Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Gerald Wallace to Get Some Burn

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/30/2010 No comments
Charlotte Bobcats star Gerald Wallace is appearing on Jim Rome Is Burning today at 4:30 p.m. on ESPN. I'm assuming Wallace will appear in the "Alone With Rome" segment, and I'm guessing Rome will ask him questions about the Bobcats' run for the playoffs and about Michael Jordan being the new team owner. And I'm expecting to laugh as Rome uses his overused, and in many cases played out, slang to describe Wallace's game. "This guy is jacked. I mean, there aren't many players in the league who are willing to sacrifice their own dome, diving for the rock, taking it to your grill like G-Force." LOL!

This is the second time in a week that a Charlotte b-ball star is appearing on Rome's show. Charlotte native turned Davidson star turned Golden State Warrior Stephen Curry was on the show last week as Rome praised him for his great play as an NBA rookie. Click here to see that seven-minute segment.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Apple is notoriously secret and dramatic in how it unveils new products and company news. There's always buzz and rumors preceding company announcements, but no one ever really seems to know the full details until Apple is ready to tell us. The iPad seemed to come from out of nowhere when it was announced two months ago (it goes on sale to the public Saturday, by the way). This same kind of mystery is still surrounding Apple's East Coast data center, which has been under construction in Maiden, North Carolina since last summer. Maiden is a small town about 45 minutes northwest of Charlotte.

State officials practically bet away the farm to land Apple's server farm, giving the company an unprecedented number of tax breaks for the promise of jobs and the allure of the Apple brand. Well, last week, Apple posted 10 jobs for the data center in Maiden, most of which are technician positions. The Associated Press was among the first to break the news, and even though Apple officials wouldn't comment, many believe this signals that the $1 billion, 500,000-square-foot operation is nearing completion.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Soccer Fan Gets Mollywhopped

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/26/2010 No comments
You probably thought you wouldn't see any tackling at Bank of America Stadium until the Carolina Panthers preseason starts in August. Well, as you probably are aware, there was an international soccer match played here Wednesday. About 65,000 fans filled Bank of America Stadium to watch Mexico vs. Iceland.

One fan got a little too amped up and decided to run onto the field. A security guy tackled him in a way that's going to make us really miss Julius Peppers. See the YouTube clip below.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Read About It: Kazba

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/25/2010 No comments
Kazba opened at the EpiCentre about three months ago. It still has the appeal of being the new kid on the block, but it's also starting to settle in nicely as another great nightlife option. It recently added ladies night on Fridays, and now that the weather is warming up, look for them to open the sliding glass doors to the patio, offering a great view of the EpiCentre and the Uptown skyline.

Brad Patton Photography

There's not much info currently on Kazba's website, but luckily you can read about the nightclub in the article I wrote in the April issue of Charlotte magazine by clicking here.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Alive After Five Returns April 8

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/23/2010 No comments
When spring arrives in Charlotte, that means Alive After Five isn't far behind. The city’s largest weekly after-work event kicks off its tenth year April 8 at 5 p.m. Liquid Pleasure, a North Carolina-based band that plays everything from R&B, Motown, and funk to oldies, disco, and modern dance classics, will be the evening's entertainment to kick off the season.

In honor of its original home for eight years, Alive After Five will be held at the Wachovia Plaza (301 South Tryon St.) throughout April. Then beginning May 6, the popular Thursday event will return to the Pavilion at EpiCentre (210 E. Trade St.), which became its home last year. The EpiCentre--and its numerous bars and nightclubs--will also host the official Alive After Five After Party every Thursday at 9 p.m. beginning April 8.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Michael Jordan's Open Letter to Charlotte

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/22/2010 No comments
New Charlotte Bobcats majority owner Michael Jordan wrote an open letter to Charlotte and it was published inside of an advertisement that ran in The Charlotte Observer yesterday. In this letter, Jordan has chosen the right words. And by now owning 80 percent of the Bobcats after officially buying majority ownership from Bob Johnson last week, he has clearly put his money ($275 million) where his mouth is. It's time for Charlotte and this city's basketball fans to support MJ and this NBA franchise. But more on that later...

Click on the image below to see Jordan's letter.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Help Charlotte's Population Get Counted

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/21/2010 No comments
"We can't move forward until you mail it back." Just about everyone has heard that slogan recently on TV or radio commercials for the 2010 U.S. Census. But you'd be surprised at the large number of people who don't mail back the census form.

On Thursday evening, I attended a meeting held by the U.S Census and the Urban League of Central Carolinas that asked organizations to "adopt" Charlotte neighborhoods that had a low response rate during the last census. Organizations and volunteers who adopt one of the "hard-to-count" areas will hold an event on national "March to the Mailbox Day," which is April 10, to encourage their neighbors to return their census form if they haven't already done so.

Hard-to-count areas in Charlotte are made up largely of minority and low-income populations and include neighborhoods along Beatties Ford, Sugar Creek, and Billingsley roads. Figures from the 2000 Census show that nationwide 628,000 blacks were not counted and the non-Hispanic white population was double-counted by approximately 2.2 million.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Events for the Weekend: March 19-21

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/19/2010 No comments
Your best weekend list for parties, nightlife, social, and cultural events in Charlotte. This isn’t intended to be a complete list of everything that's going on, but instead are the events GPT recommends. Use contact/website info listed to verify event details.

Friday, March 19

Artists-in-Residence and Affiliate Artists Closing Reception
This event celebrates the end of the residency period for both the Winter 2010 Artists-in-Residence and 11-Month Affiliate Artists. Music begins at 8 p.m. in the sculpture studio. Cash bar. 6-11 p.m. McColl Center for Visual Art, 721 N. Tryon St. www.mccollcenter.org.

Amped 4-A-Cure Charlotte Bar Crawl
Help support cancer research while visiting several of Uptown’s most popular bars, including Tilt, Whisky River, Buckhead Saloon, Alleycat, and The Forum. Music, mechanical bulls, beer pong, and DJs will keep you entertained, along with plenty of drink specials. Presented by Amped 4-A-Cure (www.amped4acure.org). 7 p.m.-2 a.m. $5. Starts at Tilt, 127 W. Trade St. uptownbarcrawl.eventbrite.com.

5 on 5 Challenge
This artistic concept is similar to a blind date experience. The names of five eclectic visual artists have been selected to partner with five performing artists. None of the participants have worked together prior to this challenge. Presented by Create Don’t Hate Productions. 8 p.m. Donations accepted. Story Slam, 1401 Central Ave. www.storyslamcharlotte.com.

I’ve Got a Feva
Popular Chicago DJ Justin Long brings his mix of house dance music to one of Charlotte’s trendiest lounges. 9 p.m. $10. Dharma Lounge, 1440 S. Tryon St., Suite 105 (entrance faces West Summit Ave). www.dharmacharlotte.com.

Blush Fridays
The new weekly Ladies Night series continues at the EpiCentre’s new VIP lounge. Salon Tribeca is the sponsor this week and will be giving away prizes and discounts. Music by DJ RWONZ; half-price martinis. 9 p.m. Ladies free. www.kazbacharlotte.com.

Pure Fridays—Idris Elba’s Ladies Night Edition
The talented actor and music head hosts this party. There will also be casting for a video shoot. Music by DJ Shogun. 10 p.m. Cost varies; members and ladies free before 11:30 p.m. Club 935, 935 S. Summit Ave. www.club935.com.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Kendra James Isn't So 'Bad'

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/16/2010 No comments
I interviewed Charlotte native and Bad Girls Club star Kendra James last week as she was home for a few days while on spring break. You can read the results of that interview in the article I wrote ("Catching up with Bad Girl Kendra James") in the March 17-23 issue of Creative Loafing, which is online now and hitting newsstands over the next day. James is getting an extension on her reality TV shelf life because as season four of Bad Girls Club is finishing up with part one of a two-part reunion show tonight at 10 p.m. on Oxygen, the new spinoff show, Love Games: Bad Girls Need Love Too, is airing immediately following and stars James alongside two BGC cast members from past seasons.

In the Creative Loafing article, you can read about the new dating show as well as how James handles the love and the hate she gets from TV viewers who enjoy watching the drama-filled Bad Girls Club as much as they like to diss the girls who are on it.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Rielle Hunter Wants This Attention

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/15/2010 No comments
The 24-hour cable news shows reported on the hour every hour today on the new GQ magazine interview and pictorial featuring Rielle Hunter. The story, "Hello, America, My Name Is Rielle Hunter," appears in GQ's April issue and it was posted online today. Since this was Hunter's first time speaking publicly about John Edwards since he claimed paternity for their daughter, it quickly became a hot topic. And that's exactly what Hunter wanted.

Since Edwards has admitted he's the father--and because he's no longer a political figure--the interest in the scandal would've begun to wane. The paparazzi and the tabloids would have begun to go away. But that's not what Hunter wants. Why else would she do an interview with one of the largest magazines in the world and allow them to photograph her scantily clad in her Charlotte home?

Here's an opportunity to party tonight (yes, on a Monday night) and hear some great music via a DJ battle. Red Bull Thre3Style is a DJ competition that's traveling from city to city in search of the best DJs, and tonight it's in Charlotte to put the crown on the Queen City's best mix master. The legendary DJ Jazzy Jeff will be in the house (he was also just in town a couple of weeks ago rocking a party during CIAA) to help judge the competition and he'll perform a set after.

There are eight DJs who will be battling it out, some of whom you should recognize from handling the turntable duties at some of Charlotte's biggest parties and most popular nightclubs: DJ Soden, Frenzy, DJ R Wonz, DJ A-Huf, Ciprian, Merlin, SPCLGST, and DJ Forge. Each DJ will have 15 minutes to mix three different genres of music and win over the judges and the crowd. They'll be judged on song selections, creativity, skill, swagger, and audience reaction.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Brooklyn Decker's Threesome...Cover

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/12/2010 No comments
A month after Charlotte (Matthews) native Brooklyn Decker graced the cover of the legendary Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue, she's preparing for her next big magazine cover. Women's Wear Daily is reporting that Decker and fellow models Alessandra Ambrosio and Crystal Renn were photographed recently on the Caribbean island for the cover of the June issue of Glamour. Below is a photo of the hot trio that Decker posted on Twitter.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Audition if You Think You're 'TUF'

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/10/2010 No comments
The Ultimate Fighting Championship is coming to Charlotte on March 31 as Kenny Florian battles Takanori Gomi at Bojangles' Coliseum. Tickets went on sale about a month ago for the event, which will air on Spike TV, and today the UFC announced an extra treat for Charlotte. The UFC and Spike TV will hold open call tryouts for The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) season 12 on April 1, the day after the fight.

TUF is a reality show in which some of the best up-and-coming mixed martial artists are trained by professionals and beat each other's brains out in hopes of being crowned The Ultimate Fighter. The tryouts will be in search of lightweights (155 pounds) and light heavyweights (205 pounds), and will be attended by UFC president Dana White and the show's producers.

If you enjoy kicking--and being kicked--in the head, this could be just for you. But also note that the requirements are that you must have had at least three professional fights to be considered.

TUF 12 is scheduled to premiere on Spike TV in September. Season 11, which recently wrapped production, premieres March 31 and will air 12 episodes.

TUF 12 Open Call Tryouts:
Thursday, April 1
Registration begins at 8 a.m.
Omni Charlotte Hotel
Grand Ballroom
132 E. Trade Street

Click here for more information and to download the application.

World’s Largest Pub Crawl on Saturday

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/10/2010 No comments
St. Patrick's Day is next Wednesday, but a lot of the partying (and drinking) will be going on this weekend. For Charlotte, it gets no bigger (and drunker) than Rich and Bennett's Annual St. Patrick's Day Pub Crawl, taking place on Saturday. Now in its tenth year, the event has grown to massive proportions. For just $20, you're given an official pub crawl T-shirt and access to more than 20 Uptown bars and nightclubs.

Put on by RockHouse Events, last year's pub crawl drew nearly 5,000 people (despite the rain), some who traveled from other parts of the country. The pub crawl was even filmed for an episode of the Travel Channel's Extreme Wild Parties. See the video clip of the episode below.

This year there are 25 participating bars, including Buckhead Saloon, Cosmos Café, BAR Charlotte, Dixie's Tavern, Blackfinn, Madison's, Whiskey River, and many more. You can buy tickets online for $25, or you can save five bucks and buy them in person at Strike City today or Buckhead Saloon tomorrow, both places 6-8 p.m. The price is $30 the day of. Visit www.rockhouseevents.com/stpatricksdaypubcrawl for more details.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Julius Peppers Pops Bottles

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/08/2010 No comments
Just hours after leaving the Carolina Panthers and signing a mega contract with the Chicago Bears on Friday, Julius Peppers celebrated into the wee hours of Saturday morning at Chicago nightclub Crescendo. Numerous reports say the $91 million man ordered 25 bottles of Perrier Jouet Fleur de Champagne--at $350 a bottle--and had them distributed to the club goers. And Peppers went even higher on the shelf for him and his two friends, buying them each a bottle of Ace of Spades Rose at $3,000 apiece. When it was all said and done, he'd spent over 20-grand at the bar. I don't think anyone in Charlotte would accuse Peppers of big pimpin' or ballin' out of control (even though he made almost $17 million here last year), but perhaps he's becoming a new man in Chi-Town--more Pep in his step.

See video below of the bottle popping.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Thanks for the Memories, Jake

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/05/2010 No comments

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Fashion Industry on Full Display Thursday

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/03/2010 No comments
For all of you lovers of fashion, whether it be as an aspiring model or designer, shopaholic, or person who simply likes to keep up with the latest trends, this Thursday in Charlotte will be a great day for you. There are three noteworthy fashion events going on tomorrow.

The Fashion Rules! Party
Enjoy fashion tips, a fashion show led by Charlotte magazine's Style Editor Sarah Crosland and Style Writer Jenn Grabenstetter, The Fashion Rules! Game hosted by Rachel Sutherland, cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, and more. 6-9 p.m. Free but RSVP required (rsvpcharlotte@neimanmarcus.com). Neiman Marcus (use Men’s Entrance located off Barclay Downs Road), SouthPark Mall, 4400 Sharon Rd. Click here for more info.

Fashion Marketing Industry Night
Mix and mingle with a fashionable audience at this second Pre-Charlotte NC Fashion Week Mixer (the third annual Charlotte NC Fashion Week will be held September 23-25). Hosted by the CNCFW Advisory Board. All designers, models, stylists, photographers, and other industry professionals are invited. 6:30 p.m. Free, but donations are appreciated. RSVP at rsvp@charlottencfashionweek.com. Mez, inside the EpiCentre, 210 E. Trade St. www.charlottencfashionweek.com.

Wilhelmina Evolution Models Party
They'll be celebrating the agency's accomplishments and talent (Wilhelmina has a Charlotte office). And there will also be a search for new models and actors, with a winner receiving a contract that night. 10 p.m. Get on the guest list if you can: rsvp@buttercharlotte.com. Butter NC, inside the NC Music Factory, 950 Seaboard St. www.wilhelminatalent.com, www.buttercharlotte.com.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Michael Jordan's Horse Playing

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/02/2010 1 comment
Less than three days after inking a deal to become majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, Michael Jordan engaged in a game of H-O-R-S-E with rookie Gerald Henderson. The Bobcats were holding a shootaround early yesterday before their night game against the Dallas Mavericks. Jordan is said to have been joking on Henderson as he often does because Henderson is from Duke. That joking turned to trash talking, which led to the game of H-O-R-S-E. Henderson beat Jordan, and the competitive former Number 23 wanted a rematch, of which Henderson also won.

This little contest made it onto several of the sports news shows and blogs as if it is surprising that a 22-year-old NBA rookie would beat a 47-year-old retired legend. But it just goes to show that many people still see MJ as being invincible. Below are videos of the two H-O-R-S-E matches.

Jordan was also courtside during the Bobcats' home game last night. Unfortunately, the team lost, but Jordan's presence might just please some of the naysayers. Ever since talk surfaced about Jordan trying to buy the team, the most popular comment made from almost anyone who has offered an opinion is that they hope Jordan won't be an absentee owner like Bob Johnson.

Monday, March 1, 2010

GPT Video: En Vogue Is Still in Vogue

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 3/01/2010 No comments
Here's a snippet of En Vogue's performance I caught before Saturday's CIAA Championship games at Time Warner Cable Arena. The members of the popular 1990s R&B group sound as good as they did when they were dropping songs like "Hold On" and "Giving Him Something He Can Feel." And now each in their 40s, they look good enough to give some of these young women a run for their money (I remember thinking that when Alicia Keys brought them on stage during the 2008 BET Awards).

A couple of friends and I were taking in the Saturday festivities that were going on in Charlotte surrounding the CIAA Basketball Tournament. The crowds on the light rail (which we rode from South End) and throughout the streets of Uptown were huge as were expected. After hitting up a day party, I headed to the arena while my friends went to the EpiCentre. When I went to later meet them at the EpiCentre around 6 p.m., I captured this video of the crowd from my vantage point on the walkway over Trade Street. The crowd on the College Street side was even bigger.

The EpiCentre--which is an entertainment complex that has more than 20 restaurants, bars, and nightclubs, plus a bowling alley, movie theater, and hotel--was so packed that security would no longer let people enter the complex. Many of the venues inside--Mez, Suite, Whisky River, Enso, and others--were being rented out by promoters to host CIAA-inspired day parties.

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