HAWK: keeping Mecklenburg for the animals


Mecklenburg County can lose up to 41 acres per day to development, and one organization has started in their own backyards to get some of those acres back for the Mecklenburg area’s wildlife.

Habitat and Wildlife Keepers, or HAWK, is a grassroots organization of like-minded individuals who share an interest in conserving the environment and wildlife in the area.

HAWK is a chapter of the North Carolina Wildlife Federation, and is the first national chapter of the wildlife federation in North Carolina.

Their territory is Southeastern Mecklenburg County and parts of Union County, but they are based in Matthews, where the organization has done extensive work.

“We are an enthusiastic group of wildlife lovers,” said HAWK treasurer and co-founder  Carol Buie-Jackson.

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Mint Hill Middle/Queen’s Grant locked down for gun scare

This morning, Mint Hill Middle School and Queen’s Grant community school were briefly placed on lockdown, after Mint Hill Police received a call saying there was a man with a gun near the area.

No suspect was found, and Mint Hill Police urge that the lockdown was only a precautionary measure, and that students at either school were never in danger.

A press release by Mint Hill Police reads:

“at approximately 1016hrs, Mint Hill Police were advised that a passing motorist observed a “tan” skin male, slender build, approximately 5’6 to 5’8 was walking along Idlewild Road near Kale Lane. The complainant advised that the male was walking in the direction of Mint Hill Middle School near the wood line. The complainant advised the male was carrying a red backpack and a long gun (shotgun). He was approximately 1/4 to 1/2 mile from the school in a heavily wooded area.”

Officers from Mint Hill Police Department, Matthews Police Department, and CMS Law Enforcement circulated the area for around 90 minutes, with help from a CMPD Air Unit.
No subject was ever found, and officers cleared the area.

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Bright Blessings celebrates MLK Day with service marathon

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2013, a group of local volunteers worked through the day to provide help and some happiness to local homeless children.

Throughout the day, 140 people worked to wrap books and birthday gift sets, create birthday cards, hygiene kits, make pillows, and more. 

Bright Blessings, a nonprofit organization in Matthews, hosted the day of service at their “Giving Village” in Matthews, in honor of MLK Day, providing area volunteers a way to help homeless children in the greater Charlotte region.
In 2005, co-founder Amy Cervantes started Bright Blessings with her husband John after a birthday party for their eldest son, who was turning three. 
“Well here was Alex, and he was surrounded by all these family and friends and beaming with joy and feeling very, very special and loved,” Cervantes said. “What about kids who maybe don’t get to experience that, and that led us to think about homeless childrenčdo they have a chance to celebrate their birthdays?”
The program was also founded to promote volunteerism and service among community members.
“Part of our mission here at Bright Blessings is not only to serve the homeless population, but to also encourage volunteerism through the community, and especially with families,” Cervantes said.
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Relay for Life hits the ground running

Relay for Life of Matthews-Mint Hill is off to a running start in their 2013 fundraising season.
Scheduled this year for May 17 at the Park on Fairview, Relay for Life is the signature fundraising event for the American Cancer Society, an overnight event where teams share in constantly walking laps to symbolize the nonstop fight against cancer.
Local groups and businesses organize teams and raise funds to support ACS, selling products and walking laps throughout the event. 
The relay starts with a Survivor Lap, to honor cancer survivors, and a Luminaria Ceremony is held at dark to honor those that have fought cancer.
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Town boards ready for new year

The boards of commissioners from several local towns met with the Mecklenburg delegation of the North Carolina Legislators Thursday, January 3, in a called meeting to discuss legislative matters.

Town boards from Mint Hill, Cornelius, Matthews, Davidson, Pineville, and Huntersville met with members of the state legislature, including representative Bill Brawley, and senator Jeff Tarte, in a dinner meeting at Savour in Matthews.

“Try to sit with people you really don’t know too well, and encourage some conversation,” said Jim Taylor, mayor of Matthews. “I’m really pleased that everybody was able to come down here this evening, we have a good crowd—great crowd as a matter of fact.”

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Local towns discuss economic park options

Town Manager Brian Welch speaks at the October 3 called meeting of the commissioners of Mint Hill, Indian Trail, Matthews, and Stallings. PHOTO BY DEREK LACEY

On October 3, commissioners from Mint Hill, Matthews, Indian Trail, and Stallings met to discuss the potential advantages of grouping together to further economic initiatives in the community by establishing an economic partnership between the towns.

Presentations were given on how partnerships are planned, built, and managed, what advantages they offer to the communities involved, and how that could possibly benefit the four municipalities.

No action was taken at the meeting, but the idea of such a collaboration was discussed and action could be taken in the future.

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