Monday, January 31, 2011

Episcopal High School Meeting

"The Episcopal High School of Charlotte will hold their next update meeting Monday, February 7th, 7:00 p.m. at Christ Episcopal Church 1412 Providence Road.  The Rev. Rob Spaugh,Chaplin at Davidson College will discuss the mission of being both a community of faith and a community of intellectual engagement.  The public is welcomed."

Friday, January 28, 2011

CATS iPhone Application

"Have you ever arrived at a transit stop and wanted to know when the next bus or train will arrive or depart?  Well, now your iPhone can help you answer those questions.  CATS is pleased to announce a new FREE app for the iPhone with versions for Blackberry, Droid and web-enabled smartphones arriving in March 2011.  The 'Ride CATS' mobile app estimates the next arrival time and the next three arrival times at any transit stop for any CATS bus route or LYNX train.  'Ride CATS' is an expansion of the introductory mobile app launched last year for the LYNX Blue Line and is the first of many mobile innovations CATS will be making this year.
Besides checking on your next ride, the 'Ride CATS' iPhone app also features:
Displaying the next three times a transit vehicle is to arrive at a stop or station
Saving your most frequented stops and routes for quick access to get the next bus/train trip
Showing an entire route and stops on a Google Map
Complete stop listing with an option to display it on a Google Map
Planning a trip through Google Transit
Spanish and English language options
And, sending feedback  to CATS Customer Service"
The app can be found in the iTunes store here.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Charlotte Center City Partners Update

Last fall the association opened a new channel of communication between residents and Charlotte Center City Partners through the e-mail address  Thank you to those who contributed their thoughts, both in general and regarding topical issues such as the City Market, which were submitted (anonymously) to CCCP.  Please also be reminded that this channel remains open for additional feedback going forward, and that the informational worksheet "Neighborhood Associations and Charlotte Center City Partners" will remain accessible under our Documents page.
Utilizing your feedback and my own experiences as guidance, I have been working with Michael Smith, Darlene Heater, and Moira Quinn to improve and clarify how the goals of residents are included in CCCP's program of work.  At its conclusion I intend to amend this process to the worksheet noted above.  For now, please find the following three documents, currently in draft form, that CCCP will use to guide its work this year:

One of my initial suggestions was to identify the specific priorities of the First, Third, and Fourth Wards (rather than simply "Uptown neighborhoods," which does not illustrate our distinctive goals).  Soon I will have a better understanding of the role residents and the association will play in ensuring our goals are reflected.
In the meantime, feel free to submit your thoughts to as well.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Irwin Avenue School Update

Last week I met with the principal and PTA representatives of the Villa Heights Academic Center.  The Learning Immersion & Talent Development Center will relocate its highly-rated program to Third Ward's Irwin Avenue school beginning in the 2011-12 school year.  Two key issues emerged from our discussion:

  1. Because of its location, the "walk zone" surrounding the school is largely captured by Elmwood/Pinewood Cemetery.  Because students living in the walk zone enjoy preferential treatment in the magnet lottery, I have requested that this zone be expanded southward to capture more homes/students in Third Ward.
  2. The school will adjust or change its name to reflect its magnet status and new program.  In the very near future, an e-mail survey will be distributed to Third Ward requesting feedback on the new or updated name.
The school's representatives are very eager to connect with Third Ward parents and other residents, as they already have our neighbors in Wesley Heights.  Those with an interest in the school should attend or coordinate one of the following:
If you would like to contact the PTA president, Paul Reali, his e-mail address is

Darlene Heater of Charlotte Center City Partners has focused her time and energy on this issue as well, having reached out to CMS administration regarding student assignment/planning for all Uptown neighborhoods, as well as facilities, the magnet program office, and the principals.

(A CMS official has confirmed that the land trade agreement for the site adjacent to the school, which would have facilitated the unpopular Sycamore @Gateway development, will not proceed.)

I will post more information as it becomes available.

Recycling Reminder

This week is a GREEN week, recyclables will be picked up on Wednesday.  For a recycling calendar, see this link.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Gateway Village Parking

Please be aware of parking changes at the Gateway Village YMCA.  Information can be found here.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Happy Hour Tonight

Don't forget tonight's neighborhood happy hour at Frankie's 710 Trattoria.  $2.50 domestic bottles are on special, we will get started at 7:00p sharp.  See you there!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Donated Furniture Needed

Happy MLK Day!  If you have "donate-able" furniture, please be aware of the following:

"Tamikea Swaringer, greeter/cashier in [the Johnson & Wales University] dining center was severely injured in November. Tamikea was waiting for her youngest child at the school bus stop when the bus jumped the curb and ran over her foot. It was crushed so badly they had to amputate just below the knee. As word spread of Tamikea's accident, the JWU campus community came together to establish the 'Keep Tamikea Smiling' fund. Faculty, staff and students generously donated to our campaign; from bake sales to hockey game proceeds to donations large and small, we raised enough money to cover her housing and utility costs for the next few months.

Since being discharged from the hospital, Tamikea and her children have lived with her mother, but now she is ready to get back on her own. Due to her physical needs, she is unable to return to her previous apartment. This week she found a rental property close to her mom that fits all of her and her family's needs. However, there is a great need right now to secure furniture for their new home. If you have gently used furniture that you would like to donate, please contact me [] as soon as possible. Her target move in date is January 21-22. We would also ask that if you know anyone who may be willing to help, please share this email with them.

Their basic needs include:

  • Bedrooms - 3 queen or full size beds; 1 or 2 twin beds; 3-4 dressers/nightstands; 1 wardrobe. They do not have to be matching sets, although that would be nice, just in decent condition. No mattresses please.
  • Living Room - Sofa, loveseat, 1-2 chairs, end/coffee tables, TV stand, TV
  • Kitchen - table with 4-6 chairs, refrigerator
  • Miscellaneous - area rugs, lamps, bookcase, small desk 

If you cannot help with any of the above items, but would like to support Tamikea and her family, cash or gift card donations would be greatly appreciated to purchase other needed household items such as bedding and other linens, window blinds, paint, etc.

Bernice Parenti
Johnson & Wales University"

Congratulations... our neighbors across Uptown in First Ward, who presented a pair of police bikes to the Central Division of CMPD: "Thanks to participation from the community and local restaurants such as Blue Restaurant & Bar and Villa Francesca the raffle was a success and the Community Fund was able to purchase two bikes rather than one ... Darlene Heater from Charlotte Center City Partners helped to deliver the bikes said 'Center City and CMPD are fortunate to have tremendous support from the First Ward Community Fund.  For nearly a decade, this organization has provided programs and contributions to our community that positively impact the First Ward neighborhood as well as Center City.  We appreciate their many efforts to make this a great place to live, work and play'."

Friday, January 14, 2011

Food & Drink / Grocer / Membership / City Market

The association will be hosting a neighborhood social/happy hour on Thursday, January 20th, 7:00p at Frankie's 710 Trattoria.  Drop in to have a drink and meal with friends and neighbors - everyone is welcome.  Board member Mike Sposato is organizing this fun chance to check out a new neighborhood restaurant.  Food and drink specials TBD.

Our westside neighbors in Wesley Heights, Seversville, and Biddleville-Smallwood are actively recruiting a full-size grocer to locate on West Trade Street.  They would like to know what Third Ward residents would prefer: Harris Teeter or Lowe's Foods?  E-mail with your feedback.

2011 membership in the Third Ward Neighborhood Association is now open!  Dues are a voluntary, inexpensive, and easy way to strengthen and promote Third Ward.  They remain $25 payable by check, or $27.50 online (a convenient invoice will be submitted to residents).  The association has an ambitious agenda for 2011.  Please consider contributing your support - and contact me with your questions.

Working groups for the proposed City Market are open for enrollment.  If you are interested in contributing, please contact

Third Ward's Facebook page syndicates the website and includes pictures and events too; "Like" it to add it to your own feed.

Have a great weekend!

Trash Pickup Update

After being delayed again, Solid Waste Services should have resumed trash pickup yesterday.  According to a press release, "Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday customers should leave their garbage and recycling carts curbside until all collections are completed."  As a "Wednesday," Third Ward residents should continue to leave the bins at the curb until pickup.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Wednesday Trash Pickup

Subject to change pending weather conditions, regular trash and recycling pickup for Third Ward is expected Wednesday according to Mecklenburg 311.  Bulk and yard waste items will not be picked up this week.

CMPD Update

Good afternoon!  Here is the most recent report from Response Area Commander Nick Pellicone.  Please note the 2010 vs. 2009 statistics therein.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

"It’s a Brand NEW DAY at the Y!"

"We‘re celebrating by opening our doors to everyone in the Charlotte area Tuesdays, January 11, 18 & 25!

Open Houses – Tuesdays, January 11, 18 & 25
January 11 – Association wide - All 18 branches in the Association will be open to the public to check us out, workout and learn more about our new brand.
January 18 & 25 – Center City wide - All four Center City branches will be open to the public to check us out, workout and learn more about our new brand.

At the Open Houses all three days:
Members can bring a friend for FREE and will receive a free t-shirt (in exchange for email address & while supplies last).
Guests can pick up a free 2 week guest pass to try us out for two more weeks.
We’ll have a separate (manned) table set up for members and guest to learn about and engage in our new brand.

Got questions about the new brand?! 
For information on the new brand please visit: or contact Ann Dellavalle, or 704.716.6419."

Monday, January 3, 2011

Parking Passes

Happy new year!  Parking permits for Victoria Avenue, South Clarkson Street, North Irwin Avenue, Westbrook Drive, and other Third Ward streets are expiring.  To get your decals, hang tags, and stadium event tags, visit Park It! at 1440 South Tryon Street.  Decals are $30 and typically come with one or more hang tags for a second car or guests.  Please note that certain information is required to prove residency; see the Park It! website for details.