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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News Notes & Happenings

Commission meeting cancelled

There will not be a meeting of the Mint Hill Board of Commissioners October 11, due to lack of a quorum available for attendance. Items on the October 11 agenda will most likely be considered at the next regularly scheduled board meeting October 25.

Anti-Bullying

Great Clips Salon is teaming up with local police, schools, and CBS Radio on a Bully Prevention Program. Pledge forms can be found at all of the 65 local Great Clips salons or on CBS Charlotte Radio’s website. The program runs from October 1 through December 31. Student pledges will be counted toward a CBS Radio pep rally, with the elementary, middle, and high schools with the highest percentage receiving pep rallies.

Check presentation

The Fireman’s Fund will present a check to MHVFD on Wednesday, October 17, at 5 pm, at the Mint Hill Volunteer Fire Department. The check is grant money that will be used to purchase thermal imaging cameras. Light dinner and training on the new equipment will follow the presentation. The Mayor, Commissioners, Town Manager, and Town Clerk have been invited to attend along with Fire De- partment Members.

Paddle Tennis

There will be a paddle tennis demonstration, free and open to the public Sunday, October 14 at the park on Wilgrove at 7750 Jim Harper Lane in Mint Hill. The purpose is to introduce the game of paddle tennis to the Charlotte area and garner support for a proposal to build paddle tennis courts at the Park on Wilgrove, which will be presented to the Town of Mint Hill.

Open House

Clear Creek Animal Hospital will be hosting an open house October 12 from 12-3 pm, at their location, 9301 Albemarle Road. The activities will include demonstrations and a dog show. For more information, contact Nina at 704-537-8405.

Golf Tournament

The Mint Hill American Legion is hosting a gold tournament Monday, October 29 at 9 am at Old Sycamore. The cost is $400 per team withe $100 hole sponsors. Contact Steve Baucom at 704-507-1526 or Bryan Bunn at 704-264-9273 for more information. Register online at www.mhlegion.com.

Daphne’s grand opening

Daphne’s Simply Southern Bakery is celebrating the grand opening of their new location at 7609 Matthews-Mint Hill Road Friday, October 19. There will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 3 pm with light refreshments and baked goods available until 9 pm.

Party in Pink

Fit You Studios is hosting “Susan G Komen Party in Pink” Zumba event, Saturday, October 13, from 10 am to 1 pm at 8400 Fairview Road. Price is $10 per person. For information, call Brittany Kjos at 704-779-6173.

Indy Hunger Drive

The Independence High School AIS program is participating in the Student Hunger Drive of the Carolinas, compet- ing with 19 school to see who can donate the most canned food to the Second Harvest Food Bank. The campaign lasts until November 16, and donations can be sent in with an Independence student or dropped off at the donation barrel in the 400 building.

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Daphne’s Bakery moves to new home

Daphnes1

The new home of Daphne’s Simply Southern Bakery on Matthews-Mint Hill Road is ready to serve treats to the Mint Hill com- munity. PHOTOS BY DEREK LACEY

Daphne’s Simply Southern Bakery, which has been serving confections from their location in the McEwen shopping Center at 11211 Lawyers Road since 2008, will be starting a new tradition at 7609 Matthews-Mint Hill Road.

Equipment and supplies were moved to the new location and set up Monday and Tuesday, and Daphne’s was serving treats from their new home by Wednesday, October 10.

Since buying the building in April of this year, Daphne’s has been gearing up to move the operation to the new building, originally constructed as a bank.

Adding a wall here, removing a wall there, installing pink floors and turning a vault into a pantry, the building eventually began to look more like a bakery than a bank.

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Daphne’s Grand Opening postponed

Daphne’s Bakery in Mint Hill is postponing the grand opening of their new location at 7609 Matthews-Mint Hill Road until Fri. October 19.  

The grand opening was previously scheduled for Fri. October 12, 3-9 pm, with a ribbon-cutting and light refreshments.

For more info, see the Daphne’s Bakery Facebook page at (www.facebook.com/daphnesbakery)

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Madness brings out crowd

The parade, concerts, food, and rides are packed away, and downtown Mint Hill is back to normal, but last weekend, Madness was in full swing, flooding the streets with parade floats, vendors, food, and patrons.

This year’s Madness saw a notable increase in attendance, with record numbers for the Lions Club 5k run and an especially long parade.

“We had a real good event this year, it seemed like there was more thorough planning,” said Bob Lucas, member of the Camber of Commerce Board of Directors. “Certainly the people that visited expressed their appreciation for everything that went on, our vendors developed a lot of contacts in the community, and fireworks came off without a hitch.”

The chamber won’t know their monetary return on the event for a few weeks, when invoices are reported and the Chamber can evaluate the money generated, but so far, reviews from people involved have been positive.

“I was talking to some of my partners in the chamber and we have heard nothing but good reviews—our ride partner had a terrific event, our food vendors had a terrific event,” Lucas said.

Saturday morning, the parade made it all the way through the mile-long route rain-free and with more marchers than usual.

“It’s the first time that anybody can remember there were that many people lined on the street on either side of 51,” Ferretti said. “I think it’s the most we’ve had out there.”

Lucas also noted this year’s larger parade.

“It was really interesting to stand out on Hwy. 51 and look from the intersection of Lawyers Road and look both ways and see the parade lined up as far as you can see,” said Lucas.

Prior to the parade, the Lions Club 5k race drew plenty of attention on its own, with record number of runners.

“The Lions’ 5k race, they were over the top,” Ferretti said. “There was something like 369 registered runners for the race, the most that we’ve ever had.”

The only problem this year was a short rain shower that lasted about an hour, which hardly put a dent in the festivities.

“The only thing is we had that little shower in the middle of the afternoon, but that was out of our control,” Lucas said, “But seemed like everyone hung in there with us and once we looked off to the west, we were able to see some blue sky and wound up, we had a terrific evening.”

Looking to 2013, the Chamber has to rethink the general layout of the event, because the old town hall will be converted to the police station, presenting a

new set of logistical challenges.

“The Chamber’s going to sit down with the mayor and the chief of police and the fire department and everybody that was involved,” Ferretti said.

That conversation should happen by February or March of 2013, with the main concerns being where to put the events and rides that, next year, won’t be able to be located in the same area.

Overall, the event was considered a huge success by the Chamber, Ferretti and Lucas saying that everyone they spoke to gave positive feedback and showed intentions to be back for 2013.

“I think it was fantastic, actually,” Ferretti said. “I’m getting tons of positive feedback, whether it be email, text, or phone calls, I think that it was great this year.”

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Grassroots meteorologist provides Mint Hill forecast

The brain of the Mint Hill weather station: the solar-powered black and white cylinders stand five feet from the ground, measuring temperature, humidity, air pressure, and rain, transmitting data every three seconds, 24 hours a day. PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRIS MULLIS

Mint Hill is home to a weather station that provides a large amount of weather data at the local level. A 34-foot pole stands just a few miles from downtown, measuring temperature, humidity, air pressure, rain, and light, while transmitting data every three seconds to be uploaded to MintHillWeather.com.

The weather station is the solo project of Mint Hill resident Chris Mullis, who grew up in Charlotte, being introduced to the world of science through the Charlotte Amateur Astronomers Club. His passion for astronomy led him to a doctorate degree at the University of Hawaii.

Astronomers develop a relationship with the weather, as they depend on clear skies for observations. They also share with meteorologists the fundamentals of data collecting as scientists. So it was easy for Mullis to cross over to the meteorological world a couple months ago when he constructed his weather station and built his website.

Alongside dozens of charts, graphs, and columns of information are visual aides. The live sky camera, daily videos, and blog illustrating phenomena of the sky provide fascinating visuals from a local perspective. Visitors can see a full-screen lightning flash from last Saturday morning, a meteor from the August 12 Perseid shower, or simply watch the sky grow brighter from the rising sun any given day.

“Visual information is the most powerful type of information,” explained Mullis. “Science begins with observation, and what better way to question the natural world than by looking at it.”

His inspiration for this latest scientific endeavor was in large part his children. As they progress through their education, Mullis wants to keep their curiosities alive. He talks to classrooms of young children about astronomy and meteorology, hoping to instill the importance of questions.

“I’m a grassroots agitator for science education and asking why and questioning the simple stuff; pausing to look and think, ‘why is that?’ I’m taking this weather science and using it as a reason to have a conversation about science and technology. I’m not trying to generate new meteorologists or new astronomers, I’m trying to get kids and citizens to think about science and technology.”

For that reason, he regularly takes out the telescope at home for his children. For special astronomical occasions, the neighborhood kids visit for observations.

MintHillWeather.com was not created just as a tool for teaching science. It’s a useful site for anyone wanting the local weather forecast. Radar images come from Weather Underground in exchange for the high quality data Mullis collects. Current conditions and forecasts provide the casual weather-watcher with the information they need to make the day’s or week’s plans. Scrolling down the home page, more detailed information can be found like precipitation and the UV index, useful for gardeners.

Visitors can also find advisories and astronomical observation charts. The current solar image is always available, illustrating the mind-blowing size of the sun (look for the Earth and Jupiter scale markers). Mint Hill residents can obtain information from the website in a variety of convenient ways. The website is easy to remember and navigate. Following the forecast on Twitter (twitter.com/MintHillWeather) provides live weather conditions on the hour every hour. The Facebook (facebook.com/MintHillWeather) page posts current conditions and the forecast every morning and afternoon. The site also has a mobile version for smart phone use.

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