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Smoking, tobacco ban off to uneventful start

By Andrew Stark

It’s been just over three months since the Town of Mint Hill adopted a smoke-free stance in and around government grounds, vehicles and property and went tobacco-free in Mecklenburg County parks, but you’d hardly know the ban was implemented.

“I haven’t heard a peep,” town manager Brian Welch sad. “Folks just don’t smoke as much as they used to, so it doesn’t have as much of an effect as it may have had in the past. But no, in all honesty I haven’t heard one person say anything about it.” […]

By |May 22nd, 2015|Around Town, Arts, Featured Posts, Good deeds, History|0 Comments

Patriots get tough first test on gridiron

By Andrew Stark

First-year Independence football coach Justin Hardin won’t have any time to ease into his new role as the leader of the Patriots.

CarolinaPreps.tv released the schedule for its third-annual Kickoff Night, a grouping of two games that annually kick off the football season in a stand-alone format, and the Patriots are on tap for the nightcap for the third straight year.

After bulldozing South Meck with 49-0 wins each of the past two seasons, the Patriots will get a little tougher challenge this year in two-time defending Class 4-AA champion Mallard Creek at Memorial Stadium on Aug. 22, a Saturday, at approximately 8 p.m.

The Independence-Mallard Creek game will be played 30 minutes after the kickoff game of Charlotte Country Day and Myers Park concludes. […]

By |May 22nd, 2015|Around Town, Arts, Featured Posts, History, Independence High School|0 Comments

Sidewalks, rectangles next on Mint Hill’s list

By Andrew Stark

The Town of Mint Hill seems to always be working on the next big project, and to Town Manager Brian Welch, those are well defined and clearly laid out in terms of sidewalks and rectangles.

Welch said the first priority has been continuing the ongoing sidewalk construction operation, which he sees as the Board of Commissioner’s No. 1 priority.

“At this point in time I don’t view it as this or that sidewalk project, I view it as these guys are making a commitment to build them and we’re going to hammer it out,” Welch said. “I didn’t take a measurement of how much sidewalk we had in this town before they told me to build more, but we’ve built a lot of sidewalks in the past couple of years and I’ve got a feeling this board will continue with that.” […]

Chasing Dreams

By Andrew Stark

Bain Elementary School third- through fifth-grade boys learned about fitness, teamwork and character in Xcel 2 Fitness, a program new to the school this year.

What do swimming noodles, cones, tennis balls, climbing ladders and a group of third- to fifth-graders have in common?

To elementary school boys involved in Xcel 2 Fitness, those are the building blocks to friendship, self-confidence, athleticism and teamwork, and they’ve been on display since Bain Elementary began its program this fall.

“They have noodles, cones and everything else out here and (outsiders) probably look at it like, ‘OK, what is this going to do for them?’” Bain instructor and physical education teacher Jake Doster said. “But if they can get together and do games and activities that are put together in a curriculum and work as a team, that’s what sports pretty much are.

“They’re running through ladders and improving their agility and working on things like that. Everything is based around fitness and developing as teammates.” […]