It takes me to a different place

By Charles Kelleher Harris

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 7.30.05 PMGlenwood Barnes loves working with his hands. For the last 12 years he has worked creating beautiful custom made cabinetry.  But his craftsmanship with woodworking is only the beginning of Barnes creativity.  “When I was a kid I didn’t do to good in school,” Barnes said, “But I was creative.”  Barnes was born in Lancaster, South Carolina but raised primarily in Philadelphia. Barnes was one of 13 children.  In his late teens Barnes began taking art classes at a Philadelphia night school. It was there that his true talent blossomed.  Recognizing his skill, Barnes tried, unsuccessfully to garner attention for his work. Frustrated, Barnes put his brushes away for a very long time.  “I stopped,” Barnes recalled, “I lost interest.”  Meanwhile, Barnes and his wife of 25 years, Vernere, raised theirñ three children.  During the lull in his painting, Barnes began practicing Tai Chi and focused on woodworking.  After returning to Charlotte in the 1990s, his interest in painting was sparked anew.  While continuing to work in cabinetry with Metro Woodcrafter Inc, Barnes studied at Mint Hill Arts under Carlos Cotera.  Continue reading

Share

Independence students compete to feed the hungry

This fall, the Academy of International Studies at Independence High School is competing to feed the hungry.

The competition is the Student Hunger Drive of the Carolinas, a competition among more than 20 schools to donate food to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

This is Independence’s first year competing in the hunger drive, which started in 2010 with 12 schools, but has since grown, serving Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Lancaster, and surrounding counties.

Syndie Fleener is director of AIS at Independence, a school within a school that focuses on global education, a part of that being community service and this year, the hunger drive.

“This whole hunger drive is so fantastic,” Fleener said. “To see these teenagers get so involved in this.”

The school that donates the most will receive $2,500, and the runner-up $1,000. Other awards are given for most improved and student MVP, and each school that donates 5,000 pounds is given a $200 cash prize.

To date, the competition has donated 150,000 pounds of food in its two-year history, and last year, Ardrey Kell won the competition, donating 18,000 pounds. The competition kicked off with a talent show at Second Harvest, with hundreds of students attending and watching the other schools perform.

“It was fantastic to see hundreds of kids at the Second Harvest Food Bank—teenagers you know, really caring about the community,” Fleener said.

The competition lasts until November 14, when all the food will be weighed, and the winners announced. To date, Fleener says Independence hasn’t weighed their donations, but they’ve got 10 boxes of food, and the barrels that they use for donating are already full again.

“The kids have been wonderful,” Fleener said. “They’ve gone out into their communities and asked for donations—we have gotten so many donations. So far, it’s been really a big success.”

To donate, bring food to Independence High School anytime, preferably canned goods, or send the food in with a student.

To stay up to date on the hunger drive, follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hungerdrivecarolina.

Share