Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Charlotte Area Scarf, Hat and Wig Drive for American Cancer Society

Doing Some Spring Cleaning? Donate New and Gently Used Items to
American Cancer Society Scarf, Hat and Wig Drive.
Donated items will benefit women experiencing side effects of cancer
treatment.

The American Cancer Society has launched a scarf, hat and wig drive
just in time for spring cleaning. New and gently used items can be
dropped off at the following locations:
· Fusions Salon, 455 W. John St., Matthews
· NAKAO International Salon, 411 S. Sharon Amity, Charlotte
· New Creations, 2 Bank of America Plaza, Charlotte
· Parasol Salon, 5126 Park Rd. #2A, Charlotte
· Retro Junque (booth on isle 16 inside The Sleepy Poet Antique
Mall), 4450 South Blvd., Charlotte
Donated items will be used in the American Cancer Society Wig
Boutique, a free resource for women experiencing the side effects of
cancer treatment. For information, contact Leeanna.perry@cancer.org or
704-553-5378.

About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly
a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer.
As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, we
fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every
community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing
cancer or detecting it early; helping people get well by being there
for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through
investment in groundbreaking discovery; and by fighting back by
rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying
communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation's largest non-
governmental investor in cancer research, contributing about $3.4
billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a
result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and
countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this
year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us any time, day or
night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Giveaway-Contest: Experience the world's largest Motorcycle Show in Charlotte

The Charlotte Progressive International Motorcycle Show - February
24th-26th, is the largest of its kind, and has been hosted in 10
different locations for the 2011-2012 season. Each year since 1982,
the events have provided hundreds of thousands of people with new
motorcycle products and technology ranging from Custom Bikes and
Cruisers to ATV's, Scooter, Racing Bikes, and Concept Bikes.

The International Motorcycle Shows are back for 2012 in Charlotte to
give motorcyclists, enthusiasts and families the perfect weekend
getaway. All ages are welcome, and special show features like the
Kawasaki Design-A-Bike provide a great experience and kids. The
available seminars at the Learning Curve are great for women to learn
how to ride, and the Smage-Bros Stunt Show is great for the whole
family.

Riders and enthusiasts will favor the thousands of products available
in the Marketplace. With over a dozen show features at the Charlotte
Progressive, International Motorcycle show, there's something for
everyone to enjoy. Doors open on Friday the 24th at 4 PM until 9 PM.
The show is open all weekend from 9:30 AM- 8 PM on Saturday and 10 AM
- 5 PM Sunday. Buy Tickets online anytime, using code "MOTOINF" at
checkout for $3 off or pay at the door for full price. All kids under
11 are free on Sunday, and children under 6 are always free.

More information and register for the Charlotte event here:
http://www.motorcycleshows.com/charlotte

Beaver Management Project To Help Protect Parks, Public Safety

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation's Nature Preserves and Natural
Resources Division will soon begin wildlife management projects that
will focus on the reduction and removal of the beaver populations at
Beatty Park and Park Road Park. The purpose of these projects is to
prevent further damage to the numerous trees that surround the lakes,
to protect the trees surrounding Lake Pointe Hall (Beatty), and to
improve public safety. The projects will begin as early as March 2012.

Staff will address the issue by laying wire fencing around shoreline
trees to prevent further damage caused by beavers. In Beatty Park,
more than 50 trees have already been protected. As a last resort, the
County will hire a wildlife damage control agent to set up traps to
control the beaver, and captured beavers will be put down.

Beatty Park

A recent survey of the trees within 50 feet of the shoreline
surrounding the lake at Beatty Park yielded 196 hardwood trees (4
inches in diameter or larger) that had mild to fatal damage from
beavers removing the bark. Scores of trees were chewed so severely
that they have fallen or will fall within the next few weeks.
Additionally, innumerable smaller shrubs and saplings were cut down
along many sections of the shoreline, which places the banks in danger
of eroding due to loss of vegetation.

Park Road Park

Park Road Park does not have the same level of activity, but there is
currently significant damage to many of the shoreline shrubs and small
trees. As such, the department wants to proactively address the issue
before it gets out of control. Additionally, the beaver lodge is
located on a critical slope and removal will be necessary to ensure
the long-term soil stability of the earthen structure.

The North American beaver is our largest rodent species, with adults
reaching up to 4 feet long and weighing as much as 60 pounds. They can
live for up to 20 years and live throughout most of the United States.
Their primary food source is cambium, the soft tissue just below the
bark of many hardwood tree species.

Beavers are important members of our wildlife because they help build
wetlands, reduce stream erosion, increase biodiversity and,
ultimately, help create forests. Depending on the location and size of
the population, beavers are typically allowed to do their work
unmolested in many of our nature preserves and in some of our parks.
However, the extensive damage, concern for public safety and the
threat of building damage requires the removal of these specific
groups of beaver in Beatty Park and Park Road Park.

For more information, contact the Nature Preserves and Natural
Resources Division at 704.432.4531.

Free history program at Duke Mansion: Trail of History: BBQ & Politics

Since the days of George Washington, political candidates have
connected with constituents at community barbecues, including the well-
known Mallard Creek Barbecue, which began in 1929.

The Duke Mansion and Levine Museum of the New South explore that tasty
tradition in Mecklenburg County with a free showing of the CPCC
Television show, "Trail of History: BBQ & Politics," followed by
conversation with CPCC Professor Gary Ritter and interviewees from the
show. The program takes place on Sunday, March 4 at 3 pm at The Duke
Mansion, 400 Hermitage Road in Charlotte.

Reservations are required. To reserve a spot, email
ecovington@tlwf.org or call 704/714 -4445.
Learn how the combination of churches and barbecue set the tone for
political campaigning in the South and helped increase involvement in
politics and the democratic process.

"Trail of History: BBQ & Politics" is part of the Explore History!
series sponsored by Levine Museum and The Duke Mansion. For more
details, visitwww.dukemansion.org.

Ric Killian completes filing for 9th Congressional District

State Representative Ric Killian has completed the filing requirements to become a candidate for North Carolina's 9th Congressional District.  Killian is currently serving on active duty with the U.S. Army in Afghanistan, and will return home in a few weeks to campaign in the Republican primary on May 8th. 

"The challenges facing our nation, both at home and abroad, are extraordinary", said Killian, "Our nation needs leaders with the ability to develop solutions to our problems that will improve the lives of all citizens".  "My experience in business, the military, and the state house of representatives uniquely qualify me to represent the citizens of the 9th District in the U.S. House of Representatives".

Killian thanked Rep. Myrick for her service to the nation, stating "She fought against runaway spending, and she always provided excellent service to her constituents, and that will continue if I am elected".

Killian has fifteen years of experience in leadership positions in the home building and real estate industry.  He has been self employed, and worked in both privately held and publicly traded companies.  "I understand the challenges of being a business owner and meeting corporate earnings estimates.  I will take this real world experience to Washington."

An Army Reserve Colonel, Killian was called to active service for combat duty in Kabul, Afghanistan. He will return within the next several weeks, allowing him time to campaign prior to the primary election.  Commissioned from West Point in 1986, Killian served in the US Army until 1991, and then transferred to the U.S. Army Reserve, where he continues to serve.  He earned the Bronze Star Medal during a tour of duty in Iraq, and his regular Army Reserve assignment is with the Office of the Secretary of Defense.  He earned of Master of Strategic Studies in from the U.S. Army War College in 2011.

In the North Carolina House, Killian has built a reputation as a fiscal conservative, achieving high ratings from business and conservative groups. Elected in 2006, Ric is now is his third term representing the southwestern portion of Charlotte.  He is Chairman of the Appropriations/Transportation Committee overseeing the $4 Billion Transportation budget, and Chairman of the Homeland Security, Military, & Veterans Affairs Committee.  He also serves on the Education and Transportation Committees. 

Killian wants to continue his lifetime of service to the nation in Congress.  He believes we must focus on the economy and our fiscal crisis.  "Our fiscal crisis is the greatest threat to our national security", says Killian.  "As the second largest banking city in the nation, Charlotte needs a representative who will lead this effort, and champion its interests in Washington".  He has been married to his wife Debbie since 1991.  They are members of St. Matthew Catholic Church, and are raising their four children in the Ballantyne area of south Charlotte.






Charlotte Rescue Mission's Dove's Nest 20th Anniversary Open House Feb. 26

The Charlotte area community is invited to Dove's Nest's 20th
Anniversary Open House Sunday, February 26, 2012 from Noon-2pm. See
how Dove's Nest helps recovering addicted women, 1814 Euclid Avenue
(off East Blvd. in Dilworth).

Dove's Nest is a free 120-day Christian residential recovery program
for homeless and at risk women who are addicted to drugs and/or
alcohol. Dove's Nest is committed to helping women break the
destructive cycle of addiction and poverty for themselves and their
families.

Charlotte Rescue Mission main phone number: 704.333.HOPE

Free Pet Health Clinic March 1 with Dr. Katherine Queck

To cap off National Pet Dental Month, a local Charlotte vet practice -
The Carolinas Animal Hospital & Dental Clinic on York Center Drive in
Charlotte - will be hosting a free community wide, one-day pet dental
health clinic Thursday, March 1.

The founder of the clinic and a nationally acclaimed veterinarian, Dr.
Katerine Queck, will be using a new product called OraStrip QuickCheck
Canine. The strip is rubbed along a dog's gums and instantly tells you
whether your dog has periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease within dogs is a big issue lately as it's been
discovered it can start as early as 5 months into a dog's life and can
lead to a myriad of other health problems.

To learn more, call the clinic at 704-588-9788.

The Paintings of Scott Avett: Exploring Story and Spirituality, Free and Open to Public Feb. 25

"The Paintings of Scott Avett: Exploring Story and Spirituality," an
exhibit of the paintings of Scott Avett, artist, musician and founding
member of The Avett Brothers, opens to the public Feb. 25, 10 am - 4
pm, at The Morrison condominiums, 532 Governor Morrison St. in
Charlotte's SouthPark neighborhood.

In 2003, a young painter named Scott Avett walked into artist Tom
Schulz's Empathinc. gallery in Charlotte, NC. The two quickly realized
they shared many of the same ideas about art. They both valued the
collaborative and spiritual aspects of the creative process; and they
both saw their work as open-ended narratives – layered stories that
would grow richer as they were shared. In 2011, wishing to continue
those early conversations about faith, fine art and storytelling,
Schulz and his wife, Rev. Sheila Ennis, envisioned this event as a way
to share Avett's work, as well as the work of Charlotte-based non-
profit, The Educational Center.

Original works and commemorative posters ($50) will be available for
sale.

See more at http://artstoryspirit.com/

Monday, February 20, 2012

Mayor and Housing Coalition to Host Interfaith Summit on Affordable Housing and Homelessness

Mayor Anthony Foxx and the Charlotte Mecklenburg Coalition for Housing
are hosting an Interfaith Summit on affordable housing and
homelessness on Friday, March 9, 2012 from 8:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. at
The Park Expo and Conference Center (800 Briar Creek Road).

The summit is designed to further engage faith communities in the
effort to end and prevent homelessness in Charlotte and to share what
actions can and need to be done today to work toward this goal.
Congregations are invited to register up to three people. The event is
geared toward the faith community but is open to the public. Pre-
registration is required by March 1, 2012.

To register for the event, go to: http://housingcoalition.charlottenc.gov

The Keynote speaker is Rev. Floyd Flake, Senior Pastor at The Greater
Allen A.M.E. Cathedral of New York. Rev. Flake has established a
reputation for developing innovative initiatives to revitalize urban
commercial and residential communities.

The Interfaith Summit will include a viewing of the documentary Souls
of our Neighbors: Fears, Facts & Affordable Housing and a Can We Talk
dialogue on the issues addressed in the documentary. The dialogue will
be facilitated by the City of Charlotte Community Relations Committee,
Mecklenburg Ministries and Community Building Initiative. The summit
will also include a Call To Action where congregations will learn the
concrete next steps they can take to assist the Homeless Services
Network agencies that are supporting the effort to end and prevent
homelessness.

Event details:
Friday, March 9, 2012
8:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
The Park Expo and Conference Center
800 Briar Creek Road
Charlotte, NC 28205

Agenda:

8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.

Registration & Coffee
Homeless Services Network Agency Showcase

9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Mayor Foxx Welcome
Rev. Floyd Flake Keynote

10:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Souls of Our Neighbors Documentary
Can We Talk - small group breakout sessions

12:30 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Lunch

1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Large group discussion
Call To Action - next steps for your congregation

For more information or to register for the Interfaith Summit, please
visit: http://housingcoalition.charlottenc.gov or contact Pam Young
at 704-336-3337, pyoung@charlottenc.gov<mailto:pyoung@charlottenc.gov>.

Last chance to see The Mint Museum's Chanel and Aesthetic Ambitions exhibitions is Sunday

If you've been meaning to head over to Mint Museum Randolph to see two
of the acclaimed exhibitions on display, "Chanel: Designs for the
Modern Woman" and "Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's
Faience Manufacturing Company," you'd better hurry. After this Sunday,
February 26, they'll both be gone.

The museum's Chanel exhibition, drawn from its own Historic Costume &
Fashionable Dress collection, has earned praise in national and
international publications, including Marie Claire (www.marieclaire.com/blog/fashion-museum-exhibitions)
, which declared it one of "10 fashion-focused museum exhibitions you
can't miss"; MTV's fashion blog (http://fora.mtv.ca/2012/01/12-fashion-exhibits-we-want-to-see-in-2012/
); and EcoSalon (http://ecosalon.com/from-azzedine-alaia-to-yves-saint-laurent-the-fashion-exhibits-of-2012/
). The exhibition presents the iconic haute couture designs of
Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel (1883-1971), who remains a pivotal figure
among the major designers who shaped the landscape of women's fashion
in the 20th century. She pioneered a new look for women in the early
1900s, creating clothes that were primarily comfortable, yet lasting
in both their construction and style. Replacing the restrictive corset
with casual elegance, her fashion repertoire included simple suits and
dresses, women's trousers, costume jewelry, and perfume.

Chanel: Designs for the Modern Woman includes works dating from the
1920s to the present, augmented by a selection of accessories,
sketches, and other fashion-related materials. Sponsored by U.S.
Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management, the exhibition
opened May 21.
Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's Faience
Manufacturing Company presents unique examples of American art pottery
from the late 1800s. During the 1880s, the Faience Manufacturing
Company (1881-1892) of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, earned critical acclaim
for producing ornamental wares that introduced a new standard of
excellence in American ceramics. These bold and eclectic wares
displayed a synthesis of Japanese, Chinese, and Islamic influences
characteristic of the Aesthetic Movement style. The firm owed its
artistic and commercial success to Edward Lycett (1833-1910), an
English china painter who became its artistic director in 1884.

Lycett and his team of decorators produced pieces that were sold in
the foremost jewelry and china shops throughout the United States,
such as Tiffany & Co. in New York and Bailey Banks and Biddle in
Philadelphia. Nearly 40 objects drawn from public and private
collections are on display, including vases, ewers, plates, and other
decorative wares. The exhibition, which opened September 17, is
organized and circulated by the University of Richmond Museums,
Virginia.

The Chanel exhibition is slated to be replaced by a cutting-edge show
originating from the museum's Historic Costume & Fashionable Dress
collection, opening May 12, 2012. Details will be announced closer to
opening. Aesthetic Ambitions will be replaced by a very special
exhibition of pottery by a Charlotte artist with deep ties to The Mint
Museum. As previously announced, Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery
of Herb Cohen will bring together approximately 60 works, including
selections from the Mint's permanent collection and loans from
numerous private collections. Many of Cohen's works feature intricate,
abstract patterns carved into the clay surface, along with innovative
experimentations in glazing. The Manhattan-born Cohen settled in
Charlotte in the late 1950s, where he joined the staff of The Mint
Museum and served as its acting director from 1968 to 1969. In the
1970s he moved to Blowing Rock, N.C. to establish his own studio, but
returned to Charlotte in 2010, where he remains active in the local
arts community. This exhibition is organized as part of the Mint's
celebration of its 75th anniversary and will be on view from April 7,
2012 through January 6, 2013.

For more information on these and other exhibitions, visit
mintmuseum.org. Select images from Chanel: Designs for the Modern
Woman;Aesthetic Ambitions: Edward Lycett and Brooklyn's Faience
Manufacturing Company; and Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb
Cohen are available upon request. (Media members please note: All
exhibitions discussed in this news release are at Mint Museum
Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road, NOT the uptown Charlotte location of the
Mint. Please be sure to make this clear to your readers, viewers and
listeners.)

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
the largest collection between New Orleans and Washington D.C., The
Mint Museum offers its visitors inspiring and transformative
experiences through art from around the world via innovative
collections, ground-breaking exhibitions, riveting educational
programs, and profound scholarship. The Mint Museum is a non-profit,
visual arts institution comprised of two dynamic facilities: Mint
Museum Uptown and Mint Museum Randolph.
Located in what was the original branch of the United States Mint,
Mint Museum Randolph opened in 1936 in Charlotte's Eastover
neighborhood as the first art museum in North Carolina. Today, in a
beautiful park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage
with the art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts,
historic costume and fashionable dress, European and African art,
among other collections. Resources include a reference library with
over 18,000 volumes, a theater featuring lectures and performances,
and a museum shop offering merchandise that complements both the
permanent collection and special exhibitions.

Mint Museum Uptown houses the internationally renowned Craft + Design
collection, as well as outstanding collections of American,
contemporary, and European art. Designed by Machado and Silvetti
Associates of Boston, the five-story, 145,000-square-foot facility
combines inspiring architecture with cutting-edge exhibitions to
provide visitors with unparalleled educational and cultural
experiences. Located in the heart of Charlotte's burgeoning center
city, Mint Museum Uptown is an integral part of the Levine Center for
the Arts, a cultural campus that includes the Bechtler Museum of
Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and
Culture, the Knight Theater, and the Duke Energy Center. Mint Museum
Uptown also features a wide range of visitor amenities, including the
240-seat James B. Duke Auditorium, the Lewis Family Gallery, art
studios, a restaurant, and a museum shop. For more information, check
out mintmuseum.org.

Thompson Child & Family Focus Kicks Off ‘March Madness for Reading’

Thompson Child & Family Focus, a nonprofit provider of treatment, care
and education for at‑risk children and families, will hold its 16th
annual March Madness for Reading March 1 – 30 at the agency's Child
Development Center at 1646 Clanton Road. This year's theme, "Hooked
on Books," will engage families, Thompson staff, and the community-at-
large, in numerous activities to inspire a passion for reading that
fosters lifelong learning habits.

Thompson is seeking volunteers to read to the children for 15-30
minute time slots on Tuesdays or Thursdays from 9 to 10:30 a.m. or
3:30 to 4:30 p.m. To volunteer, contact Raechelle Berry, rberry@thompsoncff.org
, 704.644.4396.

Thompson's March Madness for Reading has attracted thousands of
corporate and community volunteers since its inception in 1997. Last
year, volunteers read more than 20,000 books.

The public is also invited to make donations to help provide books.
Each $5 donation will provide one book that includes an inscription
with donor's name. You may donate online at http://www.thompsoncff.org/March_Madness_Donate.html
or mail a check to Thompson Child & Family Focus, 6800 Saint Peter's
Lane, Matthews, NC 28105.

The Thompson Child Development Center serves up to 150 children from
birth to 5 years of age from its state-of-the-art facility on Clanton
Road in west Charlotte. The Center provides North Carolina five-star
licensed early childhood education to a diverse population – many of
whom are exposed to domestic violence, substance abuse, and
impoverished environments. A large percentage of the children
enrolled have been diagnosed with special needs or have high risk
factors.

Charlotte-Area Preschoolers Dance to Win $30K for Levine Children's Hospital

Primrose School at Afton Village will host a Princes & Princesses
Dance Party to encourage families to get moving for healthy lifestyles
and enter the Primrose Schools® Family Dance-off to win as much as
$30,000 for Levine Children's Hospital. In each classroom, students
will dance for healthy bodies and happy hearts during their individual
music classes. Teachers, parents and special guests, including Emily
Bootcheck of Levine Children's Hospital, will be encouraged to jump in
and dance along with the children.

The event is part of the Primrose Schools® Family Dance-off campaign
to fight childhood obesity. In partnership with Children's Miracle
Network Hospitals®, Primrose is asking parents to submit a 30-second
home video of their family's best dance moves. From Saturday, Feb. 25
to Friday, March 23, contestants can upload their videos to
FamilyDanceoff.com, and visitors can cast one vote per day for their
favorite video. Each week the four videos with the most votes will
advance to the finalist round. Finalists will compete for the grand
prize of $5,000 and a $30,000 donation to their Children's Miracle
Network Hospital. The second prize winner will receive $3,000 and a
$20,000 donation to their Children's Miracle Network Hospital, and the
third prize family will win $1,500 and a $15,000 donation to their
Children's Miracle Network Hospital. In addition, all 16 weekly
finalists will receive a $1,000 donation to their Children's Miracle
Network Hospital.

Who: – Primrose School at Afton Village preschoolers
and their parents

– Judy Walker, franchise owner, Primrose School at Afton Village

– Emily Bootcheck, Children's Miracle Network Hospitals representative
for Levine Children's Hospital and associate development officer for
the Carolinas Healthcare Foundation

When: Monday, Feb. 27 at 10:00 a.m.

Where: Primrose School at Afton Village at 5401 Vining
Street NW, Concord, NC 28027

About Primrose Schools

Celebrating 30 years of service in 2012, Primrose Schools is the
nation's leader in providing well-rounded early childhood education
and nurturing child care services in more than 240 schools in 17
states. The foundation for Primrose Schools is based on a dedicated
and passionate group of early childhood professionals providing high
quality education with a balance of learning, character development
and play.

Primrose Schools offers the Balanced Learning® curriculum, which
blends teacher-directed and child-initiated activities and is
consistently delivered in all Primrose schools nationwide. This
exclusive curriculum is standards-based and enables teachers to help
children build a foundation of knowledge and skills that will enable
them to move successfully from one level of development to the next.

Primrose is the first preschool organization in the country to require
all of its schools to become SACS CASI or NCA CASI accredited.
Primrose Schools stands behind its commitment to deliver an
exceptional early childhood experience with the Primrose Guarantee, a
parent's assurance of complete satisfaction. For more information,
visit www.PrimroseSchools.com.

About Children's Miracle Network Hospitals

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals® raises funds for 170 children's
hospitals across North America, which, in turn, use the money where
it's needed the most. When a donation is given it stays in the
community, helping local kids. Since 1983, Children's Miracle Network
Hospitals has raised more than $4 billion, most of it $1 at a time.
These donations have gone to support research and training, purchase
equipment, and pay for uncompensated care, all in support of the
mission to save and improve the lives of as many children as possible.
Learn more at www.CMNHospitals.org.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

früsh Now Available at Lowe's Foods, Ingles Markets and BI-LO

Origin Food Group, LLC's früsh yogurt & Fruit Shakes are now for sale
at Lowe's Foods, Ingles Markets and BI-LOs throughout North and South
Carolina.

The früsh line of innovative and healthy yogurt fruit shakes may be
found in the dairy cases at 110 Lowe's Foods stores, 101 Ingles
Markets and 145 BI-LOs throughout the Carolinas. Debuting in four
flavors: strawberry, blueberry, peach and strawberry banana and
available in two sizes, 8.4 fl. oz. and 32 fl. oz., früsh is designed
for a healthy on-the-go lifestyle.

"This is a home-grown relationship among four Carolinas -based
companies," said Don Greenlee, general manager of Origin Food Group.
"Lowe's Foods from Winston-Salem, Ingles Markets from Asheville, BI-LO
from Mauldin, S.C. and Origin Food Group, based in Statesville. We
wanted to make our healthy line of products, created for today's fast-
paced lifestyles, accessible initially all over the Carolinas. Lowe's
Foods, Ingles Markets and BI-LO are helping us do just that.

Last month, Origin Food Group held a ribbon-cutting ceremony presided
over by Gov. Bev Perdue at its new facility in Iredell County where it
is producing its line of health-oriented food products, beginning with
früsh.

The company is investing more than $7 million to build and upfit its
state-of-the-art food processing facility off of Interstate 40. Origin
Food Group is creating 28 jobs initially, and employ as many as 40 -
50 people by 2014.

"früsh is the first of many product we are developing to provide
healthy alternatives to the way we eat today, " Greenlee said. "Our
products fit effortlessly into a healthy routine, giving consumers
great taste and convenience along with significant nutritional value.

The company creates healthy, tasty and affordable products to fit
consumers' busy lifestyles where unhealthy choices are abundant and
the need for healthier dietary choices is becoming increasingly
important.

"Now our growing customer base can get früsh in such great chains as
Lowe's Foods, Ingles Markets and BI-LO while we're creating jobs in
our community," Greenlee said. "At Origin, we are driven to
continuously dream, test and innovate."

About Origin Food Group, LLC

Origin Food Group prides itself on promoting healthy lifestyles by
creating wholesome alternatives for today's consumers while investing
in the Statesville region where the company is headquartered. A
partnership, the company combines 33 years of experience in yogurt and
beverages by the Alarcón family of Ecuador with the Stameys of Iredell
County, N.C.'s 60+ years in the dairy farming and cattle business.
Origin Food Group is the maker of früsh Yogurt & Fruit Shakes, a
superdrink made with real fruit, rich and creamy yogurt and all-
natural health boosters like HOWARU® Bifido probiotics and
TruCal®calcium. For additional information, visit www.originfoodgroup.com
and www.gofrush.com.

Military Families United Partners with The Art Institutes on New Scholarship Program

Military Families United, a national coalition of Gold Star and Blue
Star families, veterans and patriotic Americans, is proud to announce
it is joining forces with The Art Institutes to provide educational
support to the spouses of the men and women who wear the nation's
uniform.

The Art Institutes will offer four scholarships at $25,000 each
(equaling $100,000 total) per year to spouses of all Armed Forces
members including Active Duty, Active National Guard and Reserve, and
spouses of those killed in the line of duty post 9/11. Need-based
recipients are eligible for a one-time only award in the form of a
$25,000 tuition scholarship to study at one of The Art Institutes
schools, including The Art Institute of Charlotte, through the
Military Families United – The Art Institutes Program. Deadline for
entry is March 15, 2012. For more information on how to apply and
eligibility requirements, please visit
militaryspouses.artinstitutes.edu.

This combined effort with Military Families United creates greater
awareness of the service our men and women in uniform and their
spouses unselfishly render for us all.

"We are excited about this new opportunity because The Art Institutes
is a leader in delivering online and on ground educational
opportunities to students, and they believe, as we do, that providing
high-quality educational opportunities to members of our Armed Forces
and their families ensures a better future for our country," said
Robert Jackson, Executive Director of Military Families United.

The Art Institute of Charlotte has a proud tradition and strong record
of serving our nation's veterans and their families, and is uniquely
suited to serve the needs of members of our nation's military by
offering a broad array of educational programs that provide active
duty service members, reservists, veterans, military spouses and
families the quality, flexibility and convenience they seek.

"We appreciate the service these men and women give to our country and
we are dedicated to providing an education that will help them get
started on the path to a creative career," said Maurice Lee, president
of The Art Institute of Charlotte. "As members of the military, they
are helping to create a brighter tomorrow for the rest of us. At The
Art Institute of Charlotte, we want to help military personnel,
veterans and spouses create tomorrow in the next phase of their
careers."

To learn more about The Art Institutes schools visit www.artinstitutes.edu
.

"Our country witnessed the birth of its 'Greatest Generation' in large
part due to the education opportunities afforded military families
after the end of World War II. By providing better educational
opportunities to our current generation of veterans and their families
we ensure a better future for our country," Jackson said.

Military Families United (MFU) (http://
www.militaryfamiliesunited.org/) is a not-for-profit organization
whose mission is to "Honor the Fallen, Support Those Who Fight, and
Serve Their Families." The organization is a national coalition of
Gold Star and Blue Star families, veterans and others who share a deep
appreciation for our men and women in uniform. Founded in 2005, MFU
provides programs that offer families direct support.

The Art Institute of Charlotte is one of The Art Institutes (www.artinstitutes.edu
), a system of more than 45 educational institutions located
throughout North America. The Art Institutes schools provide an
important source for design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts
professionals. Several institutions included in The Art Institutes
system are campuses of South University. See aiprograms.info for
program duration, tuition, fees, and other costs, median debt, federal
salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

CMS Privatization Advisory Committee Recommends More Outsourcing

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education received the first report
from its Privatization Advisory Committee on Feb. 14, which
recommended that the district consider expanding some outsourcing of
custodial functions and explore outsourcing some functions of
information technology as well as privatizing payroll.

The Privatization Advisory Committee was created in April 2011 to
review ways the district could benefit from managed competition,
outsourcing and consolidation of services. The committee has nine
members, with each Board member appointing one, and has met nine times
since convening in August.

Five CMS service areas have given presentations to the committee:
custodial services, Child Nutrition, transportation, payroll and
information technology. Doug Bean, formerly director of Charlotte-
Mecklenburg Utilities Department and a key player during the city's
privatization effort in the 1990s, also met with the committee.

The committee recommended to the Board that outsourcing of custodial
services be expanded to cover all administrative sites. At present,
four administrative sites receive outsourced custodial services; the
committee recommends outsourcing for six new administrative sites
scheduled for use during 2012-2013. No CMS employees would be
affected. The staff estimates that it saves about $110,000 per year
for the four existing sites. The committee will evaluate expanding
outsourced custodial services at a pilot group of schools.

The committee also recommended to the Board that a Request for
Proposal (RFP) be issued for outsourcing payroll services, which would
likely result in a reduction of CMS payroll staff. The committee said
that an RFP would allow the district to learn the market cost of
payroll services.

The committee also recommended that exploration of outsourcing
information technology continue, saying it does not yet have
sufficient information to make a recommendation but believes there are
opportunities for outsourcing that could improve service and save money.

The committee is chaired by Robert E. Harrington. The other eight
members are Joan Belk, Sylvia Grier, Barry Hall, Michael Murdock,
Kathleen Rose-Bellot, Cassandra Tydings, Susan Walker and John White.

Spring Break Safety Tips Worth Following

Spring Break is a time when many college students like to cut loose
and forget about exams for a few days, but unfortunately, focusing too
much on fun and not enough on personal safety can have tragic
consequences.

To help college students stay safe while on Spring Break, Marcia Peot,
full time police officer and Chief Safety Officer at StreetSafe,
offers the following safety reminders:

• Don't let your guard down. Being on vacation is not an excuse to
throw caution to the wind and do something you wouldn't normally do or
put yourself in an unsafe situation.
• Research the place you are visiting before you go, especially if
it's a foreign country. Find out if there are dangerous areas you
should avoid, familiarize yourself with local laws and customs, and
know where to go and what to do in case of an emergency.
• Stay in groups or use the buddy system. You are more of a target
when you are by yourself.
• A stranger is still a stranger, even on vacation. Do not accept a
ride or go off somewhere alone with a person you don't know.
• Do not drink excessively. When you are intoxicated, your physical
reflexes, awareness of your surroundings, and ability to make
decisions become impaired, making you an easy target.
• Never leave your drink unattended and do not accept beverages from
anyone other than the bartender or waiter.
• The beaten path is the better path. Stick to populated and well-
lit areas, don't take short cuts, and familiarize yourself with the
area before heading out.
• Make sure your hotel room is locked at all times. Do not advertise
your room number, open the door for anyone you are not expecting, or
bring strangers back to your room.
• Upgrade your personal security. StreetSafe http://
www.streetsafe.com/ is a new mobile personal security system that
uses your smart phone's GPS technology to instantly connect to help
before a situation turns into an emergency. Street Safe's "Walk with
Me" service offers a live connection to a professional Safety Advisor
to keep you safe when walking in unfamiliar or threatening
surroundings and instant access to 911 if needed.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentines: Charlotte Area Couple Tells How They Work Together and Keep the Love

Pam and Jim Halpert from The Office make working together look like a
cinch. But in reality, working with your spouse is generally not so
simple. While many grapple with the question of whether spouses can
run a business together and still stay married, some local business
partners have reached the conclusion that despite being difficult at
times, this arrangement works for them and can be successful and
healthy for relationships. Here are their tips on how to utilize each
other's strengths and weaknesses while working and sleeping side-by-
side.

Divide and Conquer:

Mike and Catriona Harris started and run a public relations and social
media agency. After deciding to start a new company together, the two
picked up their lives in San Francisco to start a new chapter. The
husband and wife duo manage a household of two children under 5, full-
time positions with one company and expanding the new company together
while learning tricks and tips on how to stay sane along the way.
First and foremost, they advise couples planning on going into
business together to distribute the work and trust in the spouse's
ability.

"You can't be your spouse's boss and your spouse can't be your boss,"
Mike says. "I work on brining in new clients while Catriona focuses on
servicing them and managing the teams. While sometimes those blend
together, we both know our roles. You've got to be able to manage your
own thing."

Carve out time for individuality:

John and Diane Mahony (in photo) have been married over 12 years after
meeting through her sororities' functions at the University of Central
Florida. She acts as the CEO and he the COO of their national staffing
firm Kavaliro with offices in Charlotte. Through hard work and
dedication, the two have brought their local staffing agency from a
$1.5 million company in 2009 to a nearly $12 million national company
in 2011. With years of experience balancing home life and work life,
the two believe having outside, independent time is the key to a
successful, happy marriage and business.

"John sometimes has a hard time leaving work at the office," Diane
says, "but we have very open communication in our relationship and
when it becomes an issue, we talk about it and make a conscious effort
to spend more time as a couple rather than coworkers."

John adds, "We each have our own things that we like to do
individually. She plays tennis and enjoys spending time with her
friends, while I am a die-hard Bucs and UCF fan. I would recommend
working together as long as you have a strong commitment to keeping
work and home life separate."
Set Aside Business-Free Time:

"When you spend all day together, you don't need to go over your
workday nuances," Catriona says. "When I need an afternoon to myself
to go get a manicure or just be by myself, Mike takes the kids. If he
wants an afternoon to ride his bike, I make sure he has that time."

Both couples agree it's all about balancing. They advise partners
looking to go into business together to be flexible, courteous and
respectful.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Google Provides Free Websites for Mecklenburg County Businesses

Google is proud to announce North Carolina Get Your Business Online.
Google worked with local partners to design the program, which will
help drive economic growth by giving North Carolina businesses the
tools and resources to establish a website, find new customers, and
grow their business.

Get Your Business Online is an easy and fast way for North Carolina
businesses to get online. For the next year, participating North
Carolina businesses can go to http://www.americagetonline.com/north-carolina/
to get a free website as well as free tools, training and resources
to help their business succeed online. Google is partnering with
Intuit to provide its popular Intuit Websites offerings for free
including an easy-to-build website, a customized domain name and web-
hosting for one year. After the first year the website will cost $4.95
a month.

"The NC SBTDC is very excited to partner with Google to offer this
opportunity for North Carolina small businesses to develop a free
website and gain greater understanding of the importance of having
their business on the Internet," said Scott Daugherty, Executive
Director of the North Carolina Small Business and Technology
Development Center. "The expert training provided at the conference
will be beneficial to those small businesses that attend and help them
better understand the benefits and requirements to gain an effective
presence on the Web."

Small businesses need to be online because that's where their
customers are. While 97 percent of Americans look online for local
products and services, 69 percent of small businesses in North
Carolina do not have a website or online presence.

"The perception that getting online is complex, costly and time-
consuming has prevented many North Carolina small businesses from
taking the first step," said Scott Levitan, Director of Small Business
Engagement at Google. "This program makes it fast, easy and free for
businesses to get online."

Friday, February 10, 2012

Driver killed in accident on Johnston Road Friday morning

On 02/10/2012 at approximately 6:29 am, Alan Shuart was operating a
1997 Chevrolet Cavalier traveling South in the 15000 block of Johnston
Road. Tyler Lowe was operating a 2012 Scion Tc traveling West on
Providence Rd West. The traffic light was red for Providence Road
West traffic. According to witnesses, as Mr. Lowe approached the
light, he swerved around a vehicle that was stopped for the red light
and entered the intersection. After entering the intersection, Tyler
Lowe struck the Chevrolet Cavalier in the driver's side door. After
the initial collision, both vehicles continued until they came to a
final rest striking a guardrail on the Southwest corner of the
intersection.

Medic responded to the scene and pronounced Alan Shuart deceased at
6:39 am. Tyler Lowe was transported to Carolina's Medical Center with
serious injuries.

Alan Shuart's family has been notified of his death.

Tyler Lowe has been charged with Misdemeanor Death by Motor Vehicle.
Additional charges are pending.

Several witnesses to the crash remained at the scene and were
interviewed by the Police.

This crash is under investigation by the Major Crash Investigation
Unit of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department. Any witnesses
are being asked to call Detective Kevin Allred at (704) 336-8862.

Metro Fitness Club Adds Second Location

In the year and a half since Metro Fitness opened its doors in Myers
Park, we've realized the demand for top notch, custom designed,
results-driven personal and small group training programs. That's why
we're excited to announce the opening of our second location at 1610
East 4th Street in Baldwin Court. We're expanding on our efforts to
offer a unique training environment dedicated to personalized
instruction and customer service.

The Metro CrossFit and Training Center ("Metro 2") will be our 6,000
square foot CrossFit Box and Performance Training Facility. Slated to
open in April 2012, Metro 2 will offer a full complement of CrossFit,
specialized strength and conditioning classes, and personal training.
Similar to our Selwyn location ("Metro 1"), this facility will be
filled with energy, excitement, dedicated professionals, challenging
programs and fun!

In addition to providing CrossFit classes, Metro 1 will be launching
other programs including our most progressive new strength and
conditioning program: e3 Strength & Endurance Training. This newly
created and carefully crafted high intensity, interval based training
concept offers four distinct programs geared toward promoting muscular
strength and endurance, and enhancing metabolic conditioning.

Also new to Metro 1, cycling and rowing classes and an increased
number of CrossFit Endurance classes. We're also expanding our yoga
schedule and have a massage therapist on staff to provide ample
opportunity for active recovery of fatigued muscles.

Metro Fitness club co-owner Dar Malecki says, "Whether you are new to
fitness, an avid exercise enthusiast or a competitive athlete, we are
confident our thoughtful and comprehensive programming and services
will continue to provide clients with an unparalleled training
experience."

"We're thrilled to now offer this premiere standard of excellence in
the Elizabeth neighborhood as well as Myers Park," adds Metro Fitness
club co-owner Denise Abood.

The newest Metro Fitness Club will open on East 4th Street in April.
For more information on our clubs, visit www.metrofitnessclub.com or
call 704-365-6555. Tours, images and charter membership information is
available upon request.

Get updates and the inside scoop about Metro Fitness Club! Follow us
on Twitter at www.twitter.com/metrofitnessclt and become a Metro
Fitness Club "fan" on Facebook.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Ten innovative exhibitions: The Mint Museum announces upcoming shows for 2012

The Mint Museum announced a slate of 10 upcoming exhibitions for 2012,
beginning withSurrealism and Beyond (image by Kay Sage), which opens
to the public on February 11. With former U.S. Secretary of State
Madeleine Albright in attendance, the museum also announced that an
exhibition of her jewelry entitled Read My Pins: The Madeleine
Albright Collection will open June 30 and be on view during the
Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. And complementing trends
that are reverberating throughout popular culture, museum officials
detailed plans for the exhibition Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear, which
is scheduled to open March 3.

Following is a list of the announced exhibitions, with additional
details about Read My Pins and Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear attached.
More will be added to this list in coming months, so keep checking
back at mintmuseum.org for updates! (Note: This is a guide for the
media to use for planning purposes; descriptions of individual
exhibitions are always updated as they get closer to opening. Also,
please be aware when publishing information about upcoming exhibitions
to be clear to your readers/viewers/listeners about whether they are
appearing at Mint Museum UPTOWN or Mint Museum RANDOLPH. Thank you!)

Surrealism and Beyond
Mint Museum UPTOWN
11 February – 13 May 2012

This project brings together three groundbreaking exhibitions and
comprises the largest and most significant examination Surrealism and
Surrealist-inspired art ever presented in the Southeast.

Double Solitaire: The Surreal Worlds of Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy
explores the exchange of ideas that informed the work of the important
Surrealist artists Kay Sage (American, 1898-1963) and Yves Tanguy
(French/American, 1900-1955) during their 15-year relationship. It is
the first exhibition to examine Sage and Tanguy's work from this
perspective, the first significant exhibition of Tanguy's art
organized by an American museum since 1955, and the first major
gathering of Sage's paintings since 1977. Double Solitaire: The
Surreal Worlds of Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy is made possible through
support from The Mint Museum Auxiliary and awards from the National
Endowment for the Arts and the Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation.
Exhibition organized by The Mint Museum and Katonah Museum of Art.

Seeing the World Within: Charles Seliger in the 1940s focuses on the
remarkable paintings and drawings created by the American artist
Charles Seliger (1926-2009) during the first decade of his career. It
is made possible through support from The Mint Museum Auxiliary and
awards from the Terra Foundation for American Art and The Dedalus
Foundation, Inc. Exhibition organized by The Mint Museum.

Gordon Onslow Ford: Voyager and Visionary is the first retrospective
of the British-American Surrealist painter's work organized by an
American museum in more than 30 years. Featuring approximately 30
paintings by the artist, it is drawn entirely from his family's
collection. It is made possible through support from The Mint Museum
Auxiliary and organized by The Mint Museum.

For a complete news release about these exhibitions, visit
mintmuseum.org and click on "News/Press Releases."

Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear
Mint Museum UPTOWN
3 March – 8 July 2012

Fairytales, Fantasy, & Fear brings together the work of several
internationally acclaimed artists, including Mattia Biagi, Mark
Newport, Kako Ueda, Tom Price, and Kate Malone. Known for his work in
tar, Italian artist Biagi reinterprets icons of lost innocence, such
as Little Red Riding Hood and Cinderella's carriage. Newport, an
American fiber artist, creates hand-knit acrylic re-creations of
heroes' costumes, which combine their heroic, protective, and ultra-
masculine yet vulnerable personas. Ueda, a Japanese paper artist, uses
unsettling imagery, such as insects and skeletons, in her detailed
cutouts to represent the fine line between beauty and decay. Price, a
British furniture designer, is known for his use of polypropylene
tubing to create spiky shapes that evoke forms from the natural world.
And Malone, a British ceramic artist, is known for her sensual Neo-
Baroque forms and mastery of crystalline glazes.

This thematic exhibition, generously supported by the Mint Museum
Auxiliary, also includes selections from the Mint's permanent
collection and loans from private collections, and utilizes flat-
screen televisions for a one-of-a-kind experience. For a complete news
release about this exhibition, visit mintmuseum.org and click on "News/
Press Releases."

Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb Cohen
Mint Museum RANDOLPH
7 April 2012 – 6 January 2013

Organized as part of the Mint's celebration of its 75th anniversary,
this exhibition focuses on the ceramic creations of Herb Cohen, a
master potter and seminal figure in the museum's own history.
Sophisticated Surfaces: The Pottery of Herb Cohen brings together
approximately 60 works, including selections from the Mint's permanent
collection and loans from numerous private collections. Many of
Cohen's works feature intricate, abstract patterns carved into the
clay surface, along with innovative experimentations in glazing, which
harmoniously blend purity of form with sophisticated surface
decoration. Following the evolution of his seven-decade-long career as
an award-winning potter, this exhibition demonstrates in a variety of
forms that range from the functional to the sculptural the inimitable
skill and style for which Cohen has become known.

Born in Manhattan, Cohen first learned to throw on the potter's wheel
at the remarkably young age of 6, a craft he has continued to practice
throughout his life. After earning his MFA from the prestigious New
York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Cohen worked as a
designer for Hyalyn Porcelain Company in Hickory, N.C. He eventually
settled in Charlotte in the late 1950s, where he joined the staff of
The Mint Museum and served as its acting director from 1968 to 1969.
In the 1970s he moved to Blowing Rock, N.C. to establish his own
studio, but returned to Charlotte in 2010, where he remains active in
the local arts community.

The American Art Tile
Mint Museum RANDOLPH
7 April 2012 – 6 January 2013

The popularity of art tiles for embellishing American architectural
settings dates to the 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. For
the remainder of the nineteenth century, many middle-class and wealthy
consumers incorporated the latest fashions of art tiles in their
homes. Mass-produced tiles with refined details often featured famous
portraits or vignettes. By the turn of the century, trends shifted to
favor the handmade aesthetic of the Arts & Crafts Movement. American
art tile companies enjoyed success for about 50 years, until the Great
Depression and World War II forced many out of business.

The Mint Museum will present approximately 40 tiles from its permanent
collection in the American Decorative Arts Gallery, including the
permanently installed fireplace surround, Arkansas Traveler, modeled
and designed circa 1916 by Henry Chapman Mercer of Moravian Pottery &
Tile Works, Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

Heritage Gallery
Mint Museum RANDOLPH
Opens 12 May 2012

From its inception as the first art museum in North Carolina in 1936,
The Mint Museum has been an innovator and leader, a theme illustrated
in the inaugural installation of the Heritage Gallery at Mint Museum
Randolph.

It will feature works of art, archival documents, and photographs
documenting the growth and evolution of the museum, from its
beginnings as the original branch of the U.S. Mint to its founding as
an art museum to the present and beyond.

Matthew Weinstein
Mint Museum UPTOWN
28 April-18 August 2012

Matthew Weinstein, a visual artist currently living and working in
Brooklyn, N.Y., has achieved notoriety in the art world as the first
artist to focus exclusively on 3D animation. Beginning with a self-
written dialogue or lyrics, Weinstein uses musical scores and written
text to develop characters which he then renders by means of the
animation program MAYA. Weinstein then casts actors to vocalize the
dialogue, and musicians to create an auditory backdrop for the already
visually-developed environments. Using precision airbrush techniques
and single-hair paintbrushes, Weinstein also creates paintings,
essentially abstractions of his animated worlds. These paintings
accompany the digital installations and enable the artist to explore
the often-tenuous boundary between the real and the virtual in
contemporary culture.

The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra commissioned Weinstein to create a
digital accompaniment to debut with their performance of Maurice
Ravel's Bolero on May 4. The Mint Museum has organized a spotlight
exhibition of Weinstein's art, including four paintings and two
videos. Weinstein's Chariots of the Gods features a mechanized female
koi, voiced by Tony-award winning actress Natasha Richardson, who
dangles from a golden chain in an empty restaurant. While she seems
to carelessly meander through her environment with a smiling
disposition, she offers discourse on such weighty subjects as the
future, devolution, technology, aliens, and the impossibility of
progress. A second video, Cruising 1980, is an homage to writer-
director William Friedkin's iconic film "Cruising" (1980). This
exhibition is organized by The Mint Museum.

Read My Pins: The Madeleine Albright Collection
Mint Museum UPTOWN
30 June – 23 September 2012

During her career in public service, Madeleine Albright famously used
her jewelry to communicate diplomatic messages. Read My Pins: The
Madeleine Albright Collection reveals an intriguing story of American
history and foreign policy as told through Secretary Albright's
jeweled pins. The exhibition will be on display during the Democratic
National Convention, which will be in Charlotte September 3-6, 2012.

Organized by the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, the exhibition
features more than 200 pieces of jewelry. The collection that
Secretary Albright cultivated is distinctive and democratic —
sometimes demure and understated, sometimes outlandish and outspoken —
and spans more than a century of jewelry design and fascinating pieces
from across the globe. The works on view are chosen for their symbolic
value, and while some are fine antiques, many are costume jewelry.
Together the pieces in this expressive collection explore the power of
jewelry to communicate through a style and language of its own.

Through this traveling exhibition and the accompanying book "Read My
Pins: Stories from a Diplomat's Jewel Box" (2009), Secretary Albright
has given the world an opportunity to explore American history and
foreign policy through the lens of jewelry. For a complete news
release about this exhibition, visit mintmuseum.org and click on "News/
Press Releases."

Hard Truths: The Art of Thornton Dial
Mint Museum UPTOWN
30 June – 30 September 2012

Thornton Dial is a keen observer of the human spectacle and its
narratives of corruption and moral strength, folly and triumph. As an
artist, he has spent the last two decades exploring the truth of
American history and culture in all its complexities and
contradictions. This exhibition presents a major survey of Dial's
work, an epic gathering of over fifty large-scale paintings,
sculptures and wall assemblages that address the most compelling
issues of our time.

Born and raised in the rural South, Dial spent his childhood toiling
in the farm fields of western Alabama, followed by decades spent as a
laborer in the region's factories and heavy industry. A working-class
man whose art was weaned in the unheralded expressive practices of the
black vernacular South, Dial speaks in a voice long overlooked in the
canons of modern art and culture. Since his discovery in the late
1980s, critics have likened Dial's complex and tumultuous creations to
the renowned works of such artists as Jackson Pollock and Anselm Kiefer.

To create his art, Dial employs a vast universe of symbolically
charged materials — from plastic grave flowers, child's toys, bed
springs and carpet scraps to cow skulls and goat carcasses. Salvaged
from garbage cans and trash heaps, these items reappear in dense
accumulations amidst the artist's fields of dripped paint and
expressionistic brushworks.

Over the years, Dial has tackled a wide range of social and political
subjects in his art, from gripping commentaries on the homeless, the
abuse of the environment, and the failings of global capitalism to
haunting meditations on the War in Iraq, Hurricane Katrina, and the
tragedy of 9/11. Concerned with representing those otherwise rendered
invisible within the contours of history, he has also created many
works on the plight of women, labor, the rural poor, and the
impoverished underclass. Still other paintings and sculptures examine
the long history of racial oppression in America. Recounting the
atrocities of slavery and Southern sharecropping, the aspirations of
the Great Migration, the flight for Civil Rights, and other episodes
in black memory, these pieces form a powerful anthology on the human
struggle for freedom and equality.

Hard Truths: The Art of Thornton Dial is organized by the Indianapolis
Museum of Art.

Against the Grain: Wood in Contemporary Art and Craft
Mint Museum UPTOWN
1 September 2012 – 6 January 2013

This exhibition will examine woodworking in contemporary art across a
broad spectrum of practices and concepts. It will engage aspects of
art, craft, and design that have been characterized as "performative"
and critique the traditional art/craft/design divide. There will be
approximately 80 works in the exhibition including vessels, furniture,
sculptures, paintings, installations, and works by an international
roster of artists, crafts persons, and designers such as Alexandre
Arrechea, Martin Baas, Sandford Biggers, David Ellsworth, Hugo França,
Maria Elena Gonzalez, Robyn Horn, Donald Judd, Mel Kendrick, Silas
Kopf, Sherrie Levine, Mark Lindquist, George Nakashima, Sarah
Oppenheimer, Martin Puryear, Jean Shin, Bob Stocksdale, Alison
Elizabeth Taylor, and Richard Woods. Objects from the Mint's wood art
collection will be included.

This timely exhibition addresses a heavily debated topic in the field:
As the boundaries between art, craft, and design increasingly overlap,
should these categories be redefined, and if so, how? Against the
Grain uses the versatile medium of wood to address this issue,
highlighting several artists represented in The Mint Museum's
collection, such as Mark Lindquist and Robyn Horn, as well as several
that have been identified as artists to collect in the future,
including Hugo França and Matthias Pliessnig.

Against the Grain will debut at The Mint Museum during the Democratic
National Convention, followed by a presentation at Museum of Arts and
Design, New York, New York (February-May 2013). The exhibition is
organized by the Museum of Arts and Design.

The Weir Family, 1820-1920: Expanding the Traditions of American Art
Mint Museum UPTOWN
20 October 2012 – 20 February 2013

This is the first major exhibition to examine collectively the
paintings of the American artists Robert Walter Weir (1803-1889) and
his two sons, John Ferguson Weir (1841-1926) and Julian Alden Weir
(1851-1919). It traces the trajectory of American art across
the nineteenth century and into the twentieth, exploring the wide
range of styles in which Robert and his sons worked, as well as the
way in which their transatlantic encounters helped to shape their art.

Robert Weir was one of the first American artists to study in Italy,
working there from 1824-27. Upon his return to America, he became an
associate at the recently-founded National Academy in New York in 1829
and, a few years later, an instructor at the United States Military
Academy at West Point. He was renowned for his talent as a portraitist
and a history painter. Robert's first son John trained with his father
as well as in Europe. He then taught at Yale University for forty-four
years, establishing the first academic art program at a university in
this country. Early in his career, he painted history and genre
scenes, but was also an adept society portraitist. John's younger
brother, Julian, was educated at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris
from 1873-77. Although he initially expressed disdain for
Impressionism and worked in an academic style, he later embraced the
new movement and became one of the country's leading Impressionist
artists.

This exhibition was organized by the Brigham Young University Museum
of Art and supported in part by the Henry Luce Foundation and by an
award from the National Endowment for the Arts. It will bring together
between 60 and 70 paintings drawn from public and private collections,
and will be accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue. It opened at
the Brigham Young University Museum of Art and will travel to the New
Britain Museum of American Art before making its final stop in
Charlotte.

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

The Mint Museum is a non-profit, visual arts institution comprised of
two dynamic facilities: the newly opened Mint Museum Uptown and the
historic Mint Museum Randolph. As the oldest art museum in North
Carolina, The Mint Museum offers its visitors a remarkable opportunity
to experience art through two facilities that feature a global
collection spanning over 4,500 years of human creativity.

Located in what was the original branch of the United States Mint, the
Mint Museum Randolph opened in 1936 in Charlotte's Eastover
neighborhood as the first art museum in North Carolina. Today,
intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the art of the
ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, historic costume and
fashionable dress, European, African, and Asian art, among other
collections. Resources include a reference library with over 15,000
volumes, a theater featuring lectures and performances, and a Museum
Shop offering merchandise that complements both the permanent
collection and special exhibitions.

The Mint Museum Uptown houses the internationally renowned Mint Museum
of Craft + Design, as well as outstanding collections of American,
contemporary, and European art. Designed by Machado and Silvetti
Associates of Boston, the five-story, 145,000-square-foot facility
combines inspiring architecture with groundbreaking exhibitions to
provide visitors with unparalleled educational and cultural
experiences. Located in the heart of Charlotte's burgeoning center
city, the Mint Museum Uptown is an integral part of the Levine Center
for the Arts, a cultural campus that includes the Bechtler Museum of
Modern Art, the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and
Culture, the Knight Theater, and the Duke Energy Center. The Mint
Museum Uptown also features a range of visitor amenities, including
the 240-seat James B. Duke Auditorium, the Lewis Family Gallery, art
studios, a restaurant, and a museum shop. For more information, check
out mintmuseum.org.

Celebrate Charlotte's Great Night Out at EpiCentre Feb. 23

Charlotte residents will get the chance to experience 10 of the city's
most popular restaurants and entertainment destinations in one night,
all while supporting 10 local charities in the process as EpiCentre
presents Charlotte's Great Night Out Thursday, February 23 from 9 p.m.
until midnight.

As part of Charlotte's Great Night Out, wristbands will be sold in the
EpiCentre courtyard on February 23 for $10 apiece, with $1 from each
sale going to 10 different charities. The charities benefiting from
Charlotte's Greatest Night Out are Hospitality House of Charlotte, the
National MS Society, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, American Heart
Association, Dog Days of Charlotte, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Levine
Children's Hospital, Urban Ministries, Dale Jr. Foundation and Susan G
Komen for the Cure.

Wristbands will also grant attendees admittance to 10 participating
EpiCentre venues – BlackFinn, Enso, Howl at the Moon, Mez/Kazba,
Mortimers, StrikeCity, SUITE, Vida, Whisky River and Wild Wing Café.
Each location will offer specials in honor of Charlotte's Greatest
Night Out.

EpiCentre is the Southeast's hub for dining, entertainment,
recreation, nightlife and hospitality. Featuring an innovative design
and accommodating layout, EpiCentre is home to over three dozen unique
concepts encompassing over half a million square feet. The
restaurants, shops and nightspots at EpiCentre are perfectly situated
around an open air pavilion offering dramatic views of the Charlotte
skyline. Located at the intersection of Trade and College Streets,
EpiCentre is in the heart of vibrant uptown Charlotte, just blocks
away from prominent businesses and venues such as Bank of America
Corporate Center, Time Warner Cable Arena, Charlotte Convention Center
and the new NASCAR Hall of Fame and Museum. Best of all, EpiCentre is
easily accessible from anywhere, including a convenient stop on the
LYNX Blue Line.

Come Experience "Phantom of the Opera" in Union County

Taking on the biggest challenge in its history, the Union County
Performance Ensemble will present Andrew Lloyd Webber's "The Phantom
of the Opera." This is the ensemble's 13th annual performance and
students from all Union County high schools will be participating. The
show is produced through an exclusive arrangement with Rodgers and
Hammerstein Theatricals, Inc.

This project is supported by the Union County Community Arts Council (http://www.unionarts.org/
) and the Grassroots Program of the North Carolina Arts Council, a
state agency.

WHEN: Thursday-Saturday, February 16-18 at 7:30 p.m.; Sunday,
February 19 matinee at 2:30 p.m.
Thursday-Saturday, February 23-25 at 7:30 p.m.; Sunday, February 26
matinee at 2:30 p.m.

WHERE: Central Academy of Technology and Arts, 600 Brewer Drive (off
Highway 200), Monroe, NC 28112

TICKETS: Tickets are $6 for students and $10 for adults. Reserve
tickets by calling (704) 290-1599. Tickets will also be available at
the door.

Charlotte Realtors reports residential real estate activity up in January

Charlotte Regional Realtor® Association reports on the residential
real estate market in this region based on Carolina Multiple Listing
Services, Inc. (CMLS) data. The number of closings for January 2012
(1,541) increased 9.2 percent compared to January 2011, when closings
totaled 1,411. The average sales price in January 2012 ($187,785) was
somewhat flat, down -0.1 percent compared to the same period last year
($187,971). However, the median sales price ($146,550), the best
measure of trends over a period of time, showed prices up 2.4 percent
compared to January 2011, when the median sales price was $143,127.

The average list price in January 2012 ($254,168) increased 11.2
percent when compared to the average list price for the same period
last year($228,521), bringing the percent of original list price
received measure to 90.2 percent as compared to 88.2 percent last
January. January 2012 pending contracts totaled 1,777, an increase of
27.6 percent over last January's pending contracts (1,393) for the
CMLS region.

"We're encouraged by several positive factors that suggest the market
is continuing to improve and stabilize," said Jennifer Frontera,
association and CMLS president. "We appear to be moving in the right
direction with stats that show closings up, sales prices flat with
last year, a substantive increase in pending sales and the comparison
of sales price to original list price received reaching 90 percent."

New residential listings in January 2012 totaled 3,813, down 6.2
percent compared to the same period last year. Overall inventory
continued its downward trend, down 23.6 percent compared to January
2011, leaving the CMLS region with an 8.8 months supply of homes for
sale. The average number of days a property was on the market from
the time it was listed until it closed (list to close) totaled 155,
which is unchanged compared to the same period last year.

The share of new listings that were distressed in January was 13.7
percent as compared to 23.1 percent the previous year.

"Due to the number of foreclosure prevention programs available to
consumers, it is quite difficult to accurately predict the number of
distressed homes that will enter the market this year," said Frontera.
"The current trend in MLS reports shows less distressed properties
coming on market and an overall decrease in foreclosure inventory."

21.2 percent of all closed sales in January were distressed, compared
to 35.9 percent in January 2011.

For more residential-housing market statistics, visit the
association's website at www.CarolinaHome.com and click on "Community
Data." For an interview with 2012 association/CMLS President Jennifer
Frontera please contact Kim Walker.

The Charlotte Regional Realtor® Association is a trade association
that leads, educates and equips members to be productive. It provides
more than 6,600 Realtor® members with the resources and services
needed to conduct ethical, professional, successful and profitable
businesses. The association is dedicated to being the region's primary
resource for residential real estate information. The association
operates the Carolina Multiple Listing Services, Inc. (CMLS), which
has approximately 7,200 Subscribers and is the private cooperative
Realtors® use for access to tens of thousands of residential listings
in a 10-county service area, including the high-growth Charlotte area,
as well as listings outside this service area.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Davidson College invites public to sustainability celebration Feb. 13

Davidson College invites the public to join President Carol Quillen
and other college leaders at an event recognizing Davidson's
accomplishments in its efforts to achieve carbon neutrality.

The "Solar Celebration" is scheduled for Monday, Feb. 13, from 7 to 8
p.m. in the C. Shaw Smith 900 Room of the Alvarez College Union. There
is no charge to attend. For more information call 704-894-2388 or
email aldulin@davidson.edu.

President Quillen and David Holthouser, director of facilities, will
speak about Davidson's most recent sustainability initiative, the
installation of solar panels on the roof of the Baker Sports Complex.
Holthouser will describe the project and reflect on Davidson's past,
present and future efforts toward sustainability.

President Quillen will address the importance of sustainability, and
will re-sign the American Colleges and Universities Presidents'
Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) which was originally signed on Davidson
College's behalf in 2007 by former president Tom Ross. Quillen's
signature will also demonstrate the college's support of its own
Climate Action Plan, which is designed to achieve climate neutrality
by 2050.

Davidson is a highly selective independent liberal arts college for
1,900 students located 20 minutes north of Charlotte in Davidson, N.C.
Since its establishment in 1837 by Presbyterians, the college has
graduated 23 Rhodes Scholars and is consistently regarded as one of
the top liberal arts colleges in the country. Through The Davidson
Trust, the college became the first liberal arts institution in the
nation to replace loans with grants in all financial aid packages,
giving all students the opportunity to graduate debt-free. Davidson
competes in NCAA athletics at the Division I level, and a longstanding
Honor Code is central to student life at the college.

East Mecklenburg High School freshman to attend White House Science Fair

East Mecklenburg High School freshman Kayla Burriss will be among the
students from across the nation who will participate in the White
House Science Fair on Feb. 7. Burriss, who wants to be an
environmental engineer so that she "can make a difference in the
world," is part of her school's new Academy of Engineering, a small
school-within-a-school learning community that equips high school
students with the science and math skills to study engineering in
college.

East Mecklenburg's Academy of Engineering is one of nearly a dozen
career academies in high schools throughout the Charlotte-Mecklenburg
Schools system, which were created by the nonprofit National Academy
Foundation (NAF).

Students such as Burriss exemplify the "extraordinary accomplishments
made possible when students are exposed to high-quality, engaging and
hands-on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)
learning opportunities," said Linda Rosen, CEO of CTEq, a non-profit
organization dedicated to mobilizing the business community to improve
the quality of STEM learning in the United States. Seed funding for
the East Mecklenburg Academy of Engineering was made possible by the
AT&T Foundation, with additional support provided by other CTEq-member
companies Xerox, Verizon, and Motorola.

Burriss' mother, Michelle Paige, who is accompanying her daughter
said, "I have definitely seen a change in Kayla. She talks about her
engineering course and has begun to change her goals and is looking
toward the future. Kayla has increased confidence and excitement about
what she can do, and when she completes her goals she will be the
first one in her family to graduate from college."

One of the goals for East Mecklenburg's Academy of Engineering is to
increase the number of minority and female engineers, a shared goal of
the CTEq membership said Rosen. "A deliberate effort among the CTEq
coalition is to bring more high-quality STEM learning opportunities to
minorities and female students, both of whom are underrepresented in
STEM professions."

President Obama plans to deliver remarks during the Science Fair to an
audience of students, science educators and business leaders on the
importance of STEM education to the country's economic future.

The Feb. 7 event will be live streamed from 10:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.
(ET) on whitehouse.gov/live. Coverage will also be available on
Twitter (#WHScienceFair, and @whitehouseostp and @whitehouse).

Six things families need to know about the student-assignment lottery

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools online magnet student-assignment
lottery will close at 10 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 13. Here are a few tips
for families to keep in mind as they prepare to make their selections.

• Know the deadline
Families can submit applications from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., daily,
through Monday, Feb. 13.

• Know where to find the online application
Link to the application: http://www.cms.k12.nc.us/application/Pages/Login.aspx

Directions to the application: On the CMS homepage, click on the
2012-2013 Magnet/Student-Assignment Lottery link, which is located on
the left of the webpage.

The online application is available in both Spanish and English, and
CMS will provide free computer access at the Family Application Center
(700 Marsh Rd.) and at all zone offices through Feb. 13. Computers at
these locations will be available from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Families can
contact Student Placement for assistance from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at
980-343-5335. Spanish-speaking representatives are available.

• Make sure your child is enrolled as a current or future student
Students new to CMS in the 2012-2013 school year must have enrolled in
the system by Dec. 2 to be eligible for the first magnet lottery.
Students who enrolled after Dec. 2 will be eligible for the second
magnet lottery, which runs from March 14 to June 4.

• Have your student identification and PIN numbers readily available
CMS sent individual assignment notifications home with all current
students beginning the first week of January. This mailing included
each student's identification and PIN numbers, as well as directions
for online application to the magnet lottery. Students who are new to
CMS and students assigned to Title I Choice schools received the
information in the mail.

• Know your options
When you enter your student's information, the application will
automatically populate with the schools to which your student is
eligible to receive transportation. You will have the opportunity to
follow a link to see a list of more schools.

CMS will offer nine magnet programs at 37 schools (17 full-magnet
schools and 20 partial-magnet schools) for the 2012-2013 school year.
Magnet themes include International Baccalaureate; Military and Global
Leadership; Leadership and Global Studies; Montessori; Learning
Immersion/Talent Development; Science, Technology, Engineering and
Math (STEM); Traditional; Visual and Performing Arts and World
Languages. All CMS students are taught the North Carolina Standard
Course of Study. Magnet programs address students' special abilities
or talents.

• Reassignment notifications
Lottery assignment notifications letters will be sent to families in
late February. The letters give assignments through the lottery
process and provide information on how to ask for reassignment.


For more information on the CMS student assignment lottery, call
980-343-5030, email magnets@cms.k12.nc.us or visitwww.cms.k12.nc.us/
magnets.