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April 2016

Chatham elected bodies oppose HB 2

The Chatham County Commissioners, the Town of Pittsboro and the Chatham County Democratic Party have all passed resolutions opposing HB 2.

Here is the resolution from the Chatham County Democratic Party that passed on Saturday:

WHEREAS, on February 22, 2016, the Charlotte City Council approved a local ordinance that adds marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression to its list of categories protected from discrimination in city contracting and public accommodations; and

WHEREAS, on March 23, 2016, in response to the Charlotte ordinance, the North Carolina General Assembly in special session ratified, and Governor Pat McCrory signed, House Bill 2 (Session Law 2016-3), the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act; and

WHEREAS, House Bill 2 repeals the Charlotte ordinance by establishing new statewide standards for what constitutes discriminatory practice in employment and public accommodations; and by establishing new statewide requirements for bathrooms and changing facilities in all public agencies, including schools; and Read more...



Burkhart Joins Chatham County to Lead Environmental Quality

Chatham County announces that Brian Burkhart, P.E., an environmental engineer, is the new director of Environmental Quality, which oversees the Solid Waste and Recycling Division and the Land and Water Resources Division.

Burkhart, who started work in February, is a graduate of NC State University with a degree in environmental engineering. He is a North Carolina registered Professional Engineer with extensive experience in both the public and private engineering sectors. Prior to coming to the county, he served as project manager at Kleinfelder, an engineering firm.

"The job with Chatham County allows me to get back into the public sector side of things," Burkhart said. "I love outdoor activities, such as fishing and hiking. This gives me a chance to help protect the vital natural resources of Chatham County so that generations of residents can enjoy them for a long time to come." Read more...



New Director at Family Violence & Rape Crisis Services

Family Violence & Rape Crisis Services (FVRC) has announced that Shamecca Bryant joined the agency this month as Executive Director. Bryant is the former director of the Orange County Rape Crisis Center located in Chapel Hill, and served at that organization for eight years.

Bryant brings 12 years of fundraising experience and six years of experience running a rape crisis center to the position. In addition to serving on the board of the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault (NCCASA) as well as the board of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce, Bryant has also sat on multiple nonprofit, advocacy, and anti-violence task forces in the community.

"It is an honor to serve at an agency with such a long and successful history of empowering survivors and I look forward to working with the staff, board, and larger community to transition the agency to its next phase," Bryant said. "The Family Violence & Rape Crisis Services Center is a stand-out organization and is vital to helping protect survivors and educate the community about violence prevention." Read more...



14th Spring Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival moves to May

With a new May date, local festival looking forward to its 14 th spring comfortably nestled in the arts-rich hills of Chatham County. From the Triangle to Nashville to Cuba and Mali, a diverse lineup is only one reason to join the fun.

The Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance will hold its annual spring festival from Thursday, May 5 to Sunday, May 8. The festival will feature more than 50 bands and performers from just down the road to across the globe, on two large outdoor stages, a large circus-esque Dance Tent, and an intimate Cabaret Tent. Located on 72 beautiful farmland acres just outside of Pittsboro, not far from Chapel Hill, Raleigh, Durham, Burlington, and Greensboro.

The festival also features a variety of vendors selling hand-made crafts and delicious food. Children and families are entertained and educated with various hands-on activities, workshops, shows, and on-site adventures. There are healing arts practitioners (massage, acupuncture) as well as yoga and movement classes, perfect for bodies that have been dancing and camping. Festival attendees can learn to dance, play an instrument, and make their homes more sustainable through various classes and workshops offered. Read more...


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Page 1 - Columbia, Maryland lessons for Chatham Park * My solar awakening * Water, the greatest necessity to all living things - Page 2 - Dispatches & Briefs - Page 3 - Chatham Mills Farmers' Market springs to life - Page 4 - Our Railroad War - Page 5 - The power (and perils) of positive thinking - Page 6 - Ash Trees in the Balance - Page 7 - Water (cont. from page 1) * Solar (cont. from page 1) - Page 8 - Infinite Sky: (Part 5 of 10) * Community (cont. from page 1) - Page 9 - Fantasy Thinking - Page 10 - Make plans now to attend the free Green Home Tour - Page 11 - You are an eternal spirit - Page 12 - Celebrate Earth Day: April 22 * Earth Day, Chatham, 2016 - Page 13 - Laying to rest myths about Chatham Park, Part 2 - Page 14 - Chatham Opinion Line * Briefs (cont. from page 1) - Page 15 - Chatham Opinion Line - Page 16 - Chatham Comunidad: El Vínculo Hispano Reabrirá en Siler City este Verano/El Vínculo Hispano will reopen in Siler City this summer
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Choose your farm adventure at the Piedmont Farm Tour

Tour Local, Sustainable Farms and Discover the Delicious Meat, Dairy, Fruits and Veggies Produced Right Here in the Piedmont! April 23-24 from 2-6 p.m.

The Piedmont Farm Tour is the perfect way to see where your food comes from, meet your local farmers, and sample delicious farm-fresh foods. This year's Piedmont Farm Tour opens the barn doors and farm gates of 38 scenic and sustainable farms in Orange, Chatham, Alamance, and Person counties. See baby barn animals, taste goat and cow cheese at award-winning dairies, tour gorgeous organic produce farms, enjoy a hayride, plant your own seedlings, learn about local wine and craft beer production, sample delicious fermented pickles, and take home tasty treats like gourmet mushrooms, pasture raised meats, freshly laid eggs, and sustainably grown veggies. Don't forget to take a cooler to bring home some of the delicious products for sale at many farms!

With 38 fabulous farms on the tour, it's tough to know where to start! We've made it easy with our Farm Tour Adventure Trails - 10 great suggested routes that minimize driving and maximize farm fun! Buy Your Tickets Now for the 21st Annual Piedmont Farm Tour! www.carolinafarmstewards.org/pft

Chatham Steps to celebrate National Walking Day on April 6

Chatham County residents are encouraged to wear comfortable walking shoes and be ready to lace up and go for National Walking Day on Wednesday, April 6, 2016. We will be celebrating National Walking Day with the American Heart Association.

Physical inactivity continues to be a serious national problem, with 70 percent of adults in America not getting enough physical activity. This puts individuals at a greater risk for heart disease, stroke and other blood vessel diseases. The American Heart Association recommends a minimum of 150 minutes per week of physical activity for adults and 60 minutes per day for children and adolescents.

On April 6, we will join millions of Americans as they pledge to live a healthier lifestyle and get physically active. Here is what you can do to join in the celebration:

First, show your support and wear sneakers to school or work on April 6 (you may even choose to wear red shoe laces).
Second, participate in one of the many walks around Chatham County and pledge to live a healthier lifestyle! The first ten people to arrive at each location will receive a free National Walking Day water bottle. The locations and times for April 6 are:

· 8:30 a.m. - Southwest District Park, 15124 NC Hwy 902, Bear Creek
· 9 a.m.—Eastern Chatham Senior Center, 365 Hwy 87, Pittsboro
· 10:30 a.m.—Western Chatham Senior Center, 112 Village Lake Road, Siler City
· Noon—Pittsboro (Meet at the new Justice Center)
· Noon—Siler City Health Dept. Clinic, 1000 S. Tenth Avenue, Siler City to Paul Braxton Park, 1000 S, 10th Ave, Siler City
· 4 p.m.—Rock Ridge Park, 1397 Old Sanford Road, Moncure
· 5:15 p.m.—Curt Askins Memorial Park, 355 Goldston Glendon Road, Goldston
· 5:30 p.m.—Northeast District Park—5408 Big Woods Road, Chapel Hill
· 5:30 p.m.– Loves Creek Greenway (meet at Bray Park Parking Lot - 800 Alston Bridge Road, Siler City)
· 6 p.m.—Central Carolina Community College Track, 764 West Street, Pittsboro

Since you will be laced up and ready to go, we challenge you to take a 30-minute walk on April 6—and keep it up! Start a habit of daily walking at school, work or home.

Visit Heart.org/Walking and use the American Heart Association’s free tips and tools to stay motivated with your walking program. Don’t forget to mark your calendar for Wednesday, April 6 and join us in our celebration at locations throughout Chatham County. Chatham County’s Walking Day event is collaboration of: Chatham County Parks & Recreation, Chatham County Public Health Department, Chatham County Council on Aging, Pittsboro Parks, Goldston Recreation, and the Town of Siler City’s Parks and Recreation program. Prizes sponsored by the Chatham Parks Foundation are awarded to the first ten people to register at each location.

Information about all of the public walking trails in Chatham County may be found online in the highlighted box at ww.chathamnc.org/Index.aspx?page=708. Or call 919.545.8555 to request a flyer. You can also visit www.chathamnc.org/ActiveChatham to learn more about being active, view the online map for places to walk, bike, and play in Chatham County and see the compiled list of walking and running groups and when they meet.

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