The Kannapolis Branch Library Friends of the Library will host author Dr. Cathy Pickens as a guest speaker at its annual event and luncheon on Tuesday, April 22, at the Kannapolis Village Park Building at 11:45 a.m. Tickets are $15 each.
Pickens has been, under different names, a lawyer, business professor, university provost, clog-dancing coach, church organist and choir director and a typist.
She is the author of “Southern Fried,” “Done Gone Wrong,” “Hog Wild,” and the fourth in the Southern Fried mysteries, “Hush My Mouth,” which came out in February.
Pickens’ most profound influences on her life have been her family, faith, Nancy Drew and Perry Mason. Her fictional town, Dacus, S.C., “nestled into the foothills of the Blue Ridge,” will strike familiar chords with all Southerners, born or transplanted.
Pickens will have her books for sale and will be available to sign copies of her work after the program. If you are interested in attending the program, contact Terry Prather at the Kannapolis Branch Library, 704-920-1180 or purchase a ticket from any member of the Friends board.
Cabarrus County is making free prescription drug discount cards available under a program sponsored by the National Association of Counties (NACo) that offers average savings of 20 percent off the retail price of commonly prescribed drugs.
The cards may be used by all county residents, regardless of age, income or existing health coverage, and are accepted at 90 percent of pharmacies in the county. A national network of more than 59,000 participating retail pharmacies also will honor the NACo prescription discount card.
The NACo prescription discount card offers significant savings for the uninsured and underinsured residents of Cabarrus County. Even those who have prescription coverage can use the card to save money on drugs that are not covered by their health plan, including medications for pets. Residents do not have to be Medicare beneficiaries to be eligible for this program.
Residents will receive the best price available through this program at the pharmacy. On occasion, pharmacies will price a particular medication lower than the discount rate provided by the card. If that occurs, the consumer will receive the lower price.
There is no enrollment form, no membership fee and no restrictions or limits on frequency of use. County residents can pick up a card at a participating pharmacy and begin using it immediately. The prescription discount card is not insurance. Cardholders and their family members may use the card any time their prescriptions are not covered by insurance.
There is no cost to county taxpayers for NACo and Cabarrus County to make these prescription discount cards available to residents. Cards will be available at many pharmacist counters throughout the county. Cards also may be picked up at Cabarrus Community Health Center, Community Free Clinic, Cabarrus County Senior Center and its four LunchPlus locations, all Cabarrus County Public Libraries and Cabarrus County Department of Social Services.
For more information, log on to www.cabarruscounty. us/drugcard. County residents can call toll free 1-877-321-2652 or visit www.care mark.com/naco for assistance with the program.
The discount card program is administered by Caremark Rx Inc.
By Norris Dearmon
For the Kannapolis Citizen
Before there was a railroad in our area, there was the Old Wagon Road, which ran roughly along the ridge where the railroad now runs north and south. The exception was that the wagon road had to vary off the ridge in order to find water for the horses.
It left the ridge five times between what are now Kannapolis and Concord. The railroad was built after many problems with the rights-of-way and organization in the late 1840s. Construction began in the early 1850s.
The steepest incline for the railroad between Atlanta and Washington is between Crooks Crossing and north Kannapolis. The old steam engines would often spin their wheels on the tracks, if they were pulling a heavy load. When that happened, the engineer would release some sand on the tracks to get traction. If the sand did not work, he would back the train up and get a running start after building up a new head of steam.
As the area grew, each road built going east or west would cross the railroad. Consequently, there was a potential for accidents. I doubt there were many involving the trains and horse and wagons or buggies.
As automobiles evolved, more wrecks involving trains and cars happened. Between what is now Universal Street and what used to be the Ebenezer Road crossing, there were at least a dozen crossings. The crossings were rough, and some cars would stall on the tracks.
They could not be removed before a train came along. The only warning they had was the sound of the whistle from the train. Along the tracks were installed metal signs designating when the engineer was to blow the whistle. There may be a black dot and two slashes on the sign, which meant he would blow one short and two long blasts of the whistle. There were no bells, flashing lights or cross bars.
After World War II, the steam engines were gradually replaced with diesel engines. Then the wrecks at the crossings became more prevalent. The new engines could travel at a much faster speed and did not make the noise the steam engines made.
Adding to the problem in more recent years, the railway company began gradually raising the tracks as more rocks and gravel were placed under the cross ties. The tracks are now about two feet higher than they were in 1940. Tractor trailer trucks can no longer get across the tracks. The under carriage will get hung up on the rise of the tracks.
Since the construction of the northern and southern underpasses, many of the rail crossings have been eliminated. Where there used to be at least 12 crossings, there are now only two. The number of wrecks between trains and cars have decreased dramatically.
Unfortunately, over the years, many people have been killed on the tracks — some by accident and others by suicide. Some came about when someone was walking on the tracks and for some reason did not see or hear the train coming. It was if they were hypnotized by the sound of the train. Some were killed when they thought they could beat the train to the crossing in their cars and miss-timed it. Rail crossings will always be dangerous.
Walking the rails used to be quite a fad. Saturday or Sunday afternoon, that gave participants something to do. After all, they had no TVs, and the movies were closed.
I have heard some say, when they were younger, they could walk the rails from First Street almost to Landis without getting off the tracks. That had to be quite a balancing act.
Any activity concerning the rails is always dangerous. Keep off.
Norris Dearmon is a member of the Kannapolis History Associates and a volunteer in the Hinson History Room at the Kannapolis Branch Library.
Beware, county residents: annexation may be in your future
If the citizens who live on the Rowan County side of Kannapolis have not been paying attention, involuntary annexation is beginning to get seriously dangerous to the economic stability of the citizens affected. Yesterday it was just going up a road, now it’s growing into a Vision 2020 plan that threatens the tax burdens on thousands of Rowan County residents. Rockwell has plans to also annex 500-plus residents to keep from losing out on tax revenues that Salisbury could potentially get if the town does not act fast.
What’s next? China Grove protecting its borders? Landis? Kannapolis? Granite Quarry? Cleveland? City against city to see who can get the most tax revenue? It’s time for a change. Support and urge your county commissioners from every county to do what’s right to protect their citizens.
Being involuntarily annexed because of a loophole in a 1959 law does not give cities the right to violate the constitutional rights of its citizens, and North Carolina should rewrite or abolish the law to promote the safe welfare of its citizens throughout the state.
It’s time people stand and protect the rights that the flag stands for, or do we tell our guys and gals overseas that the very essence of what they are dying for is being violated here in the United States, especially in North Carolina? Explain to the six decades of surviving veterans that they gave of themselves to protect o ur freedoms but that the right to choose and question our elected leaders is being taken away?
Please explain this to your children, the elderly on fixed incomes, the new young homeowner trying to survive to this economy, the spouse of a veteran that finds out they have to move out of their home because a city decided that it needed more money.
— Harry Rivera
Transportation planning stays way behind need for action
Cabarrus Regional Chamber of Commerce CEO John Cox said that “I’ve said that it may take 20 years to do this....”
Let’s see, where will I be in 20 years?
Perhaps my grandchildren will be carrying my ashes to Charlotte one last time before they move away.
In 20 years, the light-rail commuter line should be a local network throughout the region and North Carolina. Connecting “Uptown,” Douglas International, UNCC, Concord, The Research Center and Salisbury. Then Harrisburg, Mt. Pleasant and Mooresvile to a hub at Concord Mills and from there to an elevated station at LMS. Looking even past that, to Raleigh, Durham, Winston-Salem and the shore.
North Carolina’s growth projection is 4.5 million in 10 years!
The “20 years” concept is brought to you by those of the two-lane I-85, I-77, I-485 planning mind set.
Roads will never catch up.
Let’s get the engineers and planners from Disney to consult our cast of characters in efficient and timely planning.
I have to go now and put $40 of gas into my 4-cylinder, ’01 Nissan to commute and pollute while waiting for the 1 million new people who’ll be here shortly.
— John H. Stanley
Letters policy: The Citizen wants to hear from you. Keep letters to 300 words or less, and please include your name, daytime phone number and address. Here’s where to send them:
Mail: Kannapolis Citizen
P.O. Box 720
Kannapolis, N.C. 28081
The Pender’s corner became a meeting place in the late 1930s because everybody had to go to buy groceries almost daily. Cars that could help housewives get the groceries home weren’t plentiful, so there was a family grocery store on almost every corner, says Norris Dearmon, well-known Kannapolis historian. This picture was made on the corner of South Main and A Street about 1938 or 1939.
Supermarkets didn’t begin to show up until after World War II. Grocery shoppers in the 1930s still had to ask clerks behind the counter to give them what they’d come for. There were no buggies. But things were changing. The family grocery stores soon began to disappear. The building which housed Pender’s in this picture was torn down to widen A Street.
For Looking Back information or to submit a picure, contact Joanie Morris at 704-932-3336 or jmorris@kannapoliscitizen, Rose Post at 704-797-4251 or email@example.com, or Norris Dearmon at 704-933-9314.
By Maggie Blackwell
For the Kannapolis Citizen
A garden is a wide open palette for the gardener. It can be as large or as small as one wants and is limited only by the size of the land and the gardener’s time to tend it well. It can be formal or wild, flowers or vegetables. The outcome is truly up to the person who plans and tends it.
Garden art is an open palette as well. When one paints a picture, he is limited by the size of the canvas and the two dimensions available. Garden art can be large or small, traditional or zany, polished or rustic. Art in the garden gives us the opportunity to express ourselves in the great outdoors.
Traditional garden art lends a more formal air to the garden and comes in the form of fountains, statuary and pottery. Eclectic garden art surely has more personality and lends a real signature to the garden.
One of the kings of eclectic garden art — who, for his own quirky reasons, does not wish to be identified by name — lives in the heart of Salisbury. If you drive down Lee Street, you can see some of his treasures: a garden gate built from garden tools, two obelisks crowned with wheelbarrows, and a delightful display of colored paintbrushes dangling from his ancient crape myrtles. This gardener has no fear of expressing himself, and his joy in expression shows in his creations. They are not bound by fear or convention.
Paulette Gobble lives on Leonard Road in Rowan County. A Master Gardener, Gobble delights in her time in the garden. The garden really flourished when her mother-in-law moved in.
“The garden gave me a break when I was caring for my mother-in-law,” she says. “And it gave her an outlet, too. She loved to walk on the porch or sit in the chair and watch me work.”
Gobble enjoys construction and uses her own power tools to produce her creations. Her garden art is lighthearted and whimsical. A small greenhouse is filled with nests, moss and lifelike birds. A rustic birdhouse is constructed from castoff hardware, collected as she and her husband renovated their farmhouse. Her garden also sports a gate constructed from garden tools, although her gate is not at all like the one on Lee Street. In fact, it’s unlikely that any two of these gates could be alike.
For those who like things to move in the garden, Ruddy Chambers of Lowder Road has just the thing. Chambers builds delightful copper sculptures that move with the slightest breeze.
“I was fishing with a buddy in 1999, and he told me I needed to go to Grove Park Inn in Asheville and see the work of a fellow up there. My buddy said it was something I could do myself. I went to see what he was talking about. The stuff was great. I came home and figured out how I could make something similar, but with my own stamp on it.”
The sculptures consist of copper “leaves” welded to a metal sleeve. The sleeve rests over a pole that is set into the ground. As the wind blows, the leaves catch the wind and spin. The copper can be shiny, brown, or have a green patina.
“I just tell folks if they want that patina to spray the copper with a little Miracle-Gro,” Chambers says. “It turns it right away.”
Copper of a different sort is the material for the Thai “spirit houses” found at Green Goat Gallery in Spencer. The little houses are woven from copper wire by artist Kate Groth.
She says of her artwork: “Spirit houses provide punctuation in the rhythm of life, marking entrance and exit, beginning and ending of the day. They adorn gardens, courtyards, balconies, shops, businesses, and roadsides. They are placed level with or higher than the owners’ eyes and are placed facing northeast or southeast. The shadows of the main building never fall on the spirit houses.” After being left outdoors, the copper takes on the lovely green patina that shows its age and its relationship with nature.
The Green Goat also offers a small fire pit, welded with zany cutouts that promise flickering designs on the patio in the night. Many new pieces offer versatility and can be used outdoors or in.
No one in Rowan County can mention garden art without recognizing the creativity of Julie Apone, who owns Carolina Lily on Kern Carlton Road. Apone’s whimsical gardens attract visitors from all over these parts, and folks just love to use her ideas.
From the castoff china plates lining her flowerbeds to the cheerful birdies atop her fence posts to her rusted Garden Lady sculpture, Apone adds touches of this and that to her gardens in the same way that a talented baker carefully decorates a cake. The end product is always breathtaking.
“That’s what gardens are all about — whimsy,” she says. “Garden art softens the garden in the winter when the flowers can’t be the focal point. And ... it might attract fairies — you never know!”
Maggie Blackwell is a freelance writer who lives in Salisbury.
By Darrell Blackwelder
For the Kannapolis Citizen
* Still time to fertilize cool season fescue/bluegrass lawns. Do not fertilize lawns after April 15.
* April 15 is considered the last frost-free day in the Piedmont. Tender annuals can be set outside. Watch the weather forecast. And be prepared to cover if a sudden late frost should occur.
* Post emergence herbicides can be applied 3 weeks after fescue germinates. Dandelions, wild garlic, wild onions, clover and other broad leaf weeds can be eliminated now.
* Tomato plants are traditionally set in mid-April, however, be prepared for a late frost. Use a starter solution of houseplant fertilizer with high phosphorus (the middle number in fertilizer) to get plants off to a good start.
* Azaleas can be pruned after bloom to July 4. Apply a slow-release fertilizer also after bloom to keep them healthy during the summer months. Azaleas set their buds in late summer, so don’t prune after July 4.
* Boxwood leaf miner is a problem in April. American boxwoods are most often affected by the yellow-orange fly. Spray with approved pesticides to kill adults and larvae.
* Continue to prune evergreen shrubs as needed.
* Black spot on rose leaves may be a problem depending on the weather. Spray regularly to keep the disease in check. Those who are opposed to pesticide usage may want to consider shrub roses.
* Aphids can also be a problem. Aphids or plant lice congregate on rose buds and tips.
* Tent caterpillars are insects with the webs full of caterpillars on cherry and other trees in the Prunus family. Physical removal is the easiest method. There are insecticides labeled for the insect. Do not burn the webs; it’s dangerous and will injure your trees.
* Voles can be a problem in heavily mulched areas. Use snap traps or baits to control this pest. Rozol is a recommended bait to control the pest.
* Fruit trees need continuous sprays with home orchard sprays to control insects and diseases. Spray thoroughly every 10-14 days.
* Daffodil leaves and leaves of other spring flowering bulbs should not be mowed but kept alive and healthy to produce flowers for next season’s flowers.
* Yard work starts at a fast pace this month. Start slow and stretch to avoid excessively sore muscles. A check-up at the family doctor may be in order for those who plan for a major workout.
* Warm season vegetables should be planted by May 10: These include tomatoes, pepper, squash, melons, okra and beans. Try new varieties.
* Pansies need to be removed and replaced with summer annuals or perennials.
* Continue to harvest cool season crops such as lettuce, cabbage, onion and broccoli; garden peas should be under way.
* Disbud spent rhododendron blooms and prune back candles to compact the plant and prevent leggy growth.
* Keep a close check for lace bugs on azaleas and rhododendron. Turn the leaves over and check for black tar-like spots. Spray underneath the leaves to keep lace bugs in check.
* Insects are out and they are hungry. Keep a close eye on tender crops. Aphids are usually the first to arrive.
* Danger of frost is over — house plants can be moved outdoors to recoup from their indoor winter home. Don’t put plants in direct sunlight.
* Ticks come out this month. Check yourself thoroughly if you work outdoors or walk in open fields or wooded areas. Mark the calendar when a tick is removed.
* Anthracnose may be a problem on shade trees such as maple, oak and sycamore. Brown spots may cause the leaves to fall prematurely. The disease will not kill the tree.
* Mulching helps conserve moisture and reduce weed growth. Apply course bark or needles not to exceed 6 inches deep.
* June is the month to renovate strawberry beds. Thin berries to12 inches apart and remove runners. Fertilize with a complete fertilizer and water during the summer. Keep the plants as weed free as possible to promote good growth and bud set in August.
* Brown patch arrives in cool-season fescue or bluegrass lawns. Mow lawns when the grass is dry. Avoid fertilizer now, especially fertilizers with high nitrogen.
* Wooly aphids arrive in early June. These insects are a problem for those who have silver maples. Control using pesticides is not practical.
* Japanese beetles hatch this month, usually after a warm summer shower. Sevin dust easily kills the critter.
* Tomatoes start blossom end rot just before ripening. Blossom end rot can best be controlled with even watering practices. Make sure to lime the soil to help reduce this physiological problem.
* Daylilies are at their peak at the end of this month. Planting continuous blooming varieties for blooms throughout the summer is becoming very popular.
* Those who wish to reseed lawns this fall should have their soil tested this month so soil amendments can be made before planting in early fall. Soil sample boxes are available from the Extension Office.
* Extra mulch around vegetables, especially tomatoes and beans, helps conserve water and reduce weeds.
* Pumpkins need to be planted early this month. Most take between 110 and 120 days to mature. Howden’s Field is a large variety that the kids enjoy.
* Honey bees are busy pollinating cucurbits and other plants. Be careful and spray insecticides late in the evening to avoid unnecessary bee kills.
* Continue to pinch back herbs and dead head roses and other flowers.
* July 4th is the peak for summer vegetables. Tomatoes, sweet corn, okra and other vegetables should be plentiful at this time. Visit the Farmers Market and take advantage of locally grown fresh produce.
* Yellow jackets can ruin outings from now until the first frost. It takes some skill to locate nests. Aerosol sprays that control wasp and hornets work well. Use these sprays at dusk. Be careful.
* Crape myrtles show their color this month. Some varieties have problems with powdery mildew.
* July is the month to take cuttings. Azalea, boxwood, holly, camellia and other evergreen shrubs can have tip cuttings taken this month. Cuttings should be 6 inches and dipped into rooting hormone powder. Place them in half sand-half Canadian peat and keep moist for about 6 weeks.
* Bermuda grass can be easily killed in July and August. Use Roundup at 2 ounces per gallon for effective control. Make sure the grass is actively growing.
* Bermuda grass can be controlled in shrubs with Vantage. It controls the weed without injury to the shrub. Follow the instructions. It takes a while for the pesticide to work.
* Water carefully early in the morning to avoid evaporation. Trickle or drip irrigation works well for valuable trees and shrubs.
Carefully evaluate your water source. A weak well is no match for constant vegetable irrigation.
* Homeowners who would like to start a new fescue lawn should kill the entire lawn with systemic herbicide such as Roundup.
* Cool season vegetables such as turnip, broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower can be direct seeded now.
* Insects are out in force. Daily spraying may be necessary to control some insect pests.
* Fertilize shrubs early in the month for the last time until the spring.
* Azaleas set their blooms during late July and August. Make sure the shrubs receive ample water.
* Fertilize strawberries with a complete fertilizer (10-10-10) about 2∏ pounds per 100 feet or row.
* Late vegetables can be planted now. Late tomatoes, green beans and squash are perfect for those who want fall vegetables.
* Keep vegetables, flowers and other items healthy to enter in the Rowan County Fair.
* Spray stone fruits such as peach, cherry and plum for peach tree borers this month.
* Black, orange-striped oak caterpillars will literally strip the leaves from oak trees and some other tree species. This happens late in the summer and the tree is generally unaffected by the overactive caterpillar.
* Mums are available at the end of this month. Use these as accents around the home and garden.
* Labor Day is an excellent time to reseed and apply fall fertilizer for cool season lawns. A narrow window of opportunity exists for seeding. The earlier in September lawns are seeded, the stronger and better established the lawn becomes before winter.
* Pre-emergence herbicides can be applied to lawns when the temperatures begin to dip into the 50s to prevent chickweed and annual bluegrass.
* Cool season lawns can be core-aerated this month.
* Maples should be pruned in September when the leaves are still there to prevent excessive bleeding.
* Fall webworms make a mess in some trees, especially pecan, sourwood and hickory. These do not kill the tree only a nuisance.
* Those suffering from garden burn-out should remove garden debris, and turn stubble under. Plant a cover crop of wheat or clover for next springs’ vegetable garden.
* Pumpkins and winter squash can be harvested this month before frost after the vines dry up. Avoid bruising or scratching fruit while harvesting. Wipe the fruit with 1 part bleach and 10 parts water to kill bacteria and fungi. This allows the vegetables to last until Halloween.
* The Rowan County Fair is the third week of September. Enter crops, produce and flowers and show off your handiwork.
Darrell Blackwelder is an extension agent with the NC Cooperative Extension Service. He can be reached at 704-213-8970.
By Cathy Elliott
Contributing NASCAR columnist
It gets a little upsetting at times, when one of NASCAR’s rare “off” weekends rolls around, to hear the inevitable lament, “Aw, man, there’s no race this weekend.”
Let’s correct that statement right off the bat, because it is inaccurate. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series does not compete every week, but even when the nation’s premier racing series is enjoying a couple of rare and well-deserved days off, there is plenty of action for fans to enjoy and some serious stargazing to be done.
Every off weekend for the Sprint Cup Series in 2008, beginning with this past weekend and ending in mid-July, features a NASCAR Nationwide Series race.
The Nationwide Series, often described as “NASCAR’s Triple-A,” is at its core a proving ground for drivers looking to move up to the top tier of racing.
In NASCAR, of course, this lofty height is the Sprint Cup Series. In baseball, it is the major leagues, described by Kevin Costner’s Crash Davis character in the movie “Bull Durham” as “the show”. (“Bull Durham” generated renewed national interest in and enthusiasm for minor league baseball when it was released in 1988, and is considered one of the best sports movies of all time.)
“You know, you never handle your luggage in the show; somebody else carries your bags ... You hit white balls for batting practice, the ballparks are like cathedrals, the hotels all have room service ...” says Davis to one of his Durham Bulls teammates.
I’ll admit that does sound a lot like the Sprint Cup Series. The finest equipment is always in use; the venues are some of the largest and grandest in all of sports. And I have personally never seen Jeff Gordon schlepping his suitcase up the stairway at any Speedway Slumberland location, although I’m not saying he wouldn’t be willing to do that, if the need ever arose. Which is unlikely.
But America’s second-most popular form of motorsports, despite slightly different equipment and smaller paychecks, isn’t necessarily second best in the eyes of fans. Many actually prefer it to Cup racing.
At minor league parks, things tend to be more laid-back. There are occasional star-sightings, usually players from the big leagues trying to recover from an injury, or from a slump, but for the most part, it’s a very casual environment.
At a Nationwide Series event, things are looser. The races (and the television broadcasts) are shorter, and therefore produce longer periods of intense action.
An early mistake in a 500-mile event can sometimes be overcome, but in a shorter event competitors must race their hardest from green flag to checkered, and the margin for error is much slimmer.
Five hundred mile races can last four or more hours, but Nationwide Series events run about half that long. They are perfect for families with small children, who bring short attention spans to the track along with their sippy cups.
Then there are the players. Many of the two series’ competitors don’t just appear to be identical; they really are.
Since the early days of the Nationwide Series, many Cup drivers have used their days off to compete there, for a number of different reasons--to gain more “seat time”, for example, or to familiarize themselves with a particular track. Some just want to race. It is their hobby as well as their job.
In recent years, those claiming that Cup Series drivers racing in the Nationwide Series take opportunities away from the series regulars, who are often younger and less experienced, have criticized this practice. While there may be some validity in this view, the fact remains that the Cup superstars do attract large crowds and generate a tremendous amount of fan interest, ultimately drawing more attention to the lesser-known series and making more money for the venues.
This is not specific to NASCAR, by any means. If you don’t believe it, ask the manager of the Birmingham Barons how game attendance was affected when a former basketball player by the name of Michael Jordan decided to try his hand at minor league baseball for a season or two. Then ask the manager if he considered that a bad thing. When he picks himself up off the floor and finally stops laughing, I’m thinking he’ll tell you he liked it. A lot.
As Tom Hanks once stated so succinctly on the silver screen, “There’s no crying in baseball”. (Okay, different movie, but it’s still a cool line.)
The same applies to NASCAR. Let’s not bemoan the absence of the Sprint Cup Series during its breaks -- it always comes back -- and settle in for a wild ride with the Nationwide Series, during “on” weekends as well as “off” ones.
In NASCAR, there is no such thing as an “off” weekend. It’s always Game On.
Last Tuesday’s public forum on the future of the N.C. 3 corridor, sponsored by the Centralina Council of Governments, drew about 120 people to Bethpage Presbyterian Church.
Even though most local elected officials stayed away, residents brought up concerns about water restrictions, public transportation, utility connections and traffic problems.
Not all of those problems were focused on the meeting’s central issue, the future of land along N.C. 3. But the residents’ comments reflected a frustration with what many see as unbridled growth in the area.
Bill Duston of the Centralina Council moderated the meeting. He had to remind residents several times that its purpose was to gather feedback for lawmakers.
“This is not a debate,” Duston said. “There are no right or wrong opinions here.”
All spoken and written comments from the meeting, as well as a similar one held in Mooresville, will go to a steering committee appointed by governments who control zoning along N.C. 3: the Kannapolis and Mooresville city councils and Iredell and Cabarrus county commissioners.
That steering committee will issue a report in several months meant to guide those governments in making decisions about land use, zoning and improvements to roads and utilities.
Residents were not required to identify themselves before speaking as they are at many government meetings. A number of people who spoke at the forum declined to give their names to The Citizen afterward.
But many who spoke said they would like to limit development and maintain the corridor’s rural character.
Several residents spoke in favor of keeping N.C. 3 as a two-lane road outside of Kannapolis. A project to widen the road to four lanes from the city center to its intersection with Kannapolis Parkway is in the works.
But others said they would like to see the road widened further toward Mooresville to alleviate traffic concerns. Two suggested adding stoplights to the road near Kannapolis.
One resident said he’d like to see a bus line use the corridor to transport residents between Kannapolis and Mooresville using N.C. 3, citing the high cost of fuel.
But despite these suggestions, some residents had a negative outlook at the meeting’s close.
“It doesn’t matter what we said tonight. They’re going to do what they want to do,” said Connie Goodman. “And it’s going to benefit some people and hurt others.”
Goodman and her husband own 75 acres off N.C. 3, but it lies within a protected watershed area where development is limited.
Due to those restrictions, she said, the Goodmans won’t be able to benefit as much by selling or developing their land even if property values adjacent to them rise.
Peggy Austin, who also lives off N.C. 3, spoke of the traffic congestion resulting from development along N.C. 73 nearby, where industrial and heavy commercial use clog the roadway.
“I avoid 73 at all costs now,” Austin said.
“I would love to see it (N.C. 3) stay two lanes and as it is,” she said, but added that the road was already being affected by people who cut through the area.
At the close of the meeting, Duston provided his e-mail address — bduston@centralina. org — as an avenue for those who want to stay involved and be informed about upcoming steering committee meetings.
He also encouraged residents to stay in touch with their elected officials and to watch newspapers and roadsides for any notices of rezoning, which are the true sign of changes to come.
“You can be as informed as you want to be,” Duston said.
First Presbyterian Church in Kannapolis will host a community symposium on “Living as Christians in a World of Many Religions” on Wednesday evenings, April 2-16. The presentations will be in the church’s sanctuary, each beginning at 6:30 p.m., and will be led by faculty from Davidson College. The series will address questions such as: What does the Bible say about relating to those of other religions? Does the Bible legitimize an open and accepting attitude toward other religions? What do those of other faiths really believe? All sessions are free and open to the public.
Kannapolis is becoming more pluralistic. Although we are in the midst of the “Bible Belt,” Christianity is no longer the only religion in town. A Jewish congregation has formed in Cabarrus County. Muslim, and Buddhist faiths are among us. As the North Carolina Research Campus begins to operate, it will attract scientists from all over the world, further diversifying the religious demographic of our community.
The weekly schedule of topics includes:
• April 2 — “A Historical Look at Christianity and Judaism” by Dr. Gregory Snyder. Dr. Snyder will suggest that the two were almost indistinguishable in the beginning, and by understanding this we need to rethink our view of Judaism.
• April 9 — “An Introduction to Hinduism and Islam” by Dr. William Mahony. This will be a brief introduction to two of the world religions becoming more prevalent in the community.
• April 16 — “What the Bible Says About Other Religions” by Snyder. This session will look at what the Christian scriptures offer about how to relate to other religions.
Snyder is an associate professor of religion at Davidson College, where he specializes in early Christianity and the religious milieu of the world of the early church. Mahony is professor of religion and chair of the department of religion at Davidson. He specializes in Eastern religions and Islam.
The presentations are free of charge. Children’s programs and a nursery will be available at the same time. An optional fellowship supper is served in the Fellowship Hall at 5:45 p.m., with a suggested donation of $5. Please call 704-938-4623 or visit www.FirstPresb.org for additional information.
North Kannapolis United Methodist Church is hosting its annual fundraiser “Get Your Bock Bock at the Rock,” on Saturday, April 12.
The church will be selling Port-a-Pit barbecued chicken from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for $7 a plate. The meal includes half a chicken, baked beans, slaw and a roll.
North Kannapolis United Methodist Church’s Family Life Center is located at 1307 N. Main St., across from Brothers Tire in Kannapolis.
On Sunday, April 6, at 3:30 p.m., the community is invited to the first annual Lorene Honeycutt Memorial Organ Concert to be held at Trinity United Methodist Church in Kannapolis.
Former piano and organ students of Honeycutt are encouraged to attend and be recognized. The guest organist for the free concert will be Adam Micah Ward who has served as the organist and choirmaster at First United Methodist Church of Salisbury for 10 years. Ward received bachelor and master of music degrees in organ performance from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He will complete the doctor of musical arts in organ performance at UNCG in May 2009.
For more information about the concert you may call Jon Hutchinson at 704-933-0660.
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