Read about important Crossroads Charlotte events, information and activities.
Sustain Charlotte is a local nonprofit that hopes to solve Charlotte’s sustainability challenges. By all accounts, it looks like Charlotte has a mile-high climb.
But there’s reason for optimism. Sustain Charlotte, along with UNC-Charlotte’s graduate program in Urban Design, will host the first Community Sustainability Awards on Saturday, March 31.
Leaders from local nonprofits, government agencies, businesses and schools will be recognized for their civic action. More than 70 nominations were made. The event is 7-9 p.m. Saturday, March 31, at UNCC’s Center City Building at 320 E. 9th St. The 143,000-square-foot building, which opened last fall, makes for an appropriate venue since it’s LEED-certified.
Local citizens will be rewarded for their efforts at improving the Queen City’s air quality, public transportation, water quality, energy efficiency, parks and green space, said Shannon Binns, executive director of Sustain Charlotte.
Sustain Charlotte is a nonprofit that hopes to ensure a sustainable future for the entire Charlotte metropolitan region, Binns said.
The recent deaths of two children last week increased concern about the lack of sidewalks in Charlotte neighborhoods. However, the city's budget currently doesn't inlcude funding for new sidewalks.
Regional AIDS Interfaith Network (RAIN) works with local churches and groups to help prevent the spread of HIV/Aids. On March 5, the group will co-host a prayer service for individuals with the virus. The service will start at 6:45 p.m. at The Park Church’s west Charlotte campus at 6029 Beatties Ford Road.
The sale of humans for profit is chillingly portrayed in "Cash Crop," on view at the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture. The project by Atlanta-based artist Stephen Hayes extends from American history to overseas sweatshop labor.
The Rev. Vernon Tyson is a key figure in the memoir "Blood Done Sign My Name," written by his son, Duke University professor Timothy Tyson. It's the true story of the racially motivated killing of a 23-year-old black Vietnam-era veteran in Oxford, N.C., in 1970 and the racial unrest that followed. On Sunday, Tyson, 82, of Raleigh, led a Q&A at Gaston College after a showing of the 2009 movie version of the book.
Opera Carolina performer Maurio Hines sang "Quando M'en Vo" from La Boheme at the restaurant at IKEA during a Random Act of Culture last week. Random Act of Culture brings performances from traditional arts venues to non-traditional settings across the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area.
- When is a business not a business? When it involves gambling, as far as York County officials are concerned. The Catawba Indian Nation wants to open a full-scale casino on its York reservation, which has irked presumably “pro-business” local officials.
- Nolan Hargis of Mint Hill was six months old when he was diagnosed with cancer. Jeff Davis of Matthews was 42. Both are cancer survivors being featured in this year’s survivor calendar published by Presbyterian Buddy Kemp Cancer Support Center. The calendar raises awareness about cancer and brings in money to support the center.
- As anticipated, Charlotte police Monday rousted the Occupy Charlotte encampment at the Old City Courthouse. Seven were arrested. It’s a scene playing itself out at Occupy sites across the country.
- Stagnant sales-tax revenues are prompting the Charlotte Area Transit System to seek its fourth fare increase in as many years for bus and light rail. CATS is proposing to raise the one-way local fare for buses and trains to $2, up from $1.75.
- The former home of George Davis, built in 1895 for Johnson C. Smith University’s first black professor, will be restored. The historic landmark early next year is expected to house the Foster Village Network Center, a support program for teens who’ve aged out of foster care.
- The Human Rights Campaign North Carolina Gala is Feb. 23-26. A multitude of state and national gay rights leaders are expected to attend. The event will be held at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
Stories worth sharing this week:
- Mayor Anthony Foxx and fellow Democrats swept this past week’s elections, and Republicans blamed a poor voter turnout among their constituents. But it ain’t necessarily so. According to election results, 19.2 percent of Democrats voted, 18.9 percent of Republicans voted and 11.4 percent of unaffiliated people voted. Race and geography were at least as significant as voter turnout.
- And this past week’s election marked a milestone for Charlotte: The city elected its first openly gay council member, LaWana Mayfield. Mayfield is a longtime community activist whose credentials range from supervising relief work after Hurricane Katrina to serving as a board of advisors member for the Charlotte Lesbian and Gay Fund. She bettered incumbent Warren Turner in the primaries and Republican Ed Toney in the general election.
- Many honored our service people on Veterans Day this past week. But vets returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are finding their sacrifices are largely unappreciated by the current job market. Unemployment among vets returning from the Middle East is more than 12 percent, compared to 9 percent nationwide. Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont is trying to help with a training and job placement program aimed at vets seeking work. It’s called Operation Independence.
- The Charlotte Rescue Mission is trying to raise $300,000 to buy furnishings for the 120 rooms at its new Dove’s Nest residential recovery center. The center, which should be complete in August, is being designed to help homeless women who suffer from addiction, says Tony Marciano, the mission’s executive director. For more information, call 704.333.4673, then press zero.
- The Charlotte Area Transit System took a beating from the feds this past week for failing to adequately include minority and women businesses among its suppliers. The Federal Transit Administration released a report that, among other things, said CATS did not consistently provide a directory of women- and minority-owned companies to prospective bidders and contractors.
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