Read about important Crossroads Charlotte events, information and activities.
When Dee Liss became pastor of the 232-year-old Long Creek Presbyterian Church in Bessemer City last summer, she was able to land a $10,000 grant from the David Cannon Belk Foundation. The money was aimed at digging up information about an historic cemetery near the church grounds. The effort uncovered more than 90 unmarked headstones now known as “the slave cemetery."
A rally for slain Florida boy Trayvon Martin was held Saturday, April 7, in the Our Children's Memorial in Frazier Park in Charlotte. The rally was organized by the group, Help Outlaw Outrageous Discriminative Injustices Everywhere, or H.O.O.D.I.E. The rally aims to not only to only honor Trayvon but also other teens that have been lost in the community due to racial profiling.
Workers this week drove pilings deep into the ground at Charlotte Douglas International Aiport’s new, $160-million hourly parking deck. That project, scheduled for completion in 2014, is part of the $1 billion expansion program Airport Director Jerry Orr plans for the next seven years, including an eight-lane entrance road, a fifth runway, an expanded main terminal, and a freestanding international terminal where the rental car facility currently stands.
Finalists for the superintendent’s seat of Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools are scheduled to meet with the Board of Education, CMS staff and community members April 11 – 12, 2012. Names of the three finalists will be disclosed Monday, April 9, 2012. On Wednesday, April 11 the candidates will meet with principals and staff, and participate in school tours. Public meetings are scheduled for Wednesday afternoon at sites throughout Mecklenburg County with a final meeting at Northwest School of the Arts for parents, students and staff.
Despite a tough economy, the U.S. Census bureau reports Charlotte saw record growth of nearly 65% from 2000 to 2010. Analysts say bank jobs are a large contributor to that. Two other cities in the Carolinas made the top 10 list. Raleigh came in No. 2 with more than 63% growth. And Greenville, S.C., snagged the No. 9 spot.
Playwright Suzan-Lori Parks' plays tackle serious topics, such as race, family and gender, but Parks doesn’t let weighty themes consume her. In fact, she was quite funny at Davidson College.
In a ranging talk April 3, Parks shared humorous stories about the inspiration for her popular plays “In the Blood” and “F---ing A.” She gave audience members a knee-slapping tale about her Sanskrit tattoos and offered witty advice to aspiring writers as well as the culture-consuming public. Parks said she doesn’t set out to tackle a particular topic when she writes.
“I start with: I want to write, I want to create stuff,” Parks said. “Usually, I write beneath the surface about things that people aren’t ready to talk about yet.”
Even if Parks works do strike a nerve and win tons of accolades for doing so, Parks doesn’t bow to expectations. She said everyone expected her to write another play such as “Topdog/Underdog” after that play was so successful. Instead, she wrote “365 Days, 365 Plays.” The collection of short plays about everything from Abraham Lincoln to frozen arms is nothing like "Topdog."
Parks said although artists have a responsibility to try to make the world a better place, it isn’t the responsibility of theater or television to address things in our culture. She said people need to address things in American culture. She said the everyday interactions between people should be the subject material for plays.
“We all have a responsibility to increase the peace and spread compassion,” she said.
I was a college sophomore in 1991 when Anita Hill made the groundbreaking sexual harassment accusations against now Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
I’ve never seen her speak before so I was excited to hear her talk “Truth to Power” at UNC Charlotte on March 27, an event presented by the Women & Gender Studies Program. Many of the students in the audience were either infants or eggs when the hearings captured the nation.
Nicole Palacios, a UNCC sophomore, studied the hearings and was excited to hear Hill speak. “This is something huge,” Palacios said after the speech.
Hill had a conversational tone, laced with humor, and drenched in passion. During her talk, Hill said the confirmation hearings didn’t define her. They definitely inspired her. Although Hill didn’t discuss the case from a personal perspective, she did say testifying in Thomas’ confirmation hearings wasn’t on her bucket list. Hill would later say that she came forward when Thomas was nominated because she couldn’t not speak up regarding the man who would hold such a position of power.
The students, faculty and parents of St. Patrick Catholic School and Brookstone School, two Charlotte elementary schools of different racial and socio-economic backgrounds, are in their second year of working together to build a garden and a deeper relationship. With funding from Front Porch Grants, the schools have engaged in a series of events together over the past two years from planting, harvesting and cooking to learning about composting, nutrition, organic farming and the weather. By continuing to work together towards a common goal, the students families and staff of the two schools have been able to build a strong relationship between the diverse communities.
Most recently, third and fourth graders from the schools participated together in a seed planting event on March 14, 2012 at St. Patrick School. The students sampled fresh salsa made with ingredients harvested from their garden and spent time together planting seeds that they will grow in their classrooms. In mid-May, they will come together again to transplant the seedlings into their school gardens. Assisting with the seed planting event was Mary Roberts, an organic farmer from Windcrest Farms, in Monroe, NC.
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Crossroads Charlotte presents four stories based on real data about Charlotte's future and asks the community to Imagine Our Tomorrow and respond to the stories.Imagine
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