April 2008

The Independent's 2008 primary picks

Independent Weekly endorsements for the 2008 primary have just been posted online at http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/Content?oid=oid%3A256728

They will be in tomorrow's print edition as well. Here's a summary:

  • Commissioners, District 2: Leo Allison
  • Commissioners, At-large: Bernadette Pelissier
  • Orange County Board of Education: Steve Halkiotis, Eddie Eubanks, Tony McKnight
  • Transfer Tax: Yes
  • District Court Judge: Page Vernon


Bill Clinton campaign event in Hillsborough

From the web:

Solutions for America Event with President Bill Clinton in Hillsborough!


Wednesday, April 23, 2008 at 1:45 PM - 3:45 PM


Orange County Baseball Field
Corner of N. Hassell St & W. Queen St
Hillsborough, NC 27278


Wednesday, April 23, 2008 - 9:45am to 11:45am


Orange County Baseball Field


The other day, Jesse DeConto of the CHN posted a comment on the N&O Blog about a happening in Carrboro. It has drawn almost no response, for obvious reasons I guess.

Interrogating the witness

By now I have come to expect dissent from our newest Town Council member Matt Czajkowski. Whether it's defending power companies against the community's conservation efforts or resisting smart urban growth, Matt can be counted on for almost knee-jerk opposition to his colleagues' progressive ideas.

But he has now taken to personally attacking hardworking, knowledgeable, volunteers like George Cianciolo (aka George C here on OP). I served on the Planning Board alongside George, who also spent 6 years on the Chapel Hill Transportation Board, and has also represented us on UNC's Leadership Advisory Council and the regional Special Transit Advisory Committee. George is the kind of guy who probably spends more time in meetings than most people spend watching TV every week - and that's not even counting the research and preparation for doing the community's work.

The Chapel Hill Planning Board voted 6-1 to recommend the project to the council, and it was during board chair George Cianciolo's presentation that differences of opinion concerning the future needs of the town became apparent again.

Reenactment of Polk's 1847 Visit to Chapel Hill

Welcome to Chapel Hill President Polk!

The Preservation Society of Chapel Hill will be recreating the 1847 visit of President James K. Polk to Chapel Hill on Saturday, May 3, 2008. The event will be from 10 am to 4 pm at the Horace Williams House at 610 E. Rosemary Street. Costumed reenactors will be preparing for the President’s arrival while Mexican War soldiers drill on the historic lawn of the 1840s Horace Williams House. Children’s games, period music, and demonstrations will also be part of the day’s activities. The event is free and open to the community.

Recreating the visit of one of America’s least known Presidents seems, at first, to be less than thrilling but the Preservation Society of Chapel Hill thinks just the opposite. On May 3, 2008, the Society will host President James K. Polk’s return to Chapel Hill, complete with period decorations, music, and soldiers of the era. The event seems like a pleasant day of living history but why Polk? “I had originally planned the event based on the age of the Horace Williams House” says Preservation Society Director Ernest Dollar, “but the more I learned about Polk’s presidency, the more I realized it eerily mirrored current events.”

Polk took a rare trip away from the Whitehouse in 1847 to visit his alma mater. Polk attended the University of North Carolina in 1816 and became the 11th President of the United States in 1844, only one of three from North Carolina. During his visit to Chapel Hill national issues such as war, immigration, and the economy consumed America. By highlighting the similarities between the 1840s and the first decade of the 21st century, Dollar hopes to make history relevant.

“I was struck by the comparison between the dubious beginnings of the Mexican War and the controversy surrounding the invasion of Iraq,” said Dollar. Another similar issue Dollar highlights as another connection with the American of Polk age is the question of immigration, “then it was the Irish and now it is the Latinos.” The irony of the event is embodied in the comparison Polk’s election in 1844 to George Bush’s in 2000. Polk was the country’s first dark horse candidate and won when a third political party siphoned away votes from the popular candidate Henry Clay. Dollar concluded by adding, “It really makes you consider the old axiom of history repeating itself.”

Dollar is confident the children’s games, period music, and demonstrations slated for the day will be fun for all ages, but in the end, he hopes the public will come away with an increased appreciation for history’s role in our modern lives and how it ultimately shapes the future.


Saturday, May 3, 2008 - 6:00am to 12:00pm


Horace Williams House, 610 E. Rosemary Street

Carrboro Day

Residents of Carrboro and surrounding communities are invited to come to the 13th annual Carrboro Day celebration on May 4.

The theme this year is "Celebrating a Sustainable Community" in recognition of Carrboro's ongoing achievements in this area. The event will be trash free; attendees are encouraged to achieve this goal by throwing away all recyclable materials in the proper containers provided.

This year's activities, which will begin at 1 p.m., will include music at the Town Hall front lawn by seven local and regional performers; poetry readings; a magic show; a special appearance by Mother Goose; and a books and baked goods sale.


Sunday, May 4, 2008 - 9:00am to 1:00pm


Carrboro Town Commons

Carrboro Music Festival

The 2008 Carrboro Music Festival will be held on Sunday, September 28 at various venues throughout Carrboro, NC.


Sunday, September 28, 2008 - 7:00am

Obama is messing with us.

Many of OP readers stood in lines this morning aiming to obtain tickets for the Rally next week in Carrboro. Looks like he’s asking us to do it all over again tomorrow in many of the same places for a rally occurring Monday evening at the Smith Center.

Locally, tickets will be obtainable again at the Moorhead Planetarium and also at the Carrboro town hall. Will I get in line again tomorrow? Probably. I am such a sucker.


Schools propose 08-09 budgets

The County Commissioners have received the proposed budgets from both school systems. According to the Chapel Hill Herald, the city schools are requesting $61.2 million, a %12.56 increase in last year's budget. The county system is requesting an %8.35 increase to $23.8, which is actually less than they asked for last year.

The county school board recognizes, "the fiscal realities of the day," said school board Chairman Ted Triebel.

"[The budget] is well-researched, fully-debated and it is lean, very lean," he said. "This new fiscal approach, this minimal budget, comes with high expectations and confidence that you, our board of county commissioners, will favorably respond to the citizens of our district and look at this responsible budget to provide the necessary opportunities for our county's youth."

- heraldsun.com: County praises school boards' budgets, 4/23/08

Haw River Festival

Festival Details and Directions:

Come enjoy a Celebration of the Haw River with music, art, puppets, environmental displays and activities. You can go down to Bynum Beach and try some river monitoring and kids can take a short guided canoe ride on the river. Kids can also paint their very own critter cut-out made by Bynum’s own Clyde Jones. A fabulous Old Town canoe will be raffled and there’s a silent art auction that includes works by Clyde Jones. There’s the ‘river of chalk” art project happening on the bridge, and much to learn about the river, Jordan Lake and other environmental issues in our watershed. The great cooks at the Ruritan Club will have tasty food for sale all day.

Proceeds from the Haw River Festival help fund our work throughout the year to protect the Haw River and Jordan Lake. We are requesting a $5 donation for adults and $3 for kids under 14 years old (babies are free).

Bynum is located on the Haw River off of US 15-501, between Pittsboro and Chapel Hill.

From Chapel Hill (and points north), go south on 15-501 for about 12 miles and turn left onto Bynum Rd. (just after Allen and Son BBQ). Stay on Bynum Rd and follow signs to parking and the Festival site.

From Pittsboro (and points south), take 15 –501 north about 4 miles from Pittsboro and turn right onto Bynum Rd, (before crossing the Haw River on 15-501) and follow to dead end at river. Park on Bynum Beach Rd. and walk across the Bynum Bridge to the festival site.



Saturday, May 10, 2008 - 9:00am


The old Bynum Bridge on Bynum Road in Bynum, North Carolina



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