News Briefs

Posted 10/11/19


County seeks resident to serve on Board of Health

PITTSBORO — The Chatham County Board of Health has an upcoming vacancy that must be filled by a public citizen who lives in the …

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News Briefs

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County seeks resident to serve on Board of Health

PITTSBORO — The Chatham County Board of Health has an upcoming vacancy that must be filled by a public citizen who lives in the county. Interested applicants should submit applications no later than 5 p.m. on Oct. 25.

The Board of Health is the policymaking, rulemaking and deliberative body for the Chatham County Public Health Department. The Board of Health’s responsibility is to protect and promote the health of the community.

The Chatham County Board of Commissioners will approve the appointment, which would initially serve until June 30, 2020, and then would be eligible for reappointment to a full three-year term.

Board of Health meetings are held the fourth Monday of each month, except July and December. Meetings begin at 6 p.m., with dinner provided and reimbursement for mileage.

The application to serve can be completed online at Applicants also may contact Lindsay Ray at 919-542-8200 or to get an email version or printed copy.

Applicants must include a resume or CV if available with the application. Those with questions may call 919-545-8391.

NCDOT opens ‘Leaping into the Future’ poster contest

RALEIGH — What will the future of transportation look like? Engineers at the N.C. Dept. of Transportation want young people to show them through artwork.

In conjunction with updating the state’s long-range transportation plan, the NC Moves 2050 Plan, members of NCDOT’s transportation planning division have established the NC Moves 2050 Poster Contest.

In its inaugural year, the contest theme is “Leaping into the Future.” All students who live in and/or attend school in North Carolina and were born between Jan. 1, 2001, and Dec. 31, 2014, are encouraged to participate by submitting their own artwork.

Prizes will be awarded to the top three artists across three age groups determined as of Dec. 31, 2019: junior (ages 5-9), intermediate (10-13), and senior (14-18). All entries must be turned in or mailed and postmarked no later than Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020, and must include a Certificate of Authenticity.

Artwork may be dropped off at NCDOT Highway Division Offices across the state or mailed to: NC Moves 2050 Poster Contest, N.C. Moves 2050, 1554 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, N.C. 27699.

­— CN + R staff reports

Siler City receives $20,000 grant from Duke Energy Foundation

SILER CITY — The Town of Siler City received a $20,000 grant from Duke Energy Foundation which Siler City will use to fund improvements in its Emergency Operations Center

Siler City is one of 65 grant recipients across the state selected from more than 140 applications, with projects ranging from swift water rescue equipment and specialized radios to nonprofit training and Spanish language outreach. Awarded projects will be implemented in communities over the following weeks and months.

Siler City will utilize the grant toward improvements in its Emergency Operations Center, which is located in the Police Department building on Second Avenue in the downtown area. Additions will include modular tables and seating, expanded wireless capabilities, video monitors and communications tools to allow for enhanced interaction with local, county, state and national, as well as to increase and improve incoming and outgoing exchange of information.

“We look forward to utilizing these much-appreciated funds from the Duke Energy Foundation to improve the safety of our personnel and citizens by expanding our ability to provide a higher level of emergency services,” said Roy Lynch, Siler City’s Town Manager.

“Duke Energy stands with our communities as they recover from the devastation of recent storms, and we want to help them become more resilient to the impacts of future storms,” said Stephen De May, North Carolina president, Duke Energy.

­— CN + R staff reports

Meteorologist Paul Heggen will present CCCC sustainability lecture

PITTSBORO — Meteorologist Paul Heggen will be the speaker for the Central Carolina Community College’s third sustainable speaker series in honor of Richard and Rebecca Hayes.

The program titled “Climate Change: Science Without Politics”, will be held at noon on Tuesday, Oct. 22, in the Holmes Meeting Room of the Chatham Community Library on the Central Carolina Community College Chatham Main Campus in Pittsboro.

The event is sponsored by the Richard and Rebecca Hayes Endowed Lecture Fund for Environmental Policy and Stewardship through the CCCC Foundation.

Paul Heggen joined CBS17 in November 2017, but he’s been fascinated with the weather for much longer — at the age of 4, he witnessed lightning strike a neighbor’s house, and in kindergarten, a tornado skirted the town where his family lived. Some kids would be scared of thunderstorms after those experiences; instead, they sparked a fascination with weather, and he’s studied it ever since.

Heggen grew up in South St. Paul, Minn., but since graduating from high school he’s moved all around the country. He attended the University of Denver and earned a bachelor’s degree in geography, performing research into the effects of El Nino on weather patterns in the Rocky Mountains.

Heggen has covered everything from tropical storms along the Gulf Coast to blizzards in the Upper Midwest to tornado outbreaks in the Southern Plains, and now hurricanes in North Carolina. Before coming to the Triangle, Heggen spent eight years at WSMV in Nashville, Tenn. Previous to that, he worked for stations in Tulsa, Okla., Huntington, W.Va., Duluth, Minn., and Beaumont, Texas.

He holds the American Meteorological Society’s “Certified Broadcast Meteorologist” seal of approval.

On the awards shelf, Heggen has six Emmy Awards, and multiple Best Weathercast and Best Weather Anchor awards from the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists. Just before leaving Nashville, he was voted Best Weatherperson and Best Local Blog by the readers of the Tennessean newspaper.

First Alert, Lowe’s, fire departments team up for Fire Prevention Month

PITTSBORO — In honor of Fire Prevention Month in October and to bring fire safety top of mind, First Alert is teaming up with more than 1,700 Lowe’s stores across the country — including the chain’s Pittsboro location — in a joint effort to spread awareness about the importance of whole home protection.

As part of this initiative, North Carolina residents are invited to participate in a special safety education event with their local fire department from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Saturday at various Lowe’s locations throughout the state, including Lowe’s of Pittsboro, 121 Lowe’s Drive.

The focus will be to educate attendees about how to protect their families and homes from the threats of fire and carbon monoxide (CO).

Each year, nearly 3,000 Americans die from home fires, while CO poisoning claims approximately 450 lives, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The NFPA also reports that almost three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms (40%) or no working smoke alarms (17 percent). Many of these tragedies could be prevented with the proper placement, number and maintenance of working alarms.

Store associates and fire officials will host fun, family-focused activities to teach families about equipping their homes with smoke and CO alarms, as well as planning and practicing a fire escape plan. Children will have the opportunity to build a wooden fire truck in a one-time kids’ workshop and will receive firefighter hats, coloring books and educational materials, while supplies last.

Public forum set to discuss safety of Pittsboro’s drinking water

PITTSBORO — The Haw River Assembly will hold a public forum to discuss the industrial contamination of Pittsboro’s drinking water from 6 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 16 at the Chatham County Agricultural and Conference Center, 1192 U.S. Hwy. 64 Business.

Haw River Assembly is teaming up with academic researchers, state and local agency staff, and community members to hold a public forum to answer questions and provide information on the industrial contaminants that have been found in Pittsboro’s drinking water, associated risks, what is being done, and what still needs to be done to address this issue.

The researchers who have been working on this issue for years will share their data and answer questions about what these levels mean for the safety of Pittsboro’s drinking water. Staff from N.C. Department of Environmental Quality will discuss what is currently being done to address the problem across the state.

The panel will include: Dr. Heather Stapleton, environmental chemist at Duke University; Dr. Detlef Knappe, Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at N.C. State; Dr. Jamie Bangma, environmental toxicologist, UNC- Chapel Hill; a representative from the NC Department of Human Health Services (TBD); and a NCDEQ agency representative (TBD).

Haw River Assembly has been working with academic researchers, local and state agency staff, and impacted communities to document and raise awareness around the issue of industrial contaminants in drinking water for nearly a decade.

Library hosting film screening for National Domestic Violence Awareness Month

PITTSBORO — As part of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Chatham Community Library will host a screening of the documentary “Private Violence” at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Holmes Meeting Room.

The film explores a simple but deeply disturbing fact of American life: the most dangerous place for a woman in America is in her own home. Through the eyes of two survivors — Deanna Walters, a mother who seeks justice for the crimes committed against her at the hands of her estranged husband; and Kit Gruelle, an advocate who seeks justice for all women — the film bears witness to the complicated and complex realities of intimate partner violence.

Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) evolved from the first Day of Unity held in October 1981. In October 1987, the first Awareness Month was observed followed by Congress designating October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in 1989. Such legislation has passed every year since with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence providing key leadership. The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence began at the the United States Commission on Civil Rights hearing on battered women. Beginning as 100 individuals, it became thousands of members working together and sharing their experiences with domestic violence, homophobia, sexism, racism, and ageism.

This event is free and open to the public. Resource tables and informational displays will be on site.

Town of Siler City announces leaf collection schedule

SILER CITY — Siler City loose leaf collection will begin Monday, Oct. 21.

Residents living on the south-side of Raleigh Street will receive a leaf pick-up on Monday through Friday in the first week and those living on the north-side of Raleigh Street will receive a leaf pick-up starting the next week on Monday, Oct. 28.

Pick up will take place on one side of town for the week, then move to the other side of town for a week.

Leaves should be placed in neat piles at the edge of the street (not in the street) where they will be accessible to the vacuum machine. Foreign objects such as sticks, rocks and trash must be removed from the loose leaves and piled separately for later collection. To avoid damage to the leaf vacuum, leaves containing foreign objects will not be picked up.

“Your cooperation will make our leaf collection program a success,” a press release from the Town states. Residents may direct questions about the program to 919-742-4732.

Library to host National Hispanic Heritage Month Event

SILER CITY — In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month the Chatham County Public Libraries, in collaboration with Artist Studio Project and the 5th Annual El Quixote Festival, plan an afternoon filled with music, comedy, literature and friendship featuring contemporary minstrel Crispin d’Olot of Leon, Spain.

The event takes place from 1 to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19, at Wren Memorial Library in Siler City as Crispin performs a re-imagined conversation between Lope and Cervantes, as well as performing some of Quevedo, Luis de Góngora and many others. This performance will be in Spanish with some English translations.

Twenty years ago Crispin d’Olot, old-fashioned troubadour, started performing in theaters, schools and places of Spain, Europe and Latin America.

Hispanic Heritage Month began as Hispanic Heritage Week. Hispanic Heritage Week was established by legislation sponsored by Rep. Edward R. Roybal of Los Angeles and was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson in 1968.

This event is free and open to the public.

Funding for the performance is made available by the generous support of the Friends of the Chatham Community Library.

PlayMakers ‘Wilder & Wilder’ offers free performance at J-M

SILER CITY — PlayMakers Repertory Company offers a free performance of “Wilder & Wilder,” a medley of Thornton Wilder short plays, on Oct. 17 at Jordan-Matthews High School in Siler City.

The production is part of PlayMakers’ annual mobile tour designed to make outstanding theater accessible to communities throughout central North Carolina. This year’s three-week tour also includes stops in Fayetteville, Hillsborough, Chapel Hill, Pittsboro and Fuquay-Varina.

The event begins with coffee and cookies at 3:30 p.m. and continues with the performance at 4 p.m. “Wilder & Wilder” runs about 90 minutes, with a 70-minute performance and 10 minutes of audience activities before and after the play.

Earlier in the day, PlayMakers actors will lead a closed workshop for JM actors that includes exercises focusing on physical movement, dramatic interpretation and scene performances.

“This is an exceptional opportunity for our students and for the entire community,” said Rose Pate, president of JMArts, which works with English teacher Ting Lam to bring the annual event to Siler City. “We appreciate the relationship we have developed with PlayMakers.”

This is the fourth season PlayMakers has offered a free performance at the high school. Last fall, the professional theater company based at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill captivated the audience with an innovative performance of Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.”

More information about JMArts, including a schedule of arts events this season and how to become a member, is available online at

Central Carolina SHRM creates legacy through CCCC Foundation

SANFORD — Central Carolina SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) is creating a legacy for the chapter and advancing the HR profession through education with a sponsored endowment to the Central Carolina Community College Foundation.

Through the years, Central Carolina SHRM has supported the CCCC Student Chapter activities and national SHRM student memberships but was unable to offer a college scholarship. As a small chapter with limited financial resources, a plan was made to participate in the planning of a state conference in order to gain enough funds to make the money to create the desired scholarship. The state council — NCSHRM — offered opportunities for chapters to sponsor the state conference in partnership and then receive a portion of the proceeds for the chapter. Central Carolina SHRM came together with a vision and strategy to make the 2018 conference a great success in Pinehurst. This allowed for leadership growth and service to other HR professionals in order to create a pathway to advancing the HR profession.

The CCSHRM chapter also benefits by meeting these students where they are and helping them to have the means to finish their goals in the HR profession.

“The Foundation is grateful that CCSHRM believes in the mission of CCCC and the Foundation by endowing this scholarship for our HR students,” said Dr. Emily Hare, CCCC Foundation Executive Director. “CCSHRM truly believes in the power of education … We cannot say thank you enough for their generosity!”

CCSHRM’s next big event is Tuesday, Oct. 22, at the Dennis A. Wicker Civic & Conference Center in Sanford. The Step Up to Stand Out program, which includes workshops designed for all leaders or aspiring leaders, will be held from 8 a.m.-noon. For more information about the CCSHRM chapter, visit

­— CN + R staff reports

GTOC 2020 Nature Calendar now available

Grand Trees of Chatham (GTOC) has finished work on its 2020 nature calendar and is making it available at several retailers throughout Chatham County. This marks the fifth straight year GTOC has produced a professionally-printed full-size calendar with nature photographs that highlight Chatham County’s natural beauty.

As in prior editions, local photographer Gary Simpson took all of the photos on a volunteer basis. This year’s nature shots include a cover photo of the iconic belted cows at Fearrington Village, as well as a spooky full moon on a cloudy night, a longleaf pine seedling, an Eastern box turtle, a field of Daffodils, and raging flood waters on Robeson Creek.

Included as a special feature of the 2020 calendar are photos of Chatham County’s State Champion White Oak tree, along with a detailed explanation of how GTOC goes about measuring the trees that are nominated by local property owners for special recognition. Remarkably, the Champion White Oak measures out at 112 feet tall, with a trunk that is over 23 feet in circumference.

GTOC could not continue its nature calendar project without the willingness of the local retailers who, without compensation, make room for the display and distribution of calendars in their stores. This year’s GTOC calendar can be obtained for a $20 donation at the following retailers: Chatham Marketplace, Liquidambar Gallery and Gifts, New Horizons West, The Joyful Jewel, and Southern Supreme. The 2020 calendar will also be available at GTOC’s booth during the October 26th Pittsboro Street Fair.

GTOC is a local, non-profit, volunteer organization with the mission of increasing public understanding and appreciation of Chatham County’s valuable and irreplaceable trees.


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