Friday, April 27, 2012

The Revolve Tour to Feature New Artist of the Year Jamie Grace at Charlotte Event May 5

The Revolve Tour's Jamie Grace has been honored with the "New Artist
of the Year" award at the 43rd Annual GMA Dove Awards in Atlanta this
past week and will be at Charlotte, NC Revolve event on May 5.

"We are very gratified to be working with Jamie Grace and to see the
impact she has on the lives of teen girls across the country," said
Patrick Koors, Vice President of Marketing at Women of Faith, Inc.,
producers of The Revolve Tour. "We know her fans will be excited to
see her and celebrate her accomplishment at The Revolve Tour in
Charlotte."

The Revolve Tour understands what teens dream about—but also
understands that God's plan for their lives is bigger and better than
even they can imagine. The Dream On Tour is designed to inspire girls
to put their dreams in God's hands . . . Because as Luke 1:37 tells
us, "God can do anything."

The Charlotte event will feature Jenna Lucado Bishop, a passionate
speaker and author; KJ-52, rap/hip-hop artist who has won multiple
Dove awards; Harris III, award-winning, classically-trained, and world-
renowned master illusionist; Chad Eastham, teen culture expert through
Healthy Visions, a research agency for teens; Stellar Kart, positive,
hopeful pop/rock band, and Dove award winner Jamie Grace.

The Revolve Tour Dream On event will take place, Saturday, May 5 at
the Ovens Auditorium from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. For more information or to
register for the event call 877.973.8658 or go to http://revolvetour.com/events/charlotte/
.

The Revolve Tour was created in 2005 by Women of Faith as a one-of-a-
kind inspirational event for 6th–to 12th–grade girls. It combines
award-winning bands and speakers with real, relevant messages in a
high-energy event. Since it began, more than 430,500 have attended a
Revolve Tour event. For additional information, visit http://revolvetour.com
, Facebook or Twitter.

Charlotte Nonprofits Named Finalists in Toyota's 100 Cars for Good Program

Toyota has announced that two nonprofit organizations in Charlotte are
among the 500 finalists in 100 Cars for Good, a national philanthropic
program in which the automaker is giving away 100 vehicles to 100
nonprofits over the course of 100 days. Winners will be selected each
day by the public through voting on Facebook, beginning on Monday, May
14.

100 Cars for Good finalists come from all 50 states and the District
of Columbia. This year's finalists from Charlotte include:

· A Child's Place of Charlotte Inc.: Works to erase the impact
of homelessness on children and their education by providing
educational and emotional support services as well as medical
referrals to keep children healthy and in the classroom.

· Project Hope Consulting Inc.: Mentors and tutors children in
math, reading, science, computer technology and medicine.

A complete list of finalists is available at www.100carsforgood.com.

· See a short video about 100 Cars for Good
· Access the 100 Cars for Good logo and photos

This is the second consecutive year for Toyota's 100 Cars for Good,
which is the first Toyota initiative to enlist the public's help in
determining how the company's charitable contributions are awarded.
The 500 finalists, selected from an extremely competitive pool, were
certified by an independent panel of experts in philanthropy and
corporate social responsibility. The finalists include nonprofits
serving a broad range of community needs, including animal welfare,
arts, education, environment, health, veterans' affairs and safety.

"Toyota congratulates all of this year's finalists for 100 Cars for
Good in Charlotte," said Jim Lentz, President and Chief Executive
Officer of Toyota Motor Sales. "We are grateful for the enormous
impact that these nonprofits have each day and hope that 100 Cars for
Good will play an important role in raising awareness of their work
and helping these vital organizations make an even bigger difference
in Charlotte. We wish each of the finalists the best of luck and
thank all of the nonprofit groups from around the country that applied
to participate."

100 Cars for Good voting will begin May 14 and continue through August
21. Each day, five organizations will be profiled on Toyota's Facebook
page atwww.100carsforgood.com. Individuals will be able to vote once
each day for the nonprofit they think is most deserving of a new car.
The organization with the most votes at the end of the day will win
the vehicle. The four runners-up each day will receive a $1,000 grant
from Toyota.

Winning organizations can choose from the following vehicles: Camry
Hybrid, Highlander SUV, Prius v hybrid, Sienna minivan, Sienna
Mobility or Tundra full-sized pickup. A six-year, 100,000-mile
powertrain warranty will also be provided for each vehicle,
compliments of Toyota Financial Services.

Toyota will be providing all 500 finalists with a digital video
camera, training toolkit and free online advertising credits to
support their 100 Cars for Goodcampaigns and to help them create or
expand their presence in social media and other digital platforms.
Each finalist will be asked to create a video showing how the
organization plans to use a new vehicle to make an even bigger impact
in the local community. The videos will be featured at www.100carsforgood.com
.

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE: TM) established operations in the United States in 1957
and currently operates 10 manufacturing plants in eight states. Toyota
directly employs nearly 30,000 people in the U.S. and its investment
here is currently valued at more than $18 billion, including sales and
manufacturing operations, research and development, financial services
and design facilities. Toyota's annual purchasing of parts, materials,
goods and services from U.S. suppliers totals more than $23 billion.

Toyota is deeply committed to being a great community partner and is
focused on supporting programs in ways that achieve long-term
sustainable results. Toyota supports numerous organizations across the
country, with a particular concentration on education, the environment
and safety. Since 1991, Toyota has contributed more than half a
billion dollars to philanthropic programs across the U.S.

For more information on Toyota, please visit www.toyota.com/community.

About Toyota Financial Services (TFS)

TFS is the finance and insurance brand for Toyota and Lexus in the
U.S., offering retail auto financing and leasing through Toyota Motor
Credit Corporation (TMCC) and Toyota Lease Trust and extended service
contracts and other payment protection products through Toyota Motor
Insurance Services (TMIS). TFS employs 3,300 associates nationwide,
and has managed assets totaling more than $91 billion. It is part of a
worldwide network of comprehensive financial services offered by
Toyota Financial Services Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of
Toyota Motor Corporation.

Matthew Weinstein spotlight exhibition set to open April 28; artist, acclaimed author speak May 3

Fans of visual art, multimedia art, film, dance, and symphony will all
find something to love when The Mint Museum unveils the spotlight
exhibition Matthew Weinstein, featuring four paintings and a short
film by Brooklyn, N.Y.-based multimedia artist Matthew Weinstein.

The exhibition opens Saturday, April 28 and remains on view through
August 19. It runs concurrently with Colorbind: The Emily and Zach
Smith Collection, another spotlight exhibition paying tribute to
beloved local patrons of both the Mint and Charlotte Symphony, on view
April 28 through August 12.

Weinstein 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 Mint-organized exhibition includes Weinstein's short film Chariots
of the Gods, which 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.

"Matthew Weinstein's video invites the viewer to enter a mesmerizing
environment, which is entirely manufactured through computer
animation. His unique ability to combine his many talents as
screenwriter, director, and digital animator results in a video that
is visually stunning as the narrator lulls the viewer to follow her
epic tale," said Carla Hanzal, the Mint's curator of contemporary art.
"Weinstein's paintings, often inspired by the digital environments he
creates, are seamlessly rendered. Their refined surfaces and rich
detail coax one to take a closer look at the worlds he brings to
fruition."

On Thursday, May 3, 2012, Weinstein will participate in a special
dialogue with Robert Goolrick, acclaimed author of the novel A
Reliable Wife, at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts,
500 South Tryon Street. After a viewing of Weinstein's short film The
Childhood of Bertolt Brecht (recommended for ages 13 and up), the
artist and the author will discuss the importance and the role of
narrative in art. This event is a cultural partnership between The
Mint Museum and the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, which also
celebrates the Symphony's production of Bolero Comes Alive, featuring
digital animation by Weinstein. After the lecture at 6:30 p.m., the
museum will host a reception and opportunities to view both the
Weinstein and Colorbind exhibitions (other galleries will be closed
during the evening). The cost is $10 for Mint members and $20 for non-
members. And in a recently-adopted policy, all college students with
valid ID can be admitted free to this and all other lectures hosted by
the Mint.

Any non-members who attend can receive a $10 discount off a new Mint
membership. In addition, ticketholders to the Symphony's May 4 Bolero
Comes Alive performance can receive free admission and $10 off a new
Mint Membership from May 3 through May 6, and Mint members can receive
$10 off Bolero Comes Alive tickets by contacting the Charlotte
Symphony Box Office at 704-972-2000. This cultural partnership is
reminiscent of similar partnerships the Mint has joined in with Opera
Carolina and North Carolina Dance Theatre. In January, the Mint
unveiled a spotlight exhibition by artist Jun Kaneko, which remains on
view through April 29, in conjunction with a Kaneko-designed
production of the opera Madama Butterfly. And in March, the museum
offered free admission toSleeping Beauty ticketholders and Mint
members received a ticket purchase discount to NCDT's Sleeping Beauty
performance in conjunction with the museum's Fairytales, Fantasy, &
Fear exhibition, which remains on view through July 8.
"Exploring innovative ways to maximize opportunities for
Charlotte audiences through cultural partnerships continues to be a
core value of the Mint, and we're pleased to be able to further this
goal through the work of an artist as talented as Matthew Weinstein,"
said Dr. Kathleen V. Jameson, president & CEO of The Mint Museum. "As
we have said before, thanks to this deepening spirit of collaboration,
there's never been a more exciting time to be a follower of the arts
in Charlotte."

Symphony premieres Bolero Comes Alive


At Bolero Comes Alive, a KnightSounds performance on May 4, the
Charlotte Symphony will feature the world premiere of Weinstein's
latest digitally animated work of art. Weinstein's commissioned piece
is a 16-minute original animated video to be displayed on a screen
suspended above the orchestra. The audience will experience the
brilliant animation in sync with the hypnotic music of Ravel's Bolero.


This is the first commissioned work under the leadership of Music
Director Christopher Warren-Green. It will be performed during the
Symphony's new multi-sensory KnightSounds series, which is funded by
the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and is becoming part of a
new national model for the modern concert-going experience.

Warren-Green will lead the Charlotte Symphony in this exciting venture
that represents a marriage of classical music, digital art, and modern
dance. In order to make his non-human characters live on screen and
appeal to a human audience, Weinstein works with actors, dancers and
choreographers to capture human movement which he then applies to his
animations. For this piece, he worked closely with a choreographer to
translate his ideas into a modern dance.

"The application of digital animation to the frequently performed and
well known Bolero exposes aspects of the work in a way that an aural
performance alone cannot," said Charlotte Symphony President and
Executive Director Jonathan Martin.

Commissioning a piece of multimedia artwork is representative of the
forward-thinking vision of the orchestra. As the commissioning agency,
the Charlotte Symphony aims to give the work a continued existence in
the orchestra world beyond the premiere. The Charlotte Symphony will
license the work to other orchestras to help offset the cost of the
commission. A post-concert street festival will follow the May 4
performance, featuring local food vendors, artisans and continued
entertainment from the high-octane PROJECT Trio.

Since its inception in 2010, the KnightSounds series has been met with
full houses and critical success. A tenet of the KnightSounds mission,
multimedia is used to enhance and intensify the musical experience.
The concerts are one hour in length and include a beverage and hors
d'oeuvres in the ticket price, along with engaging pre- and post-
concert activities.

Event list:

Saturday, April 28: Spotlight exhibitions Matthew Weinstein and
Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection go on public view at
Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon
Street.

Thursday, May 3: 6:30 p.m. Matthew Weinstein and author Robert
Goolrick community discussion and reception at Mint Museum Uptown.
Visitwww.mintmuseum.org for more information and to RSVP (required;
hit "calendar"). $10 Mint members and Bolero Comes Alive ticket
holders; $20 non-members; free to college students.

Friday, May 4: 5 p.m. Free admission to Mint Museum Uptown begins for
all concert ticket holders, continuing through Sunday, May 6.
6:30 p.m. Pre-concert reception with Dean &
Deluca hors d'oeuvres at the Knight Theater at Levine Center for the
Arts, 430 South Tryon Street.
7:30 p.m. Charlotte Symphony KnightSounds
concert premieres Weinstein work. Tickets to the KnightSounds
performance and premiere are $39, available at 704.972.2000 or www.charlottesymphony.org
.
8:30 p.m. Post-concert street festival
outside the Knight Theater featuring vendors, artists and musical
entertainment.

New college student ticket policy

While The Mint Museum frequently has offered free or discounted
admission to college students to lectures and other special events,
museum officials recently decided to officially open all lectures to
college students with a valid student ID. This includes the May 3
Weinstein/Goolrick event and the Mint's Contemporary Architecture +
Design (CAD) series, bringing a lecture from influential graphic
designer Stefan Sagmeister at 7 p.m. on May 24 (cost is $5 to Mint
members and $10 to non-members).
This admission policy reflects the museum's recently adopted
mission statement which includes "engaging and inspiring all members
of our global community."
"A major initiative of The Mint Museum is to create innovative
and engaging public programs relevant to our various communities — and
one of our large communities is college and university students," said
Laura Everett, adult programs coordinator for the Mint. "The Mint
Museum's programming consistently features nationally and
internationally renowned experts — offering students perspectives on
the world which will only enrich their education."
For more information on these and other upcoming events, visit
mintmuseum.org and click "Calendar."

Charlotte Symphony
Founded in 1932, the Charlotte Symphony aspires to serve the whole
community through classical music that educates, entertains and
enriches. The orchestra's recently launched New American Orchestra
Campaign will provide the financial stability for the Symphony to
build a renewed and sustainable funding model. A non-traditional
venture, the New American Orchestra Campaign seeks to address the
immediate nature of the need through community-wide operating support.
Through education, innovation and relentless passion, the Charlotte
Symphony has served the community for 80 years and is a vital
organization that fervently believes in the artistic enrichment of the
human spirit.

Christopher Warren-Green
Music Director of the Charlotte Symphony and London Chamber
orchestras, Christopher Warren-Green has formed an international
career that has included appearances with the London Philharmonic,
Philadelphia Orchestra and Principal Conductor of the Camerata
Resident Orchestra of the Megaron Athens.Warren-Green has been
personally invited to conduct on many occasions for the Royal Family
in the last thirty years. In April 2011, Warren-Green conducted the
London Chamber Orchestra during the marriage ceremony of HRH Prince
William Duke of Cambridge and HRH Duchess of Cambridge at Westminster
Abbey, which was televised to millions worldwide. Warren-Green is a
regular on television and radio, and in summer 2008, he featured on
the BBC's high-profile television series 'Maestro'. He has recorded
extensively for Sony, Philips, Virgin EMI, Chandos and Deutsche
Grammophon.

John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality
journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster
the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people
and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit
KnightFoundation.org.

Levine Center for the Arts and Knight Theatre
The Levine Center for the Arts is one of Charlotte's key cultural
destinations, comprised of Bechtler Museum of Modern Arts, Harvey B.
Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture, John S. and James L.
Knight Theater and Mint Museum Uptown. The center was made possible
through the Campaign for Cultural Facilities, the support of the City
of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, and the generosity of the Leon
Levine Foundation, one of the country's largest and most impactful
philanthropic organizations. Opened in 2010, the Knight Theater's
contemporary, flexible design of 1,150 seats provides for artistic
grandeur in an intimate setting. The theater is the primary venue for
the North Carolina Dance Theatre, and features performances by Opera
Carolina and the Charlotte Symphony, as well as musical theater,
popular music, touring productions, lectures and film.

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
one of the largest collections in the Southeast, 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 state's first art museum. Today, in a beautiful
park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the
art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion,
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.

Young Affiliates of the Mint to host Derby Days May 5

The Young Affiliates of the Mint (YAM), a group of diverse young
professionals who promote and support The Mint Museum through social,
educational, leadership, and fundraising activities, will host the
annual Derby Days event on Saturday, May 5 from 4 to 8 p.m. on the
lawn of Mint Museum Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road.

Named the "Best Party for Young Socials" by SouthPark Magazine, Derby
Days brings together more than 300 of Charlotte's young professionals
to enjoy a day of live entertainment, lawn games, complimentary food
and beverages, a silent auction, and a large-screen viewing of the
Kentucky Derby, dubbed "The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports."

Tickets can be purchased through the YAM web site, www.derbydayscharlotte.com
. Prices start at $38 for YAM members and $48 for non-members. Those
who wish to attend must purchase their tickets in advance. No tickets
will be sold at the door.

After Derby Days, the party will continue at Andrew Blair's, 1600
Montford Drive. The sponsor of this year's Derby Days after-party,
Andrew Blair's features a large patio area for young professionals to
dine and socialize.
From July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2012, the Young Affiliates are
focusing on Project FundaMINTal. Project FundaMINTal is our campaign
to raise $20,000 that will help support the Mint's Annual Fund. The
Mint's Annual Fund addresses the most critical needs of the museum.

For more information about the 2012 Derby Days, visit www.derbydayscharlotte.com
.

ABOUT YOUNG AFFILIATES OF THE MINT

The Young Affiliates of the Mint is a group of diverse young
professionals who promote and support The Mint Museum through social,
educational, leadership and fundraising activities. Founded in 1990,
the Young Affiliates is the premier social arts organization for young
professionals in the Charlotte area. For more information about the
Young Affiliates of the Mint, visit www.youngaffiliates.org. The Mint
Museum is funded, in part, with operating support from the Arts &
Science Council of Charlotte-Mecklenburg, Inc.; the North Carolina
Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources; the
City of Charlotte; and its members.

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
one of the largest collections in the Southeast, 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 state's first art museum. Today, in a beautiful
park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the
art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion,
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.

Create a Summer of Possibilities at The Art Institute of Charlotte's Summer Studio

This summer, instead of building campfires, why not build on your
creative potential at Summer Studio? Not your typical summer camp,
Summer Studio puts students in a hands-on, collaborative environment,
where they learn new skills in the fields of design, culinary, media
arts or fashion.

This five - day summer program at The Art Institute of Charlotte is
open to high school juniors and seniors and offers workshops in
Design, Media Arts, Fashion Marketing, and Culinary Arts. Under the
guidance of industry-savvy instructors, students will complete an
awesome final project and have get the opportunity to see if a
creative college like the one at The Art Institute of Charlotte is
right for them.

"Summer Studio provides students the opportunity to grow as creative
individuals, interact with like-minded peers and get a taste of what
the college experience will be like," said Maurice Lee, president of
The Art Institute of Charlotte.

Summer Studio at The Art Institute of Charlotte runs June 17-21, 2012.
To enroll or for more information, visit www.summerstudio.com/
Charlotte or contact Debbie Herndon at (704) 357 - 5901 or dherndon@aii.edu
. All workshops are non-credit bearing, and do not transfer into any
of the programs offered at The Art Institute of Charlotte.

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.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Senior Centers 6th Annual Golf Classic Planned for June 18

The 2012 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Senior Centers (CMSC) Golf Classic will
take place on Monday, June 18th at Pine Island Country Club. Proceeds
from the event will help CMSC meet their commitment to continue to
provide quality programs and services to more than 4,000 older adults
each year at their four locations in Mecklenburg County.

Registration and Breakfast begins at 8:00 a.m., a shot gun start at
9:00 a.m. and an awards luncheon following play. Entry fees are $100
per person if received on or before May 1st, and $125 per person after
May 1st. Entry fees include; cart and green fees, use of locker room,
practice facility & range balls, breakfast and lunch, awards and
prizes, special drawing, and on-course contests. Corporate
sponsorships opportunities are available.

Since its founding in 1983 as a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization,
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Senior Centers, a United Way Agency, has
provided a wide range of assistance and services to older adults in
this community. CMSC exists to enrich and empower older adults in the
Charlotte region through varied programs and services to meet their
needs. CMSC provides multiple programs and services to older adults
from four locations:

· The headquarters building at 2225 Tyvola Road

· The Senior Center on Shamrock located near the Aldersgate
community at 3925 Willard Farrow Drive

· The Bette Rae Thomas Recreation Center in the West part of
Charlotte

· The North Mecklenburg Senior Center (formerly in Cornelius)
now in Huntersville

Examples of CMSC programs that are making a positive difference in the
lives of Charlotte/Mecklenburg seniors include:

• Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP): recruits and places
volunteers

• Senior Employment Program: job counseling, training, and placement
• Senior Nutrition program: provides low-cost meals to seniors daily
• Multicultural program: outreach to Latin American, Chinese,
Russian, and Asian immigrants
• Education: computer classes, lectures, drama and arts, and English
and Spanish classes
• Health and Wellness: exercise classes, fitness suite, health
screenings and workshops
For more information, contact CMSC at 704-522-6222, or visit its web
site at www.cmcharlotteseniorcenters.org.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Mass Affluent Americans Push Back Retirement Date and Take Steps to Get on Track in Greater Numbers

Fifty-seven percent of working mass affluent Americans expect to
retire later than they planned a year ago, according to the latest
Merrill Edge Report. This shows a 36 percent increase from January
2011. The report, released today by Bank of America, is a semi-annual
quantitative and qualitative study of the financial concerns and
priorities of the mass affluent (consumers with $50,000-$250,000 in
investable assets).
"While the economy is showing signs of a turnaround, our data
indicates the outlook among the mass affluent is not quite as
positive," says Dean Athanasia, Preferred and Small Business executive
at Bank of America. "In spite of their increased efforts to get on
track, this group is pushing back their retirement in greater numbers
than we've seen before."

Balancing short- and long-term finances

Balancing their short- and long-term finances continues to be one of
the greatest challenges for the mass affluent. The data shows an
increase among those who admit to tapping into their long-term savings
or investments to meet short-term financial needs (34 percent) than
previously seen in November 2011 (27 percent). Additional findings
include:


• Long-term finances pose greatest concern: The greatest financial
concerns among the mass affluent revolve around long-term issues,
including the rising cost of health care (89 percent), ensuring
retirement assets last throughout their lifetime (83 percent), and
being able to afford the lifestyle they want in retirement (80 percent).
• Issues take precedence over candidate: While the mass affluent are
concerned with the upcoming presidential election (71 percent), they
show greater concern with the issues, such as health care legislation
(80 percent), the future of Social Security benefits (77 percent) and
the U.S. government's budget deficit (77 percent).
• Parents paying more for child's education: Fifty-six percent of
mass affluent parents have paid or expect to pay more to send their
first child to college than they had expected when the child was first
born. When asked why, those who currently have a child in college or
that has graduated, 64 percent say the college or university was more
expensive, while 32 percent want to keep their child out of debt.
• Focusing on financial management: The mass affluent plan to focus
on financial management tasks in the next six months more so than seen
in the Fall Merrill Edge Report, such as: budgeting (85 percent), up
from 67 percent in November; balancing short- and long-term finances
(71 percent), up from 55 percent; and saving for retirement (68
percent), up from 49 percent. In addition to these efforts, 77 percent
of respondents note mobile banking has helped improve how well they
manage their finances.

As one qualitative respondent acknowledges, "I just created a monthly
budget, so I will be focusing on that in the next six months as a way
to avoid overspending. Hopefully, I will be able to start putting away
some money in savings again."

Making sacrifices to get on track

As getting back on track is a high priority for mass affluent
Americans, many are willing to make short-term sacrifices in order to
get their finances in better shape. Some of the methods this group
will utilize in order to meet financial obligations include cutting
back on entertainment and personal luxuries (61 percent), trimming day-
to-day expenses (56 percent) and keeping the same car longer than
they'd like to (49 percent).

"The mass affluent are taking more steps now than we saw just six
months ago to improve their finances, but balancing their budget for
today and saving for retirement continues to be their number one
struggle," says Alok Prasad, Merrill Edge executive at Bank of
America. "We're heartened to see so many in this group making
additional strides, like cutting back on unnecessary purchases and
taking on more DIY projects, to make those goals a reality. For most,
starting the process is the hardest part, and this group has taken
that first, crucial step."

In addition, signaling a commitment to their savings efforts, 70
percent of mass affluent Americans say they took on home improvement
projects in the last year, such as plumbing, painting, and home
cleaning, that they would normally hire someone else to do. Younger
members of the mass affluent were more likely to embark on these home
improvement projects than their older counterparts, as 84 percent of
18- to 34-year-olds took on a project, compared to 77 percent of 35-
to 50-year-olds, 70 percent of 51- to 64-year-olds and 60 percent of
those 65 and older.

Generation Y proves to be "Generation Worry"

Mass affluent aged 18-34 are much more worried about their financial
future than older generations, but are less likely to take as many
steps to get back on track. Interestingly, however, this group is also
most likely to manage their investments on their own (63 percent).

"The Merrill Edge Report shows that there are significant differences
between the generations, with Gen Y particularly concerned with their
financial future," said Athanasia. "For Gen Y, this is their first
investing experience, and the downturned economy has had a significant
impact on their outlook and approach to risk. The data shows that Gen
Y is proving to be 'Generation Worry' and we'll see these concerns
take their toll as they approach other life milestones like paying for
college and retirement."

While the long-term poses the greatest concern for the mass affluent
overall, Gen Y is worried about both the long- and the short-term
equally. Seventy-nine percent of Gen Yers express apprehension about
caring for an aging parent or adult child compared to 49 percent
overall. In the short-term, 92 percent of younger mass affluent say
financially supporting their family is a concern in contrast to 61
percent overall.

The data also indicates this age group is most likely to tap into
their long-term savings to pay for short-term expenses (41 percent).
Yet, they are also less willing to make changes to meet their
financial goals such as cutting back on entertainment and personal
luxuries (57 percent) and keeping the same car longer (48 percent). As
a result, 71 percent of Gen Y already expects to retire later than
planned--a stark difference from those aged 35-50 (59 percent) and
51-64 (60 percent).

For a complete, in-depth look at the mass affluent, read the entire
Merrill Edge Report. Additional topics covered in the report include
the level of financial responsibility mass affluent parents take for
their adult children, paying for college and weddings, lifestyle trade-
offs made to save money, important financial lessons they teach their
children, and whether they believe their children will achieve greater
financial success.

Merrill Edge Report Methodology

Ketchum Global Research & Analytics and Braun Research conducted the
Bank of America Merrill Edge Report survey by phone between Feb. 13
and Feb. 29, 2012 on behalf of Bank of America. Braun contacted a
nationally representative sample of 1,000 Americans in the United
States with investable assets between $50,000 and $249,999, and
oversampled 300 mass affluent in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The
margin of error is +/- 3.1 percent for the national sample and +/- 5.7
percent for the oversample markets, with both reported at a 95 percent
confidence level.

To help inform the Merrill Edge Report, Communispace conducted a
series of qualitative studies including interactive conversations,
surveys, and other dynamic and exploratory activities with its
proprietary online community of 300 mass affluent consumers.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions,
serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and
large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset
management and other financial and risk management products and
services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United
States, serving approximately 57 million consumer and small business
relationships with approximately 5,700 retail banking offices and
approximately 17,250 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 30
million active users. Bank of America is among the world's leading
wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and
investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes,
serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around
the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to
approximately 4 million small business owners through a suite of
innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company
serves customers through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of
America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones
Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Free Speech Activities Planned During DNC in Charlotte

Today the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County clarified plans for
respecting and accommodating citizens' and visitors' First Amendment
right to free speech and peaceable assembly during the Democratic
National Convention (DNC) scheduled September 4-6, 2012.

The US Supreme Court has characterized public streets, sidewalks, and
parks as "traditional public forum." The use of traditional public
forum property is not, however, free from all government regulation.
Specifically, reasonable time, place, and manner regulations may be
applied so long as they are content-neutral, narrowly tailored to
serve a significant governmental interest, and leave reasonable
alternative avenues of communication. For example, one does not have a
constitutional right to march through the intersection of Trade and
Tryon Streets during the Monday morning rush hour. Instead, the City
may restrict such a demonstration to other times or locations that are
not disruptive to the necessary flow of rush hour traffic.

Under current City ordinances, individuals and groups may demonstrate
on City sidewalks at any time anywhere within the City, without a
permit. Except on sidewalks that may be closed for security,
transportation, or logistical reasons, individuals and groups will be
allowed to demonstrate on City sidewalks during the DNC, as they are
today, without a permit. Similarly, County parks will be available for
individuals and groups to demonstrate during the DNC without a permit.
These properties will not be subject to reservation by anyone,
including the DNC Committee and Host Committee; instead, they will be
open to anyone and everyone, for peaceable assembly and expressive
activity.

With regard to parades and marches in the streets, and consistent with
the practice in previous convention cities, the City will establish a
parade route during the DNC. The City will also establish a "speakers'
platform," a location where City-provided microphones and
amplification equipment will be provided to individuals and groups
wishing to express their opinions. The City is developing an online
application process for time slots for parades and access to the
speakers' platform. A random lottery will be used to allocate times.
The online application process as well as parade route and speakers'
platform locations will be announced in early June and accessible at
DNCinfo.charlottenc.gov. Applications will be taken for one month and
the lottery will be held in early-July.

Again, it is important to note that the parade route and speakers'
platform are not the only locations where individuals and groups may
exercise their First Amendment rights. Sidewalks and parks, unless
closed for security or logistical reasons, will be open and available
to everyone for expressive activity.

The City and County have two goals: (1) to respect and protect the
First Amendment rights of our citizens and visitors; and (2) to
preserve the peace, provide public safety, and ensure an enjoyable
convention experience for all.

Mint Museum announces four new exhibitions

The Mint Museum has added four new exhibitions to its lineup for 2012,
beginning with one opening this month that pays tribute to two
treasured patrons of the local arts community, Emily and Zach Smith.

Colorbind: The Emily and Zach Smith Collection will be on view at Mint
Museum Uptown from April 28 through August 12, and runs concurrently
with the previously-announced multimedia Matthew Weinstein spotlight
exhibition on view April 28-August 19. Colorbind consists of nearly
two dozen paintings, lithographs, etchings, and drawings collected by
the Smiths.

"Colorbind offers our visitors the opportunity to experience a
selection of works by some of the most important modern and
contemporary artists of the 20th and 21st centuries," said Brad
Thomas, the Mint's curator of contemporary art. "More importantly, it
offers an intimate glimpse into a private collection that informs and
enlivens the everyday lives of Emily and Zach Smith, two of our
region's most important cultural supporters. We are extremely grateful
to the Smiths for making this work available for display at the Mint
for the benefit of our community."

For over three decades, the Smiths have tirelessly dedicated
themselves to improving the cultural infrastructure of this region.
Through their patronage and extensive service on various boards
including the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, The Mint Museum, Opera
Carolina, and Penland School of Crafts, to name a few, their community
investment has touched the lives of countless individuals.

This intimate display of works illuminates a decidedly more personal
side of the couple's relationship to art. One small landscape painting
on view by North Carolina artist Claude Howell (1915 ­- 1997) was
selected jointly even before their marriage. It was an auspicious
beginning for lives that would be bound by a devotion to family,
community, and the arts.

As for their own personal taste in visual art, the Smiths confess a
shared love of color. Works by Pop artists Jasper Johns, Robert
Rauschenberg, and Wayne Thiebaud play alongside geometric abstractions
by Peter Halley, Sol Lewitt, and Sean Scully –– vibrant color binding
each creative voice into the collectors' unified vision. This
exhibition is organized by The Mint Museum.

"Colorbind and the other three exhibitions we are announcing today
further the Mint's role of serving the increasingly global community
of Charlotte and beyond," said Dr. Kathleen V. Jameson, President &
CEO of the Mint. "From celebrating treasured local art collectors in
the Smiths to tapping the unparalleled scope of our Fashion Collection
to showcasing the unique and diverse viewpoints of renowned artists
Vik Muniz and Beverly McIver, the Mint offers depth and range that is
unmatched."

Both Colorbind and Matthew Weinstein will be celebrated at a special
event at 6:30 p.m. May 3 at Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for
the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street. Weinstein, a multimedia artist, will
appear with Robert Goolrick, acclaimed author of A Reliable Wife.
After a viewing of Weinstein's short film "The Childhood of Bertolt
Brecht," the artist and the author will discuss the importance of the
role of narrative in art. The event costs $10 for Mint members; $20
for non-members; free to students with valid ID; and includes a
reception immediately following. Pre-registration is required; visit
mintmuseum.org and click "Calendar."

And the Bead Goes On

26 May 2012 – 17 February 2013

Mint Museum Randolph

May brings the opening of the next exciting exhibition from the Mint's
nationally-renowned collection of fashion. The Mint has recently
renamed its Historic Costume & Fashionable Dress collection the
Fashion Collection.

And the Bead Goes On pays tribute to a form of ornamentation that has
been used to enliven fashion designs since ancient times. Originally
restricted to the wardrobes of aristocrats and made of precious
materials, beads indicated wealth and status in numerous cultures
throughout the globe. Sometimes beadwork was employed on garments to
convey rank, spiritual significance, or protection of the wearer.
Colorful and sparkling beads appeared on articles of clothing,
ceremonial dress, ritual masks, and everyday objects.

And the Bead Goes On features 20th- and 21st-century women's fashions,
which display inventive beadwork embroidery. This seemingly modern
surface decoration, the variety of bead materials and shapes, and the
basic sewing techniques used to embellish the works on view were
developed in Paris workshops in the 18th century. Talented designers
and skillful artisans collaborate to achieve dazzling fashions that
are comfortable and durable. Glass beads, metallic sequins, metal
filigree beads, faux pearls, and faceted crystal rhinestones hand-sewn
onto the cloth impart beauty, opulence, and artful originality.

Fashion was democratized in the 1960s, and previously exclusive beaded
style became available to all. The fashion industry today, while still
centered in Paris, includes major designers from India, Lebanon, and
Nigeria, and elsewhere. And the Bead Goes On presents evening gowns,
cocktail dresses, and ensembles from the museum's Fashion Collection,
complemented with exciting new works on loan from contemporary
designers. Designer names featured in the exhibition include Halston,
Bob Mackie, Giorgio Armani, Oscar de la Renta, and Alber Elbaz for
Lanvin.

This exhibition, organized by The Mint Museum, will open at Mint
Museum Randolph concurrently with the previously-announced Heritage
Gallery, a look through the Mint's 75-year history as the oldest art
museum in North Carolina.

VantagePoint X: Vik Muniz

25 August – 4 November 2012

Mint Museum Uptown

Although Vik Muniz was born into poverty in Rio de Janeiro in 1961, he
has arguably become the most famous contemporary Brazilian artist. His
conceptual photographs are exhibited internationally, and he is
represented in significant museum collections throughout the world.
Beginning his art career in the mid-1980s after relocating to the
U.S., Muniz established a studio in Brooklyn, where he creates large
photographs that mimic recognizable images borrowed from the media or
historical paintings.

Muniz's recreations of famous paintings are notable for their uncanny
attention to detail and the non-traditional nature of the media he
chooses. Muniz painstakingly gathers such discarded objects as tires,
bolts, coils of wire, broken appliances, and soda cans, arranging them
on a warehouse floor in piles and layers to create representations of
iconic paintings by historical artists. After this labor-intensive
process is complete, Muniz photographs the massive creation from a
balcony above, thereby preserving the final appearance before the
image is disassembled.

Collectively, Muniz's photographs bring to mind ideas of ecology,
impermanence, and mortality. Muniz's photographs, which intentionally
incorporate discarded materials, implicate the viewer in a
consumerist, transitory culture. His photographs fuse two important
strands of postmodern photography—staging and appropriation. Staging,
which is the creation of an image through choreographing all visual
components of the photograph; and appropriation, which is borrowing
imagery from a source of reference, in this case historically
significant paintings from the Western tradition. The resulting
photographs are both fascinating and disarming, and probe the function
and traditions of visual representation. This exhibition is organized
by The Mint Museum.

Reflections: Portraits by Beverly McIver

20 October 2012 – 6 January 2013

Mint Museum Uptown

McIver, a native of North Carolina, is renowned for her expression-
filled, emotive canvases that commemorate her life and the lives of
those closest to her — in particular, her mother, Ethel, who passed
away in 2004, and her sister, Renee, who is mentally disabled. The
exhibition celebrates the last decade of her work and highlights these
two subjects, focusing solely on her self-portraits and on portraits
of Renee and other family members.

McIver is widely acknowledged as a significant presence in
contemporary American art, examining racial, gender, and social
identities through the lens of her own experiences as an African
American female artist. The history of her family allows McIver to
contemplate and illustrate the complicated emotions that arise from
these situations, including depression, frustration, tender
compassion, and innocent joy.

Accompanied by an exhibition catalogue, Reflections includes numerous
loans from the artist, private collections, and select museums.
Organized by the North Carolina Museum of Art, this exhibition is made
possible, in part, by the North Carolina Department of Cultural
Resources; the North Carolina Museum of Art Foundation, Inc.; and the
William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment for Educational Exhibitions.

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
one of the largest collections in the Southeast, 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 state's first art museum. Today, in a beautiful
park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the
art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion,
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.

Early Voting for May 8 Primary Election Now Under Way

Early voting is under way in Mecklenburg County for the May 8 Primary
Election. The primary location for early voting is the first floor of
the Hal Marshall Annex at 618 North College St. and additional
locations will open April 30.

Dates and times for Hall Marshall are as follows:
April 19 – April 27 (Weekdays) 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
April 30 – May 4 (Weekdays) 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM
May 5 (Saturday) 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Dates, times and additional Locations:
Beatties Ford Road Library 2412 Beatties Ford Rd., Charlotte
Cornelius Town Hall 21445 Catawba Ave., Cornelius
Hayes Building (Ballantyne) 11405 N. Community House Rd., Charlotte
Independence Regional Library 6000 Conference Dr., Charlotte
Main Branch Library (Downtown) 310 N. Tryon St., Charlotte
Marion Diehl Rec. Center 2219 Tyvola Rd., Charlotte
Matthews Branch Library 230 Matthews Station St., Matthews
Morrison Regional Library 7015 Morrison Blvd., Charlotte
Mountain Island Library 4420 Hoyt Galvin Way, Charlotte
North County Regional Library 16500 Holly Crest Ln., Huntersville
South County Regional Library 5801 Rea Rd., Charlotte
Steele Creek Library 13620 Steele Creek Rd., Charlotte
University City Regional Library 301 E. W.T. Harris Blvd., Charlotte
West Boulevard Library 2157 West Blvd., Charlotte

Hours of Operation:
April 30 – May 4 (Weekdays) 11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
May 5 (Saturday) 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM (Final Day)

Important: There will be NO Early Voting at the Board of Elections
Office. For directions and further election related information visit
the Board of Elections web site.

Mint Museum Shops offer great gifts for Mother's Day and Father's Day

Hunting for a memorable gift for Mother's Day or Father's Day this
year is easy – just stop at one of the two convenient locations of the
Mint Museum Shops for some gorgeous finds: at Mint Museum Uptown at
Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon Street, or at Mint Museum
Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road.

"Shoppers may sometimes forget how many one-of-a-kind gifts are
available at the Mint Museum Shops, and how convenient the two shop
locations are for Charlotteans," said Sandy Fisher, Museum Shops
Manager. "Shoppers can have the double reward of purchasing gifts
their loved ones will appreciate and supporting a treasured cultural
institution."

Here are some of Fisher's recommendations for this season's finds.
High-res images of all items are available, and Fisher is available
for interviews on request.

For Mom:

Hamilton Williams – Berry Bowl: Nestled in the foothills of the
western North Carolina town of Valdese, Hamilton Williams creates a
wide range of functional stoneware pieces. The Berry Bowl has been
one of his most popular pieces for both its usability and beauty of
design. ($48)

Kathleen Horner – Dogwood flower pins: Horner began as a water color
artist in 1980, but her love of flowers and concern for the
environment inspired her to start her Flower Sculptures business.
Each flower is sculpted and hand painted with acrylics on extra-heavy
watercolor paper (and for an added touch, remind Mom that the dogwood
is the state flower of North Carolina!). ($22)

African Paper Beaded Bracelets: These colorful bracelets are made in
Uganda by BeadforLife, a nonprofit organization providing women an
opportunity to lift their families out of poverty by making these
wonderful bracelets out of recycled paper. ($8.50)

For Dad (all items available at Mint Museum Uptown only):

Bryan Parks - Chopstick Bowls: In 2000, Bryan was traveling in China
and over lunch started to think about the huge number of disposable
chopsticks. After collecting chopsticks he began to use them to make
larger items, and that's how Chopstick Art was born. Bowls fold for
easy storage. ($14.50 to $30)

Davin & Kesler –business card holders and letter openers: Thomas Davin
and Mary Kesler have been woodworking together since 1979. They work
out of a 19th century mill overlooking Dorset Mill Pond in Exeter,
Rhode Island. ($39.95 to $42)

Steve Noogle – bowls: Noogle received a degree in forestry from
Louisiana State University in 1978 and after working as a timber
cruiser in the Pacific Northwest, he returned to North Carolina to
work in the furniture industry. This led him to find pieces of wood to
make his handsome bowls on his family farm in Burke County. ($110 and
up)

Perry Holbrook – boxes: Holbrook is educated as an engineer, but
"downsized" to become a full-time craftsman in 2002. Each piece is
hand carved or turned on a lathe and then finished with a colorful
glass tile on the lid. ($58 to $85)

Items can be browsed at www.mintmuseum.org/shop and phone orders can
be placed by calling 704.337.2061.

ABOUT THE MINT MUSEUM

As the oldest art museum in North Carolina, and the art museum with
one of the largest collections in the Southeast, 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 state's first art museum. Today, in a beautiful
park setting, intimate galleries invite visitors to engage with the
art of the ancient Americas, ceramics and decorative arts, fashion,
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.

Orvis Announces Spring 2012 Free Fly Fishing Clinics

From May through July, Orvis will offer free fly fishing lessons
nationwide through Orvis retail stores (including Charlotte) and
participating dealers (www.orvis.com/ff101). This season Orvis hopes
to introduce even more outdoor lovers to the sport with Fly Fishing
101 and 201 beginning in May 2012. Classes are complimentary to the
public and a great way for families and friends to enjoy the outdoors
together.

"The past two years' success of Fly Fishing 101 is truly amazing and
encouraging," explains Tom Rosenbauer, Marketing Director of The Orvis
Company. "Based on the success of the program, we've been delighted to
welcome many thousands of novice and advancing students to the joys of
fly fishing through Fly Fishing 101 and 201. Our goal is to encourage
people of all ages and backgrounds to come learn more about the
fascination of fly fishing. The classes are unique opportunities to
enjoy a new sport and the success of the program speaks volumes to
what folks are seeking in terms of healthy outdoor recreational
activities for themselves and their families."

Trout Unlimited and the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) will be
lending their support again this year with volunteers at the event and
free memberships to their organization for attendees of the class.

Fly Fishing 101/201 Highlights -- The 101 course will consist of two
parts—one hour of casting instruction and one hour of rigging. Most
participants are true beginners so keeping the focus on learning these
basic skills is the best place to start. FF201 classes are conducted
on the water, with a lower instructor/student ratio. The main thrust
of the 201 course is getting those interested in taking the next step
in fly fishing on the water at a local location where they have a
great chance at catching their first fish. Private water, local bass/
bluegill ponds, or a recently stocked river or creek are typical class
sites.

Once instruction is completed, each group attendee will receive a $25
coupon off any purchase of $50 or more and other coupons good toward
Orvis gear. Additionally, each group attendee will receive a
certificate for a FREE Trout Unlimited membership and a FREE
membership to the Federation of Fly Fishers—a $70 value. The total
free package value including the instruction is valued at over $150.

To get started in fly fishing and to make it more accessible to start
in the sport, participants will also receive discounted offers on a
fishing lanyard with tools and a beginner's rod outfit—all the basics
needed to hit the water after the class.

Contact your local Orvis store for details.

Foster Care Symposium at Johnson C. Smith University April 27

Johnson C. Smith University will present a one-day symposium "Phasing
Up to New Possibilities" Supporting Youth through Higher Education on
April 27 at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church in Charlotte. The
event will take place from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The annual symposium is
for public and private agency staff involved with foster youth,
universities, students, church leaders, public officials, businesses
and community members interested inpromoting independence, self-
sufficiency and educational advancement for youth "aging out" of the
foster care system.

Sponsors for the event include Johnson C. Smith University, the
Department of Social Work and the Mecklenburg County Department of
Social Services. Special workshops will feature John Emerson, Casey
Family Programs; Heidi McIntosh, U.S. Dept. of Health and Human
Services; Eileen McCaffrey, Foster 2 Success; Sonyia Richardson,
Another Level Consulting; Derrick Anderson, Foresight Leadership
Training; JJ McEachern, Central Piedmont Community College; Brennon
Graham, The Relatives; Family Finding and the Children's Home Society.

"The purpose of this event is to educate, problem solve and forge
partnerships in our community that will support youth, who have aged
out of the foster care system or experienced similar life
circumstances and desire a college education" said Pat Newell,
Director of Johnson C. Smith University's Foster Care Initiative (in
photo). The university is forming a Foster Village Network Center to
provide opportunities for young men and women who have aged out of the
foster care system. It is designed to help them pursue their
entrepreneurial ambitions and the possibilities available through
continued education. Further details may be found atwww.jcsu.edu/
phasingup.

Founded in 1867, Johnson C. Smith University is the premier
independent urban liberal arts university located in the heart of
Charlotte, N.C. It offers a progressive liberal arts curriculum with
26 fields of study to more than 1,600 students. The University
prepares students for success through excellent academic programs with
a focus on servant leadership, civic engagement and global
responsibility.

Meck County's 2012 State of the Environment Report Goes Live

How's the air out there? Is the water getting better? Are we recycling
as much as we could be? The verdict on all of the above, according to
a new online resource unveiled by Mecklenburg County this week, is
mixed, but encouraging.
The 2012 Mecklenburg County State of the Environment Report (SOER) --
which assesses the County's progress in air, water, land, and waste
management – is now online at http://charmeck.org/mecklenburg/county/LUESA/soer/Pages/default.aspx

The semiannual report takes an honest, comprehensive look at what we
have accomplished environmentally since 1987. The bad news is the air
we breathe in could still be better, surface water quality remains
partially impaired, and our recycling rate has room for improvement.

But there is some good news. In many areas, we're headed in the right
direction. The environmental quality of life in Mecklenburg County has
improved steadily as community programs are implemented and residents
become more informed and take an active role in reducing their
environmental footprint

For the first time, the State of the Environment Report is available
online as a dynamic website that will be updated as new data becomes
available. Videos that explore different aspects of our local
environment have been added as well.

"Mecklenburg County has opportunities for residents to become a part
of the decision-making process and reduce negative environmental
impact," said Heidi Pruess, environmental policy administrator for
Mecklenburg County. "The State of the Environment Report is a tool for
understanding our environmental condition while identifying strategies
for ensuring that we have clean air to breathe, clean water to drink,
and healthy land on which to live and recreate."

The 2012 SOER encourages each resident to become a part of helping to
make Mecklenburg County a Sustainable Community by:

• Describing Mecklenburg County's current environmental status for
the public and the Board of County Commissioners
• Highlighting the major environmental issues facing us
• Recommending direction and opportunities for involvement concerning
those issues
• Giving the County objective measures to evaluate progress toward a
clean, healthy environment.

A 2010 survey shows that 49 percent of respondents believe that
protecting the environment is best accomplished at the local level,
significantly more than at the state and federal level. The population
in our region continues to increase, so the time is now to get
involved and improve our environmental quality of life, becoming a
Sustainable Community.

Local Alzheimer's advocates head to DC to appeal to Congress

Six Charlotte area residents will participate in the Alzheimer's
Association Advocacy Forum in Washington, D.C., April 23-25. Greg and
Laura Mercer, Dr. Bryan Connell, Dr. Jon McKinsey, William Scurry and
Teresa Hoover along with other advocates from across North Carolina,
will join hundreds of people with the disease, caregivers and family
members from across the nation to engage in the democratic process and
directly appeal to their members of Congress about Alzheimer's disease.

The Advocacy Forum will include a keynote address from Health and
Human Services Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, a candlelight tribute
rally, educational sessions and updates on research and legislative
efforts. The event culminates when the advocates descend on Capitol
Hill to meet directly with legislators.

Alzheimer's advocates were vital to the passage of the National
Alzheimer's Project Act (NAPA) and will now be asking members of
Congress to support an aggressive National Alzheimer's Plan that
accelerates and prioritizes government efforts on Alzheimer's
necessary to change the trajectory of the disease. Today an estimated
5.4 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's - a progressive and
fatal neurodegenerative disease that has no way to prevent, cure or
even slow its progression; and by mid-century as many as 16 million
people will have Alzheimer's.

In North Carolina alone, nearly 170,000 residents have Alzheimer's and
as many as 415,521 friends and family members manage the significant
emotional, physical and financial challenges of caregiving for their
loved ones.

Because Alzheimer's simply can't wait, it is crucial for lawmakers to
address the Alzheimer's crisis with the same commitment they
demonstrated in the legislation's historic passage. Greg and Laura
Mercer hope to represent all of the families that have been impacted
by Alzheimer's as Laura was diagnosed in 2008 at age 48 with young-
onset Alzheimer's.

"I'm one of millions of people in the United States affected by
Alzheimer's disease," said Laura Mercer. "This disease doesn't just
happen to individuals; its ripple effects are felt throughout entire
families and communities. I am going to Capitol Hill to tell lawmakers
the Alzheimer's epidemic must be meaningfully addressed by government
and a strong national strategy would signal their recognition of this
fact."

While the human toll is significant, the Alzheimer's Association 2012
Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report also revealed the costs
to the nation to care for individuals with Alzheimer's or other
dementias are staggering as well. In the United States, care costs
will total an estimated $200 billion this year, including $140 billion
paid by Medicare and Medicaid and these costs are projected to soar to
$1.1 trillion in 2050.

For more information on how you can advocate visit www.alz.org/advocacy.

Alzheimer's Association
The Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health
organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. Our mission is
to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research;
to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to
reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Our
vision is a world without Alzheimer's. For more information, visit
alz.org or call our 24-Hour Helpline at 800-272-3900.

Frenzel Properties Holds Benefit Concert for A Child's Place on May 11

Frenzel Properties, a boutique residential real estate firm serving
the greater Charlotte area, is holding a benefit concert with country
and bluegrass band Simpler Times to support A Child's Place, a local
nonprofit that is helping to erase the impact of homelessness on
children and their education. The concert will be held at Andrew
Blair's (1600 Montford Drive, Charlotte, NC 28209) on Friday, May 11
from 7:30 – 10:00 p.m. The concert is $10 per person with 100 percent
of the admission going to A Child's Place's My Place summer day camp
program for rising first through fifth grade students. In addition to
financial support, Frenzel Properties will also be collecting new
towels, flip flops and goggles for the 150 campers' swim lessons.

Frenzel Properties has partnered with A Child's Place for the past two
years and donates a portion of all home sale commissions to help the
nonprofit, currently helping over 3,200 homeless children in the
Charlotte area. The firm also sponsors a homeless family at Christmas
through A Child's Place.

"A Child's Place does wonderful, heartwarming work in our community
providing stability for kids and their families that don't have a
home," said Kelly Frenzel, owner and broker for Frenzel Properties.
"Sadly, in our current economy, the number of homeless families has
increased, creating an even greater need for help. Our firm wants to
make a positive impact not only in our clients' lives, but in the
community as a whole and we are blessed to help support A Child's
Place's My Place summer day camp program, which provides homeless
children with a safe, fun and educational environment for the summer."

About A Child's Place's My Place Summer Day Camp
A Child's Place's (ACP) My Place summer day camp is an eight week
opportunity for rising first through fifth grade students. When the
academic year comes to a close, homeless children lose the structure
and food school provides. My Place summer day camp provides these
students with a safe, fun and educational environment for the summer.
My Place allows these children to take a break from the familial and
situational hardships they must deal with on a daily basis to be
children, enjoy the summer, and understand the importance of academic
success. For more information, visit www.AChildsPlace.org.

About Frenzel Properties
Frenzel Properties is a full-service residential real estate brokerage
firm that strives to provide exceptional representation for buyers and
sellers. More than just access to the local MLS, the firm adds value
by managing the complete buying or selling process, assisting in due
diligence, ensuring the right lifestyle fit and a thorough analysis of
each property's value. Frenzel Properties is located in Dilworth at
700 East Boulevard, Suite 2, Charlotte, NC 28203. For more
information about Frenzel Properties or to view property listings,
please visit www.FrenzelProperties.com or call (704) 560-0117.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

CMS Board of Education extends offer to Morrison

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education has preliminarily
selected Dr. Heath Morrison from three finalists for the
superintendency. Contract negotiations are currently under way and
once complete, the Board will vote at a regular meeting to officially
approve the hire of Dr. Morrison and his contract.

Dr. Morrison is presently superintendent of schools in Washoe County
(Reno), Nevada. He began his career in Maryland, working in Charles
and Montgomery counties as a teacher and administrator, before taking
the Reno job in 2009. He, CMS administrator Ann Clark and Memphis City
Schools leader Dr. Kriner Cash were the finalists for the CMS job.

"We had three very talented individuals in the list of finalists. All
of them had unique strengths and areas of expertise," said Ericka
Ellis-Stewart, chair of the Board of Education. "But we believe that
Dr. Morrison is the right leader for CMS now. He brings energy and
experience to the many challenges facing our district, as well as a
strong commitment to excellence and achievement."

The Board will formally vote on Dr. Morrison's selection at its
regularly scheduled meeting April 24.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Outcroppings Trail to Chimney Rock Reopens April 14

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park, one of the Southeast's most
iconic and popular outdoor travel destinations, is scheduled to reopen
the Outcroppings trail on Saturday, April 14. The rebuilt trail
offers new stunning views of the Park, increased capacity and improved
comfort with more places to rest.

The reopening of the Outcroppings trail, which leads from the upper
parking lot to the Chimney stairs, permanently restores hiking access
to the Chimney, the Opera Box, Devil's Head and Skyline trail to
Exclamation Point, the highest point in the Park. The modernized
elevator and Sky Lounge Gift Shop & Deli are expected to reopen
sometime later this spring. Discounted admission rates as of April 14
will be $12/adult, $5/youth (ages 6-15) and free for kids under 6.

"NC State Parks is thrilled to see months of planning and years of
guest commitment carry this project from a vision into a tremendous
reality. The dedication of our construction teams, park staff and our
community support has made this exciting project a true success and we
are pleased to be able to reveal this incredible new feature here at
Chimney Rock State Park," said Adrienne Wallace, Park Superintendent,
Chimney Rock State Park.

"The rebuilt Outcroppings trail offers new perspectives for our
guests. It's like upgrading from a mountaintop gravel road to the Blue
Ridge Parkway. It's an easier, more enjoyable trek for the family with
new stunning views of Chimney Rock and the Gorge," said Mary Jaeger-
Gale, General Manager, Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park.

Awesome Views, Spacious Trail. Upgrading the Outcroppings trail
preserves access to the Park's iconic centerpiece for generations
while improving the guest experience. Landings are placed every 12
vertical feet of climb to facilitate rest stops, and the new six-foot-
wide stairways, which increase capacity, have a gentler incline to
make it physically easier for guests to hike to the Chimney.

A Construction Marvel. Four helicopter airlift missions were conducted
to transport tens of thousands of pounds of steel, wood, construction
materials and equipment to the trail construction site. The airlifts
saved an estimated 6-8 weeks of construction time on the project,
which began in December 2011. Dangling from a 250-foot rope attached
to the helicopter, large steel columns were carefully threaded between
large trees and lowered into new concrete footings with a precision
down to inches. The ex-military pilot of Pirate Airlift from Atlanta
stated this project was the "most challenging job in 21 years of
business." The general contractor for the trail reconstruction, Taylor
& Murphy Construction Co. of Asheville, engineered pulley systems to
transport heavy materials up the mountain.

Elevator Modernization. Originally opened in 1949, the Park's 26-story
elevator is nearing its completion in late spring on an extensive
modernization project. Almost every part including the original
elevator car is being upgraded or replaced. Construction on the
adjacent metal evacuation stairs is complete. The Sky Lounge Gift Shop
& Deli has been renovated to make its restrooms wheelchair accessible,
and it will offer improved retail and food selections. It is expected
to reopen simultaneously with the elevator at an unscheduled date.

Restrooms Renovation. Renovation of the Park restrooms on the Meadows
and top parking lot to make them wheelchair accessible is nearing
completion, and they are expected to reopen later this month. New
sustainable fixtures include waterless urinals, low-flow toilets, low-
flow faucets with automatic shutoff and automated hand dryers. New
sinks and partitions also have been installed. The elaborate interior
paintings by Park muralist Clive Haynes will be preserved.

Outcroppings Trail Reconstruction by the Numbers:

§ Total # of Stairs to the Chimney: 491

§ Stairs Rebuilt for Winter 2012 Project: 348 steps; 203 feet of
elevation change; 517 feet in length

§ Lbs. of Steel: 82,900

§ Lbs. of Wood: 58,600

§ Bolts & Screws: 16,000

§ Man Hours Worked: 8,800

§ Construction Workers: 14

Friends of Chimney Rock State Park. Want to help the Park create more
outdoor recreational opportunities? Join the Friends of Chimney Rock
State Park by visiting theirFacebook page or downloading a membership
application.

About Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park
Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park is a developing international
outdoor attraction located 25 miles southeast of Asheville on Highway
64/74A in Chimney Rock, N.C. It has been recognized as one of the
Southeast's most iconic and popular travel destinations for more than
100 years. In 2012, the Park is celebrating the 20-year anniversary of
the release of The Last of the Mohicans, which was filmed in Chimney
Rock. The Park's 535-million-year-old monolith called Chimney Rock
offers guests 75-mile panoramic views of Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake
Lure. The Park features one of the highest waterfalls of its kind east
of the Mississippi River, Hickory Nut Falls, at 404 feet. A
destination for travel groups, weddings and special events, the Park
also hosts innovative educational programs for schools, homeschoolers,
scouts and summer camps. Visit Chimney Rock's website at
chimneyrockpark.com. More information on current Capital Improvement
projects at chimneyrockpark.com/progress or by calling 800-277-9611.

Oaklawn Language Academy PTSA Gives back to the Charlotte

With today's economy, homelessness is at an all-time high and the PTSA
at Oaklawn Language Academy is joining the fight against
homelessness. Oaklawn Walks for Life is about improving lives, not
only in helping to make someone's life better but also teaching the
students at Oaklawn a life lesson about caring for others.

Students, parent, neighbors, and the community of Charlotte will
participate in a 3k walk/run. The walk-run will begin at 9 am on
April 14, 2012. Register by April 10, 2012 and receive a discount.
Early registration is $15.00. Register the day of the event at 1810
Oaklawn Ave, Charlotte NC 28216 from 8-8:45. Late registration is
$20.00. Part of the proceeds will benefit the Men's Shelter of
Charlotte.

Information about Oaklawn Language Academy:

Our staff, parents and the community are united in our commitment to
raise 21st century global citizens. Our vision statement concentrates
on developing an excellent dual language immersion program to promote
bilingual, biliterate and bicultural 21st century learners. Oaklawn
Language Academy is currently a full magnet program offering language
immersion education in Spanish for grades K - 6. Language immersion
education uses a foreign language as the medium of instruction for the
standard course of study. Research confirms the benefits of language
immersion education go beyond acquiring a foreign language to improve
skills in math and science in higher grades. Native speakers from
throughout the world staff our newly renovated building, located near
Uptown Charlotte.

Information about Men's Shelter of Charlotte:

The mission of the Men's Shelter of Charlotte (MSC) is to be
dedicated to providing safe emergency shelter while working to end
homelessness for each man. For 30 years MSC has ensured that homeless
men have access to shelter while also providing them with meals,
showers, clothing, and other basic necessities. The key to their
success going forward is helping homeless men obtain and maintain both
income and housing. Many of the men they serve are disabled,
veterans, or elderly. For others, however, employment income provides
the path to self-sufficiency, yet they have barriers that make finding
jobs on their own difficult. MSC is working hard to provide better
access to all income avenues for the men we serve. Without some form
of income, housing is impossible. It costs less than $20 per day to
shelter and provide supportive services for one man. The shelter
serves approximately 585 men per night. For additional information
visit their website at: www.mensshelterofcharlotte.org

Come out and support Oaklawn Language Academy's PTSA efforts to
improve the lives of homeless men and the students of Oaklawn.

To donate or become a sponsor please, contact Michelle Delury or Ann
Waller at 980-343-0400.

Register or donate at Oaklawn Language Academys website: http://schools.cms.k12.nc.us/oaklawnMS/Pages/SpecialEvents.aspx

Also, drop off the registration form and entry fee at Oaklawn Language
Academy, 1810 Oaklawn Ave. Charlotte NC 28216.

Ann Caulkins and Gerald Johnson to speak at Johnson C. Smith University April 18th

Ann Caulkins, president and publisher of the Charlotte Observer and
Gerald Johnson, CEO and publisher of The Charlotte Post, will discuss
how the media influence elections and campaigns during a free public
lecture at 7 p.m. on April 18 at Biddle Hall on the Johnson C. Smith
University campus. The event is part of the university's Lyceum Series
"Democracy 2012: The Road to Charlotte."

Caulkins has worked at the Charlotte Observer since 2006. She was the
first woman president of The State newspaper in Columbia, S.C. and
publisher for three years.

Johnson is CEO and Publisher of The Charlotte Post Publishing Company,
Inc. and Chairman of Consolidated Media Group. He is also president of
the Charlotte Post Foundation and a member of the American Leadership
Forum.

Founded in 1867, Johnson C. Smith University is the premier
independent urban liberal arts university located in the heart of
Charlotte, N.C. It offers a progressive liberal arts curriculum with
26 fields of study to more than 1,600 students. The University
prepares students for success through excellent academic programs with
a focus on servant leadership, civic engagement and global
responsibility.

Premier Festivals Announce Summer Music Festivals in Charlotte and Myrtle Beach

Premier Festivals is pleased to announce the summer lineup of
festivals featuring some of the biggest acts in Christian and Gospel
music set in family-fun locations from the beach to amusement parks.
Festivals include Beach Blast, JoyFest, Rock the Park, Wonder Jam,
KingsFest, SpiritSong, HeartFest, and PointFest.

The 2012 festival season kicks off in May with Beach Blast in Myrtle
Beach, S.C. Fans have the opportunity to experience the live music
from all their favorite artists. Tickets are on sale now for the
festivals.

Date
Festival Location
May 19, 2012 Beach
Blast Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
May 26, 2012
JoyFest Charlotte, North Carolina
June 16, 2012 Rock the
Park Charlotte, North Carolina

To purchase tickets, please visit http://www.premierfestivals.com/all_events.php
. Early bird specials are available for some events.

Beach Blast takes place in downtown Myrtle Beach, S.C. featuring
tobyMac, Third Day, RED, Royal Tailor, Jamie Grace, along with emcee
KJ52 and speaker Nick Hall. Also, the freestyle stunt team Outcast BMX
will be performing.

JoyFest makes stops in Charlotte, N.C. at Carowinds – "Thrill Capital
of the Southeast" - amusement and water park and Doswell, Va. at Kings
Dominion – "Virginia's Premier Themed Amusement Park" the state's only
combination water and ride park. Artists on the lineup for one or both
stops include Fred Hammond, Mary Mary, Marvin Sapp, Lecrae, Martha
Munizzi, VaShawn Mitchell, William McDowell, Humble Tip and Bone
Hampton.

Rock the Park takes place at Carowinds amusement and water park in
Charlotte, N.C. featuring Third Day, Jeremy Camp, RED, Lecrae, Royal
Tailor, Jamie Grace, and guest speaker David Nasser.