Thursday, April 29, 2010

Since Jacinda Garabito was surprisingly let go a few weeks ago from 96.1 The Beat's A.M. Mayhem morning show, I've watched as many of her loyal listeners have bombarded her personal Facebook page with comments about how much they miss her, how stupid the station was to let her go, and how the show isn't the same without her (they especially miss her doing "The Sleeze"). Jacinda has been admirably gracious in her replies, not once bashing her former employer.

Well, one of her Facebook friends isn't ready to let go--this morning Melissa Yourchisin from Huntersville created a Facebook page called "Bring Jacinda back to 96.1 The Beat... Charlotte!!!!" It popped into my newsfeed soon after and in a couple of minutes I watched it go from eight followers (Likes) to 16 (and about 10 minutes later as I type this there are 29). A few Facebook campaigns have worked in the past, like the guy who successfully lobbied to get Betty White to host Saturday Night Live (she's hosting SNL May 8).

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

NC Music Factory Cranking Up; My Mea Culpa

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/28/2010 2 comments
It's getting busy at the NC Music Factory. Not only did the hottest new nightclub in Charlotte, Butter NC, open a few months ago, but Black Bear Saloon opened earlier this month and Wet Willie's is set to open there any day now. Plus, Halo nightclub is still going strong, and the two live music venues, Uptown Amphitheatre and The Fillmore Charlotte, are lining up an exciting spring and summer concert schedule.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

It was a disappointing loss last night for the Charlotte Bobcats and their fans as the Orlando Magic swept the series 4-0. It's as if the home team didn't understand that they needed to step it up a level in the playoffs. But I'll say that the Bobcats organization stepped up the entertainment it offered during timeouts and halftime (as well as the fan giveaways distributed before the game). During the TV commercial break after the first quarter ended, the Bobcats Flight Squad brought the kind of energy and excitement I wished the actual Bobcats basketball team did. See the video I captured below.

Monday, April 26, 2010

An MSNBC/ article reveals the top 10 companies that are currently listing the most job openings nationwide. Three of them have strong ties to the Charlotte area: second-ranked Lowe's is headquartered in nearby Mooresville, sixth-ranked Bank of America is headquartered here, and tenth-ranked Wells Fargo considers Charlotte its East Coast banking hub after acquiring Wachovia. Click here to read the full story.

Bobcats Need to Be White Hot Tonight

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/26/2010 No comments
Even though no NBA team has ever come back to win a playoff series after going down 0-3, I'm looking forward to tonight's Charlotte Bobcats home playoff game against the Orlando Magic. I have two great seats via a pair of tickets I bought last week during a silent auction in support of Ifé Moore's campaign for Woman of the Year for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. It was a little bit more than I wanted to spend, but not only was it a good deal on the tix, it's supporting a great cause (all money raised goes toward finding a cure for blood cancers). And now, I get to see the Bobcats pull out a home victory tonight and force the series back to Orlando.

Photo from Saturday's home game. Credit: Kent Smith/NBAE.

If you have tickets to tonight's game, show your support for the Bobcats by wearing white. The game airs at 8 p.m. on TNT and Fox Sports Carolinas. For more, including a live web chat, visit

Friday, April 23, 2010

Events for the Weekend: April 23-25

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/23/2010 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, April 23

Green The Block Charlotte – Eastland Mall
Created by the Hip Hop Caucus and Green For All, Green The Block is a national campaign and coalition aimed at helping low-income communities of color become driving forces of the clean-energy economy. Day one of this weekend series of community events in Charlotte will feature a rally with the Rev. Lennox Yearwood of the Hip Hop Caucus, singer D. Woods, rapper Lupe Fiasco, and other special invited guests. The event will also feature a street soccer tournament and a green job information fair. Presented by The Green Pages USA and Concrete2Green. 5-8 p.m. Free. C2G Futsal Center, inside Eastland Mall, 5471 Central Ave. or

Fab 5 Fridays
It’s a new after-work social networking event (last week’s was held at On the Roxx) and it’s taking place at one of Uptown’s coolest lounges. Enjoy a free food buffet and drink specials. Music by DJ Shogun. Presented by and Firm Events. 5-9 p.m. Free. Fiji Sushi Bar and Lounge, 116 W. Fifth St.

Lupe Fiasco with B.o.B.
See two great hip-hop stars perform live. 8 p.m. $40. Halton Arena, UNC Charlotte, 9201 University City Blvd.

The Best of 2 Worlds
Two top DJs—the internationally known Latin DJ, Julian Serrano of Miami, and Atlanta’s popular DJ by way of Puerto Rico, DJ EU—share the same stage. Presented by Miami Nights. 10 p.m. Cost varies. The Forum, 300 N. College St.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Sir, Lance a Lot

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/22/2010 1 comment
If you grew up in the South like I did (Rembert, South Carolina to be exact), then I know you or at least several of your family members eat/ate Lance snacks. Most likely it would be the six-in-a-pack Lance crackers or cookies (I love the Nekot) that you find in convenience stores and vending machines (my mama and 'em call them "nabs"), or the honey buns, peanuts, or other snacks. Today, Lance Inc., which was founded 97 years ago and is headquartered in Charlotte, owns and produces several other brand snacks.

Photo by Peter Taylor.

I got to go inside Lance's posh corporate headquarters in Ballantyne, but the most fun I had was the hours I spent inside their large production plant on South Boulevard (you can see it behind the light rail line near Sharon Road West). This experience, and a lot of things you probably wanted to know about Lance, is chronicled in the feature story I wrote for the May issue of Charlotte magazine, on newsstands now. Click here to read it online.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Charlotte Summer Camps with Pro Ballers

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/21/2010 No comments
There are two sports camps being held in Charlotte this summer that I'm sure any kid would love to go to. Registration is currently underway for each of them.

Carolina Panthers star wide receiver Steve Smith is holding his third annual Steve Smith Football Camp June 17-19 for boys and girls ages 7 to 14. The camp will be held each day from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Ardrey Kell High School. The four-time Pro Bowler and some of his NFL buddies and top football coaches will teach the fundamentals of the sport. Skill contests and games will also be held. The registration fee is $189 and includes a camp T-shirt, autographed camp team photo, expert instruction, and opportunities to win prizes. Sponsors of the camp include Old Spice, Levine Children's Hospital, and Fifth Third Bank. For more details and to register, visit

Fred Whitfield is holding his 26th Annual Achievements Unlimited Basketball School July 5-9. It's the first year the Charlotte Bobcats president and CEO is holding the camp in Charlotte. It's open to boys and girls ages 8 to 18 and will be held each day from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Ardrey Kell High School, and you can expect many current and former NBA players to be on hand. The registration fee is $250 and includes fundamental basketball instruction, daily lunch and refreshments, a team picture, camp T-shirt, and gift bag. Sponsors include Gatorade and Jordan Brand. Visit for more details and to register.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Read About It: Tiger, M.J., Skipper

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/20/2010 No comments
The Quail Hollow Championship tees off in Charlotte next week, and everybody's abuzz now that Tiger Woods has committed to play in the tournament. It's going to be interesting to see what the atmosphere is like--how composed is Tiger, will the fans behave, are the paparazzi going to set up camp? I can only think back on better days, like when Tiger came here and won the tournament in 2007. That week was memorable from start to finish, beginning with Tiger's famous pairing with Michael Jordan and Skipper Beck in the Wednesday Pro-Am.

In the April 21-27 issue of Creative Loafing, you can read my cover story, "Quail Hollow Trilogy: The paths (and downfalls) of Tiger, M.J. and Skipper," where I chronicle how the lives of the golf great, basketball legend, and astute businessman have changed immensely since that fateful spring day. Click here.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Two great hip-hop shows are coming to colleges in the Charlotte area. Both are open to the public, and if you're a college student, particularly a senior, this is a great way to wrap up your last days on the yard. (Read to the end of this post for a two-for-one ticket special on Sunday's Trey Songz concert.)

Lupe Fiasco and B.o.B. are performing at UNC Charlotte's Dale F. Halton Arena this Friday, April 23 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $40 ($25 for UNCC students). While Fiasco is building a buzz for his highly anticipated third album, Lasers, B.o.B. is one of the hottest newcomers in hip-hop and is releasing his debut album, The Adventures of Bobby Ray, next Tuesday (it's led by the single "Nothin' On You" and today on his website he leaked "Airplanes Part II," the album track with Eminem and Hayley Williams of Paramore). Click here for more details on the concert and to purchase tickets.

I Spotted the Bobcats Playoffs Bandwagon

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/19/2010 No comments
You know how a lot of people have jumped on the Charlotte Bobcats bandwagon since the team became a viable playoff contender? Well, last night I spotted that bandwagon--two of them actually--in the parking lot of a Lake Norman restaurant.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

You'll Like Butter, Baby

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/17/2010 No comments
If you're looking for somewhere to go tonight, you might want to try Butter NC (also known as Butter Charlotte), Charlotte's hottest new nightclub. You've likely heard about it since it held its grand opening in February--and you've probably also heard how it can often be difficult to get in.

Butter NC was the latest venue to open at NC Music Factory until BlackBear Charlotte opened this week (Wet Willie's is also finally scheduled to open there in a few weeks).

You can read about the Butter experience in the article I wrote for the May issue of Charlotte magazine, "Butter Up." And click here for the club's website. Also, one quick update, when I interviewed NASCAR driver Denny Hamlin, an investor in Butter NC, he said they were looking to add a fourth night to their current operating schedule, which is Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I've learned that they will soon be open on Tuesdays.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Events for the Weekend: April 16-18

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/16/2010 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, April 16

Free Fridays After Work
It’s a new after-work social networking event and it’s taking place at South End’s newest martini bar. Enjoy a free food buffet and drink specials. Presented by and Firm Events. 5-9 p.m. Free. On the Roxx, 1520 South Blvd. or

Grand Opening of BlackBear Charlotte
It’s the newest venue to open at the NC Music Factory and there'll be a live band, DJ, and plenty of drink specials. Below the Belt will be performing live on the patio (5-8 p.m.) and DJ Kommotion goes on at 9 p.m., followed by the Swingin' Richards at 10:30. Drink specials include $12 domestic buckets and $3 Soco lime shots. 5 p.m.-2 a.m. Free. BlackBear Charlotte, 900 Seaboard St.

Mary B. Morrison’s Pajama Jam
The bestselling author hosts this evening of conversation, networking, and fun at NoDa’s eclectic bookstore. Food and drinks will be served. Sponsored by RealEyes Bookstore, Touch One Productions, Mingleberry, and JSW Media. 8 p.m.-midnight. $30. RealEyes Bookstore, 3306-B N. Davidson St.

Freedom Fridays
It’s a new monthly event taking place on the third Friday, and this edition celebrates the birthdays of Aries. 10 p.m. Free. Luna Lounge, 521 N. College St.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thinking Outside of the Box

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/15/2010 No comments
If you've ever walked along the streets of Uptown Charlotte, then you've surely noticed all of the newsracks that line the streets. And it's only increased in recent years. You'll find boxes and racks for everything from The Charlotte Observer, USA Today, Creative Loafing, The Charlotte Post, and Skirt! to publications for real estate, auto sales, fitness, and more. After the city conducted a study that basically showed that the number of newsracks was getting out of control, it passed an amendment to its streets and sidewalks ordinance last year to regulate them.

As a result, this week the city is installing newsracks that will replace the ones individual publications once maintained. Instead of separate boxes in all shapes, sizes, and colors, each designated location will house a large unit that has spaces for multiple publications. There will be 21 of these units throughout Uptown with a total of 320 spaces for publications. Think of it sort of like cubbyholes. A few of the boxes on each unit will be locked with coin entry for the paid pubs, but the majority will be open access since most of the pubs around town are free.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Free Tennis Lessons Saturday

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/13/2010 No comments
If you've never played tennis (but always wanted to learn) or haven't played in years (and need to shake the rust off your game), you might be interested in the Taste of Tennis being held by MatchMaker Tennis this Saturday. MatchMaker Tennis is a local club that pairs tennis players, offers lessons and clinics, and holds social events for its members. While there's normally a fee for events and membership dues, they're holding a free beginner tennis class for adults that is open to the public.

The Taste of Tennis free session is scheduled for Saturday, April 17, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. at tennis courts 5 and 6 at Freedom Park (1900 East Boulevard). You must register at if you wish to participate, and as of this morning there were 18 spots available (capacity is 40).

Sunday, April 11, 2010

I realize that I have a lot going on, but I can't believe I almost forgot my birthday. Actually, the birthday of my blog, Grown People Talking. GPT turned two years old today--I launched this site April 11, 2008. So here, on April 11, 2010 at 10-something at night, I'd like to briefly reflect on my past year of blogging.

(I borrowed this cool image from a fellow blogger).

I tend to blog a lot about famous people visiting Charlotte, people from Charlotte who are becoming famous, when a cool place opens or goes out of business, when Charlotte gets an interesting top ranking on a cities list, as well as when this city is the focus of a national story regarding a certain trend. And then there's the shameless self-promotion when I post links to articles I've written for magazines and newspapers. Admittedly (and regrettably), I've slacked on my posting of Events for the Week, which, when I do it lately, has been Events for the Weekend. I have had several GPT readers scold me about this and I plan to get back to posting events consistently.

Like I did last year, below are the top-five blog posts that received the most page views during the last twelve months:
  1. Two Things I Realized About Sonya Curry (February 13, 2009)
  2. My First Time: Club 935 (January 11, 2009)
  3. History Channel Profiles Hidden Valley Kings (April 10, 2009)
  4. The List: 2010 CIAA Events and Parties (February 2, 2010)
  5. Charlotte's Kendra James Is a 'Bad Girl' (December 2, 2009)
I hope I'm able to continue to find the time to blog on this site, and I hope you'll continue to find the interest to read it. Cheers!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Events for the Weekend: April 9-11

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/09/2010 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, April 9

Speed Networking / Privy
First part of the event is a networking social. Complimentary appetizers by McHealthy Café. 6-9 p.m. $5. Then it’s followed by an after-party. Drink specials include $5 cosmos, apple martinis, and peach martinis. Music by DJ Shogun. Presented by Free until 11 p.m.; cover charge after. 9:30 p.m.-2 a.m. Luna Lounge, 521 N. College St.

Blush Fridays
This weekly ladies night series continues at the EpiCentre’s new VIP lounge. Elements Diet and Fitness is the sponsor this week and will be giving away a free membership. Music by DJ RWONZ. Half-price martinis. 8 p.m. Ladies free.

The Lady Cats, the Charlotte Bobcats dance team, are in the Eastern Conference finals of the NBA Dance Team Tournament. In this online voting contest, they're currently pitted against the Heat Dancers (Miami), and as of the time of this posting the Lady Cats had a 60 percent to 40 percent edge. That's remarkable considering the Heat Dancers have won the competition several of the past years.

If the Lady Cats win this round, they'll advance to the finals to meet the winner from the Western Conference, where the Suns Dancers currently lead the Mavs Dancers. To get this far, the Lady Cats have beaten the Sixers Dancers, the Luvabulls, and the Magic Dancers (the last two by large margins). Hopefully the Charlotte Bobcats will follow a similar path as they begin their first-ever playoff series in a little more than a week.

To vote in the dance competition, click here. For more on the Lady Cats (including photo and video galleries), click here.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Tonight at 10:30 p.m. on Showtime you can see the full-length version of Together: The Hendrick Motorsports Story. The two-hour documentary, which is narrated by Tom Cruise, takes you through the history of the multi-championship-winning, Charlotte/Concord-based NASCAR team that was founded by Rick Hendrick. From the early days of single driver Geoff Bodine to the dynasty Hendrick has built that currently includes Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Mark Martin, and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Two years ago, I wrote a feature for Charlotte magazine about Hendrick Motorsports being the most dominant team in all of sports: "All in the Family."

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Rielle Brings Us Oprah

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/06/2010 No comments
If you haven't realized it yet, in the current state of the world we live in, being a mistress is a good thing. Having an affair with a married man, particularly if he's famous, will bring you fame and lots of perks. Tiger Woods's mistresses have publicists; Jesse James's jumpoffs are getting as much limelight as his Oscar-winning wife. And then there's Reille Hunter, Charlotte's new mistress-turned-celebrity resident. Thanks to her, we might be getting a visit from Oprah Winfrey.

The National Enquirer broke the story yesterday that Oprah will be interviewing Hunter for an upcoming episode. The Enquirer even said the interview will take place in Hunter's Charlotte home. Harpo Productions confirmed today that the interview is indeed scheduled, but made no mention of the location. I would think logistically it makes more sense to interview Hunter in the confines of Oprah's Chicago studio, but, hey, maybe Oprah wants to truly go inside the life of a mistress. (And the Enquirer has been accurate about a lot of things involving Hunter in the past, including uncovering her affair with former Senator John Edwards).

Last month I blogged that "Rielle Hunter Wants This Attention" and that's only now become more evident. And for someone who claims to want privacy to raise the daughter she shares with Edwards, what kind of paparazzi circus does she think is going to take place outside of her home if the paps are now seeking sightings of the big O?

5 of 25 'Most Stylish People' Revealed

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/06/2010 1 comment
Charlotte STYLE Magazine has revealed the top five of its impending "25 Most Stylish People in Charlotte" list. They are: former Carolina Panther and rising entrepreneur Mike Minter, fashion journalist Rachel Sutherland, founder Brooke Gibson, style host and blogger T. Strong, and librarian and community volunteer Jennifer France.

Below is a short, behind-the-scenes video the magazine has put together.

Charlotte STYLE Magazine will reveal the full list and the issue's cover at its April 17 event at Ballantyne Hotel. Visit for more details.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Sunday Brunch at Soul Gastrolounge

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/04/2010 No comments
Here's a camera phone pic of the delicious chicken and waffles I ate today during Sunday brunch at Soul Gastrolounge in Plaza Midwood. It was a great after-Easter-church-service meal, plus we ate on the balcony, enjoying the spring weather. The chicken and waffles is part of their regular brunch menu, which is served Saturdays and Sundays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and they also had special items like Rabbit Pot Pie in honor of the holiday.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Andrea and I went to the First Friday South End Gallery Crawl yesterday. This, in my opinion, is the best gallery crawl in the city. And with the weather being perfect, it was a great turnout.

There were 11 galleries participating, many of them serving wine and light refreshments as patrons perused the spaces. Charlotte Art League sort of serves as the home base for the gallery crawl, so it's usually a good idea to start your trek there. Plus, they feature live music.

(See video of a magic trick after the jump.)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Events for the Weekend: April 2-4

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 4/02/2010 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, April 2

South End Gallery Crawl
It’s spring, the weather is great, and this month’s gallery crawl is jam packed. Participating galleries include: Bead Me Gallery, Charlotte Art, Charlotte Trolley Museum, Ciel Gallery, Originals by Carolyn DiGiovanni, Elder Gallery, Lark & Key Gallery, Hacker's Studio Gallery, SouthEND Gallery @ SouthEND Home, and Studio 21. 6-9 p.m. Free. South End, corner of S. Tryon St. and Camden Road.

Free Fridays
The first Friday of the month means free admission at one of Charlotte’s swankiest lounges. Enjoy the best in hip-hop, R&B, and reggae. On this night, the club often reaches capacity so get there early. 10 p.m. Free until capacity; cover charge after. Kiss Lounge, 204 W. Woodlawn Rd.

Celebrity Fridays—Tierra Marie’s Sponsor Party
See the R&B singer perform her new single, “Sponsor,” and the hit you still love, “Maker Her Feel Good.” 10 p.m. Cost varies; members and ladies free until midnight. Club 935, 935 S. Summit Ave.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Lists come out all the time, ranking cities in everything from best places to live to those with the fattest people. But when it comes to cities lists that involve financial and economic data, people really take notice, especially in an economy like this. Yesterday, an AOL News article listed the Top 10 Healthiest Housing Markets for 2010. The Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord metro area ranks third on the list.

Yay! Hooray! But before you alert the boosters and the city leaders send out press releases, read the brief description it stated about our market.

"Last year housing prices in this financial center (Wachovia and Bank of America) were already stable, incomes were up and new household formation was among the highest in the nation. With an unemployment rate around 5 percent, the area is projected to add 2 percent more jobs this year."

Wrong! "With an unemployment rate around 5 percent..." Uhh, maybe that was our unemployment rate in 2000 because it's certainly not in 2010. The latest report from the N.C. Employment Security Commission states that the unemployment rate in the Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord area is 12.8 percent (109,789 residents were unemployed in January).

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