morrisville
· Garner
· RBC Center
· Raleigh Durham International Airport
· Research Triangle Park
· Duke University
· University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
· Crabtree Mall

In these areas and across the Carolinas, T-Mobile has invested nearly
$48 million in continuous network upgrades since the start of 2010,
and the company continues to invest heavily in the area. T-Mobile now
has more than 200 cell sites operating 4G service in the Charlotte
area, and 100 in the Raleigh area, building on the strength of
America's Largest 4G Network™.

T-Mobile's portfolio of 4G products gives customers ultra-fast access
to the content they want at home or on the go. The company recently
introduced the T-Mobile® Rocket® 3.0 laptop stick, its first HSPA+ 42-
capable device, offering average download speeds on our HSPA+ 42
network approaching 10Mbps with peak speeds of 27 Mbps. T-Mobile also
continues to expand its 4G device lineup with innovative 4G handsets
like the new HTC Sensation™ 4G and the upcoming T-Mobile myTouch® 4G
Slide. In the last year, T-Mobile has launched more than a dozen4G-
capable smartphones, tablets and mobile broadband products, and the
company expects to launch its first HSPA+ 42 smartphone later this year.

T-Mobile 4G markets where 42Mbps service is launching today:
Allentown, Penn.; Anderson, S.C.; Asheville, N.C.; Ann Arbor, Mich.;
Baltimore, Md.; Barnstable, Mass.; Bellingham, Wash.; Bloomington,
Ind.; Boise, Idaho; Boston, Mass.; Bremerton, Wash.; Bridgeport-
Stamford-Norwalk, Conn.; Brunswick, Ga.; Carson City, Nev.; Charlotte,
N.C.; Charlottesville, Va.; Chico, Calif.; Coeur d'Alene, Idaho;
Eugene, Ore.; Flagstaff, Ariz.; Flint, Mich.; Greensboro, N.C.;
Greenville, S.C.; Harrisburg, Penn.; Hartford, Conn.; Indianapolis,
Ind.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Lafayette, Ind.; Lancaster, Penn.; Laredo,
Texas; Lynchburg, Va.; Manchester, N.H.; Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.;
New Haven, Conn.; Ogden, Utah; Providence; R.I.; Provo, Utah; Raleigh-
Cary, N.C.; Redding, Calif.; Reno-Sparks, Nev.; Richmond, Va.;
Roanoke, Va.; Rockford, Ill.; Salem, Ore.; Scranton-Wilkes-Barre,
Penn.; Spartanburg, S.C.; State College, Penn.; Tallahassee, Fla.;
Terre Haute, Ind.; Tucson, Ariz.; Washington, D.C.; Wichita Falls,
Texas; Winchester, Va.; Winston-Salem, N.C.; Worcester, Mass. and
York, Penn.

*T-Mobile's HSPA+ 4G network, including increased speeds, is not
available everywhere. See coverage details at

For more information on where T-Mobile offers 4G service, please visit

About T-Mobile USA, Inc.
Based in Bellevue, Wash., T-Mobile USA, Inc. is the U.S. wireless
operation of Deutsche Telekom AG. By the end of the first quarter of
2011, approximately 128 million mobile customers were served by the
mobile communication segments of the Deutsche Telekom group — 33.6
million by T-Mobile USA — all via a common technology platform based
on GSM and UMTS and additionally HSPA+/HSPA+42. T-Mobile USA's
innovative wireless products and services help empower people to
connect to those who matter most. Multiple independent research
studies continue to rank T-Mobile USA among the highest in numerous
regions throughout the U.S. in wireless customer care and call
quality. For more information, please visit T-
Mobile is a federally registered trademark of Deutsche Telekom AG. For
further information on Deutsche Telekom, please visit

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Park And Rec Teaming With Hands On Charlotte To Build Lincoln Heights Park

To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, Mecklenburg
County Park and Recreation and local nonprofit agency Hands On
Charlotte are partnering to raise money to build an 11-acre park in
Charlotte's Lincoln Heights neighborhood during the week leading up to
Sunday, Sept. 11, 2011.

"We are very excited to partner with Hands On Charlotte to make this
park a reality," said Jim Garges, director of Mecklenburg County Park
and Recreation. "The master plan for our department is to have a park
within six blocks of every home. This is a major step in realizing
that goal."

Hands On Charlotte (HOC) is organizing the Lincoln Heights park build
as part of the annual National Day of Service and Remembrance, an
effort to equip more than 1 million Americans to serve their
communities on September 11. Locally, HOC plans to engage at least
1,000 volunteers at the Lincoln Heights park and at other projects as
part of its 9/11 Week of Service.

"This park will give residents the means to commemorate the tenth
anniversary of 9/11 with service," said Lisa Quisenberry, HOC's
executive director. "I can't think of a better way to remember the
lives lost on 9/11 than through service. Our service to each other in
times of tragedy and mourning shows what makes this country so special."

In addition to recruiting volunteers to build the Lincoln Heights
park, HOC is the effort's primary fundraiser. With total costs
estimated near $200,000 including playground equipment that must be
purchased weeks in advance, HOC is looking for donations. US Airways
has signed on as the volunteer event's primary sponsor. Still, the
project requires additional financing.

"We still need businesses and individuals to step up and help us fund
this event," Quisenberry said. "We are optimistic about reaching our
goal, but we need more backers to come onboard."

To donate, visit click on "Funds,"
"Make a Donation," and select the Hats Off Fund or visit

24 Hours of Booty Kicks off Fun Partnership with Carolina Panthers and Sir Purr

24 Hours of Booty, Inc., which runs the Official 24-Hour Cycling Event
of LIVESTRONG and the only national 24-hour road cycling charity event
in the country, and the Carolina Panthers are teaming up to fight

Through the partnership, Panthers mascot Sir Purr is fielding the
Carolina Panthers Keep Pounding Team for the 10th Annual 24 Hours of
Booty presented by Levine Cancer Institute on July 29-30 and is asking
for the public's support as he builds momentum for his cool-cat
cycling team.

Leading up to the 24-hour charity cycling event, Sir Purr will host
"Ride with Sir Purr" at five area locations to raise money for and
awareness of the fight against cancer. Sir Purr and his Keep Pounding
Fund Team will be riding a stationary bike for an hour during which
time passers-by can make a donation to ride on a stationary bike
alongside him for five minutes and receive a photo and giveaways.
Separate donations can be made for a chance to join Sir Purr on the
Carolina Panthers Keep Pounding team.

Upcoming "Ride with Sir Purr" events:

• Thursday, July 14 – 5:30-9 a.m., 11:30-1:30 p.m. – Center City
Green Market at Trade & Tryon
• Sunday, July 17 – 3-5 p.m. – Harris Teeter Morrocroft Village (6701
Morrison Blvd.)
• Thursday, July 21 – 6-8 p.m. – "Bottoms Up for Booty" at The Olde
Mecklenburg Brewery (215 Southside Drive)
• Friday, July 22 – 6-8 p.m. – Selwyn Pub (2801 Selwyn Avenue)
• Saturday, July 23 – 3-5 p.m. – Belk SouthPark – 2nd Floor entrance
inside (4400 Sharon Road)

For more information about the 'Ride with Sir Purr' events, visit (
or call 24 Hours of Booty at 704-365-4417.

"Our organization is very passionate about the fight against cancer
and very appreciative of the all that 24 Hours of Booty and the
participants have done to support the Keep Founding Fund," said Riley
Fields, director of community relations for the Carolina Panthers.
"Each year, the event brings more opportunities to get involved so we
are excited about Sir Purr's participation and having a team for the
tenth anniversary of the ride. 24 Hours of Booty is an outstanding
organization that the Carolina Panthers is proud to stand behind as we
team up together to find a cure for this disease.

"Sir Purr's involvement at the start of our event has become a fun
annual tradition and is an event highlight for our survivors, other
riders and bystanders," said Basil Lyberg, executive director of 24
Hours of Booty. "We appreciate the amazing support of the Carolina
Panthers and Sir Purr who have gone above and beyond by forming a team
and bringing our cause out into the community. As the only feline who
rides in 24 Hours of Booty, we are proud to have such a cool cat among
our riders and supporters."

About the Keep Pounding Fund
The Keep Pounding Fund was established in 2004 as a partnership
between the Carolina Panthers and Carolinas Healthcare Foundation. The
fund provides on-going support for cancer research efforts at
Carolinas Medical Center. Since its inception, the Keep Pounding Fund
has generated over $1.2 million for cancer research.

About 24 Hours of Booty
24 Hours of Booty, Inc. – which runs the Official 24-Hour Cycling
Event of LIVESTRONG and the only national 24-hour road cycling charity
event in the country – is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit charity
located in Charlotte that provides extraordinary cycling events that
are safe, fun, and open to all levels of cycling ability. Its mission
is to conduct 24-hour cycling events that increase public awareness,
funds, and support for LIVESTRONG and local cancer organizations.
Local organizations includeThe Keep Pounding Fund at Carolinas Medical
Center and the Brain Tumor Fund for the Carolinas in Charlotte, the
Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults in Columbia, Md., and Aflac Cancer
Center of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

In 24 Hours of Booty's nine-year history, more than 9,100 riders have
raised more than $5 million. The 10th Annual 24 Hours of Booty
presented by Levine Cancer Institute in Charlotte is scheduled to roll
on the Myers Park "Booty Loop" from 7 p.m. Friday, July 29 to 7 p.m.
Saturday, July 30, 2011. 24 Hours of Booty will also host the Third
Annual 24 Hours of Booty of Columbia, Md. at the Gateway Business Park
"Booty Loop" on August 27-28, 2011 and the Second Annual 24 Hours of
Booty of Atlanta at the Stone Mountain "Booty Loop" on Oct. 1-2, 2011.
For more information, call 704-365-4417 or

Get updates and the inside scoop about 24 Hours of Booty! Follow us on
Twitter at and onFacebook at

"The First Ladies" Features Presidents' Wives With North Carolina Connections

Reviewed by Jessica Stafford

It is said "behind every great man, there stands a great woman," a
statement no less true when it comes to the first office of the
country. In "The First Ladies: From Martha Washington to Mamie
Eisenhower, An Intimate Portrait of the Women Who Shaped America,"
Feather Schwartz Foster gives readers a taste of the impact that the
First Ladies have had throughout the years. From Martha Washington to
Mamie Eisenhower, we discover details that affected the presidency for
better or for worse.

Among these influential women, are the North Carolina educated Sarah
Polk as well as North Carolina native Dolley Madison (in photo), who
was known not only for her charm and charisma, but also for her
leadership during the presidency and her bravery during the War of 1812.

By highlighting personality traits and the activities of these women
leading up to, during, and post their White House days, Foster gives a
perspective of the first ladies not often seen in the press or history
books. Her audiences like her because she has a light style of writing
that is full of information and you learn what the First Ladies are
like as people and not just a series of facts.

Foster has been an independent historian of the presidents for nearly
4 decades with a clear passion for the subject with the personal
library to prove it. She states that her goal in "The First Ladies"
was to make these remarkable women "readable" and to inspire readers
to want to learn more about these incomparable ladies. When asked
about her favorite First Lady, Foster lists Ellen Axson Wilson as the
one she would like to have living down the street. Foster describers
her as having a very generous nature and as being a talented artist,
the type of person she gravitates to.

With Independence Day upon us, "The First Ladies" draws our attention
to the top office of the government and how it would be so different
without these remarkable women. It is the perfect time to pick up this
book and learn about these women as more than just high profile wives,
but as fellow Americans.

"The First Ladies: From Martha Washington to Mamie Eisenhower, An
Intimate Portrait of the Women Who Shaped America" (Sourcebooks;
$12.99; February 2011)

Available at bookstores, online, Kindle, and Nook