Wednesday, August 19, 2015

We're sexy and we know it, Charlotte.

According to's newly released (and safe for work) list of "America's Sexiest Cities 2015," Charlotte ranks No. 20. What makes a city sexy, you ask. Well that's what Playboy asked, too, and explains that it's "a combination of hot locals, cool nightlife, a great setting and an undercurrent of desire..."

Making the top 20 of any flattering national ranking is a good thing, I suppose. The top-five sexiest cities, Playboy's research and surveys show, are New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, and San Francisco. No surprises there, but those are also some of the country's largest cities. Wonder if there's any correlation between sexy and size? (No pun intended.) If you're curious about the Queen City's "peers," Tampa and Atlanta are ranked 16th and 17th, respectively. And Orlando, at No. 21, gives the Southeast five of the top 25 cities.

This map, from, shows where the sexiest cities are located. 

Monday, June 8, 2015

#GovJamCLT Is this Weekend - June 12-14

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 6/08/2015 No comments
The Charlotte Shapers are giving you the opportunity to collaborate on solutions to problems and challenges facing the city. It’s a weekend-long event, dubbed #GovJamCLT (see hash on Twitter), with the goal of helping “Charlotte residents begin to make the increasingly important connections needed between government and those the public sector serves.”

You might be familiar with previous events and initiatives the Charlotte Shapers have done over the last couple of years, such as its annual business idea competition. Part of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Community, the Charlotte group carries out the international organization’s mission of empowering young leaders (people in their 20s and 30s) to create solutions to problems around the world, essentially one community and city at a time. The Charlotte group’s primary focus is tackling youth unemployment, but they also address a wide range of issues, as you’ll see with #GovJamCLT.

#GovJamCLT Rundown

Date: June 12-14 | Friday, 5:45 - 9 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Admission: $15; covers all three days (each day that you attend, you get $5 back).
Location: The Junior League of Charlotte, 1332 Maryland Ave.

Part of the Global Gov Jam, when people around the world will come together for 48 hours, #GovJamCLT is open to everyone, and the theme of this “jam” will be announced at the start of the event (but you can presume it will be tied to local government). If you've never participated in an event like this before, all you need to do is come with an open mind and a desire to see positive change where you live.

Get complete details and register for #GovJamCLT at

Thursday, June 4, 2015

I don't know when, but at some point in recent years I developed a fascination with how cities and neighborhoods grow and, essentially, how they're built (or rebuilt). I know it has a lot to do with me having lived in Charlotte for almost a decade now, and the sizable growth I've witnessed here during that time.

So I enjoy reading the many news articles of announcements and updates on new condos, apartment buildings, office towers, hotels, shopping centers (and in many cases a combination of these things, commonly known as "mixed use") being planned and built around the city, that I come across on The Charlotte Observer and Charlotte Business Journal's websites. And, of course, that growth is mirrored (or should be mirrored) in the improvements in infrastructure, such as the final leg of Interstate 485 finally opening, the next phase of the light rail running to University City, and the continued renovations and expansions of Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

And it's the CLT airport stuff that's caused me to geek out. Seriously, since the airport announced, a month ago, the next phase of its development master plan, I've been talking to friends and colleagues about it like it's the Apple Watch or something. The $2.5 billion investment will make the airport more modern, convenient, accessible, and keep up with its crazy growth. Consider this: the airport welcomed 25 million total passengers for the year in 2004; 10 years later, in 2014, the total was 44 million.

Renderings of the planned renovations and expansions at Charlotte's airport. Credit: CLT

You can read about the planned projects, including expanding the terminal and lobby and renovating the concourses. But you'll definitely want to watch the video below, which is what fascinated me. It uses computer generation to show how, most notably, the terminal curb and roadway will be expanded and elevated, with the addition of several new lanes for vehicles dropping off and picking up passengers. And keep in mind, all of this construction will take place while the airport is in full operation, with millions of passengers coming and going each month.

Fascinating. #BarbaraWaltersVoice.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Summertime is approaching, and although we aren't kids anymore (which means gone are the nearly three-month-long summer breaks), there are plenty of opportunities to support youth in our communities. I've found, over the years, this is when many youth programs and nonprofit organizations are in great need of volunteers and mentors. I encourage you to get involved, whether it's in a long-term capacity with one organization or you're supporting various events throughout the coming weeks and months.

On Saturday, I volunteered with the Thomas Davis Defending Dreams Foundation's annual football camp. The Carolina Panthers' star, Thomas Davis, puts on the free event for Charlotte youth and invites several of his teammates and other players and coaches from around the NFL to provide a day of fun, sports training, and motivation for the kids (fellow Panthers Luke Kuechly, Ryan Kalil, and Jonathan Stewart were among those in attendance; watch the video of Davis' camp). The camp is a part of TDDDF's annual charity weekend, which also included a fundraising party Friday night at the Harvey B. Gantt Center (also attended and supported by several NFL players).

As I helped with the camp registration Saturday morning, and the kids walked up one by one to check in, it reminded me why I love giving my time to serve youth. Just seeing the looks on their faces -- excitement, enthusiasm, and even shyness for some -- took me back to when I was their ages, and had the benefit of men in my community positively impacting my life (from my father to my Boy Scout troop leaders and recreation league coaches).  

Out here supporting the man of the year @td58 with his football Champ Charlotte #defendingdreams #keeppounding

A photo posted by Jonathan Stewart (@jonathanstewar1) on

Below is a quick video I captured with my phone of the TDDDF camp kids shouting their excitement at the end of the day's activities.

I look forward to volunteering with youth throughout this summer, and I hope you will too! Follow me on Twitter @HollidayInk, where I often share details on volunteer and charitable opportunities in Charlotte.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Two of North Carolina's brightest stars and proudest natives have united -- and met for the first time -- for the new issue of ESPN The Magazine. In the sports mag's Music Issue (dated February 2, but hitting newsstands today), you'll find NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt Jr., who reps Mooresville, and hip-hop star J. Cole, who's always shouting out his hometown of Fayetteville.

Junior and Cole are featured on one of two covers of ESPN The Magazine's Music Issue (the other features music star Katy Perry and NFL star J.J. Watt). Credit: ESPN

Says Junior on meeting Cole, which all started from a shoutout the rapper gave the racer in a song:

"You pull for a guy because of the local connection. Normally, on the rare chance that a celebrity comes to my property, I get real nervous. But I wasn't nervous with him, because I knew this looks just like his backyard. It's a connection, a North Carolina connection, and he reps North Carolina in his music, and he's proud of where he's from and bringing recognition to Fayetteville. I'm proud of North Carolina too."

It's a great interview with the N.C. duo, "Dale Earnhardt Jr. and J. Cole: The Perfect Strangers."

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The G.O.A.T. and Charlotte Hornets team owner Michael Jordan delivered an emotional speech last evening when he accepted the Charlotte Business Journal Business Person of the Year award. In his nine-minute-long remarks, he spoke from the heart--wiping tears from his face--and made you feel proud to live in Charlotte and North Carolina, saying specifically that when he bought the team five years ago it gave him the chance to come home.

Photo credit: @DavidHeadCLT

We all know that M.J. was raised in North Carolina and went on to be a college star at UNC, but he admitted that many people will always associate him with Chicago, understandably, because it was his years and accomplishments with the Bulls that made him a household name. But he elaborated on his many ties to Charlotte, one of which was that his parents moved to the Charlotte area when he got drafted by the Bulls in 1984, and was something I didn't know.

Luckily, someone recorded Jordan's speech and has posted it to YouTube, which you can watch below.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Enjoy Brunch, Honor Dr. King

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 1/13/2015 No comments
My twin brother and I are co-hosting a brunch this Sunday, January 18, in Charlotte in honor of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The event begins at noon and takes place at Sydney's Martini and Wine Bar in Uptown. We're looking forward to presenting a culturally and socially enriching afternoon, which will include a live band and MLK-themed performances. Admission is free, but RSVP is required at; the cost of the brunch buffet is $15.

I hope you will join us on Sunday!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

It's Been A Long Time...

Posted by Jarvis Holliday On 1/10/2015 No comments
...I shouldn't have left you, without a strong [blog] to step to (ode to Rakim, in case you aren't so hip-hop-classic inclined). I've been absent from Grown People Talking for the last two months, the longest such break I've ever taken from this blog I started in 2008. But lemme explain.

At the end of October, I ended my six-and-a-half year run as a full-time freelancer, during which time I wrote, blog, edited, interviewed, strategized, and more for a number of media outlets--in print, digital, and broadcast--and others. I launched GPT in April 2008, a month after diving into my freelance career, and over the years it's provided me with a platform to opine on many things, usually deriving from the numerous people, places, and events I encountered as a freelancer in Charlotte.

Credit: LGA

My decision to go back to work on staff somewhere was in the making for a long time, and the opportunity I was looking for and the transition I desired all came together when I was hired mid-fall by one of Charlotte's--and the region's--leading creative firms. So over the last two and a half months, my new job has been my top priority, as I've focused on learning the ropes there, and, most impactful, adjusted to having a Monday through Friday office schedule again. I'm drinking more coffee than ever these days! LOL. But it's going great.

Now that I'm settled, I can start giving GPT a little TLC again, and I hope you will follow along. Thank you for reading the blog over the years, and I look forward to continuing to offer you my perspective, insight, and tidbits on these pages.

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