Chapel Hill eNews

Post Date:04/13/2017 8:54 AM
Chapel Hill eNews

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Up Front


Friday is a Town Holiday


Most municipal offices will be closed Friday, April 14. Chapel Hill Transit will operate on a Saturday schedule. Chapel Hill Public Library will be open Friday, but will be closed Sunday, April 16. Read more.

From Town Hall

Town-Sponsored Events

Town Services




Up Front



TOWNweek has been posted!





Things to do in Chapel Hill

Feature from the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership

2nd Friday ArtWalk
6-9 p.m. Friday, April 14

Three special events are planned to celebrate Poetry Month and Architecture Month:

  1. Bright green, fluffy WORDS are growing out of the ground! Experience FLORAFFITI and spoken word performances with artist Carter Hubbard at 10-15 of her FLORAFFITI sites, near ArtWalk venues.

  2. Mimi Herman, 2017 Piedmont Laureate, will host an Art and Treasure Hunt for ArtWalkers to creat their own ekphrastic poems (poems about art) as you wander the galleries. You’ll have the chance to perform it live at an open mic at the ArtsCenter.

  3. AIA Triangle is celebrating Architecture Month by exemplifying the importance, beauty, and significance of architecture in our communities. Local architecture firms are opening their doors for an Architecture Firm Crawl during the ArtWalk. Stop by the firm offices to see models, photos, plans of their projects; and meet the architects. 

For more information, visit

For more things to do, visit





Town in News

Town in News – TIN Report – is a sampling of news media coverage about the Town of Chapel Hill compiled by the Communications and Public Affairs Department. This listing includes articles and columns that are available on the web, and may not necessarily contain all stories in the print edition of the papers or on televised broadcasts.

Links access online stories that are posted for a limited time. Some media organizations require registration or a subscription.

For information, contact us at


UNC's national title boosts profits for businesses, schools (The Daily Tar Heel)

The Atlantic Coast Conference and the town of Chapel Hill are sharing in the success of UNC's men's basketball national title win April 3, with money pouring in as a result of the victory. Read more:


Homestead Aquatic Facility Expected to Open Next Week (

The distinctive scent of chlorine will once again permeate the air of the Homestead Aquatic Facility in Chapel Hill as the popular public swimming destination returns to normal operations next week. Read more:




From Town Hall





Receiving the NC3C Awards were staff members from the Town of Chapel Hill Communications and Public Affairs Department – (left to right) Graphic Artist Melanie Miller, Communications Manager Catherine Lazorko and Communications Specialist Ran Northam.

Town of Chapel Hill receives Excellence in Communications Awards

Charlotte, NC – The Town of Chapel Hill was among 22 North Carolina local governments to earn recognition in the Tenth North Carolina City & County Communicators’ (NC3C) Excellence in Communications Awards. The Town of Chapel Hill won two awards.

The awards were presented Thursday, April 6, 2017, at the NC3C’s annual spring conference in Charlotte during which the organization celebrated 10 years of existence. More than 133 entries were received.

“Our organization is full of city and county government communicators who are excellent at what they do. They are innovative, creative, passionate, and dedicated, and that shows in their work,” said NC3C President Glenn Hargett. “It was an honor to preside over the program, viewing these exciting demonstrations of work to communicate the stories of the jurisdictions they serve.”

Categories included TV & Videos, Communication Technology, Special Events, Printed Publications, Most Creative Project for the Least Amount of Funds, Citizen Participation, and Marketing Tools.

The Town of Chapel Hill received first place award for the “TOWNTalk Employee Newsletter” in the category of Printed Employee Newsletters. The newsletter is designed to share a common attitude and core values that connect and motivate employees.

The Town also won the second place award for the best general use of social media. For that award, the judges commented that it was hard to award the number two spot for the exceptionally strong submission.

Staff members from the Town of Chapel Hill Communications and Public Affairs Department – Communications Manager Catherine Lazorko, Communications Specialist Ran Northam, and Graphic Designer Melanie Miller received the awards.

Judges for the NC3C Excellence in Communications Awards were government communication professionals from Kansas, Arizona, Texas, Michigan, Maryland and Oregon. Each judge has previously won state or national awards.

The purpose of North Carolina City & County Communicators is to encourage professional development and networking among local governmental communications professionals. The organization was formed in March 2007 and is made up of government professional communicators from around the state. For more information about NC3C, visit the website,





Community Meeting: Sewer Construction for Historic Rogers Road Area

The public is invited to a community meeting scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 21, to learn more about construction plans for new sewer lines to serve the Historic Rogers Road area and some additional properties.

A collaborative effort among Orange County and the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro has worked to extend sewer service and establish a community center for the Historic Rogers Road–Eubanks Road Community, which is geographically split by the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro. Progress toward this goal was made in November 2014 when the new Rogers Road Community Center opened.

The Rogers-Eubanks Neighborhood Association in collaboration with Orange County, the Towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro, and OWASA will host the meeting to provide information and answer questions.  

At the community meeting, information will be provided and comments received about the following topics:

  • Construction schedule and impacts
  • Connections to sewer service – details and potential costs
  • Information about other community services of interest

The meeting will take place at the RENA Community Center, 101 Edgar St., Chapel Hill, NC 27516.

More details are available online at and -- enter Rogers Road in the search box

For more information, please contact OWASA engineering manager Vishnu Gangadharan, at 919-537-4248 or send an e-mail to





Recap of American Legion Property Charrette

The Town of Chapel Hill held a charrette – a public design and planning activity -- on Saturday, April 8, at the Legion Post to gather ideas about the future use of the American Legion property which was recently purchased by the Town.

More than 100 people attended throughout the day. Participants worked with a design consulting team in small groups to create conceptual sketches for the 36-acre property. Information was presented about natural features and neighboring properties so that the sketches would be sensitive to the surroundings.

At the end of the day, the consultants shared seven sketches, encompassing a variety of options. Significant recreation facilities and conservation of the stream corridor were typical features in the concepts presented.

The consultants will now work on refining these sketches, compiling all the written feedback received prior to and during the day of the charrette, and identifying the common themes.

The American Legion Task Force will then review these findings later in April. A report back to the community and Town Council is anticipated in May.

Additional information on the public engagement process can be found at





NC3C Elects as President Town of Chapel Hill Communications Manager

CHARLOTTE, NC -- The NC City and County Communicators (NC3C) elected Town of Chapel Hill Communications Manager Catherine Lazorko as NC3C President during its 10th annual conference held April 5-7, in Charlotte.

Lazorko has worked in public relations and marketing for municipalities and universities for more than 20 years. She joined the Town of Chapel Hill in 2004, and has held previous communications director positions at the NC State University College of Design and UNC-Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science. While in New Mexico, she was a news writer and alumni editor for NM State University, and the public information officer for the City of Las Cruces, NM.

A Philadelphia native, Lazorko is a veteran newspaper reporter with positions at the El Paso Times, Las Cruces Sun-News and Abilene Reporter-News. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Texas at El Paso and a master’s degree in English from NM State University.

At the annual conference, local government communicators shared innovative practices for managing communication channels and new messaging, including podcasts and social media. They discussed ways to increase public engagement, and advance trust and transparency in government. As traditional media shrink, online government channels are becoming direct lines of communication with residents.

“Communication lies at the heart of good governance, transparency and accountability,” Lazorko said. “Today we have more direct access to the public than ever before. NC3C is committed to enriching two-way communication systems that allow governments to interact and engage to enrich people’s lives.”

NC3C Executive Board members are Dana Kaminske, president-elect and communications and marketing manager for the City of Hickory; Rebecca Carter, vice president and public information officer for Mecklenburg County; Joni Powell, secretary and director of public affairs and communications for the Town of Holly Springs; Rick Mercier, treasurer and communications manager for the Town of Garner; Tameka Kenan-Norman, executive committee member and public affairs manager for the City of Rocky Mount; Kasia Faryna Thompson, executive committee member and communications and outreach manager for Cabarrus County; and Max Taintor, executive committee member and videographer for Buncombe County. Glenn Hargett, assistant city manager of communications and community affairs for the City of Jacksonville, serves as NC3C past-president.

About NC3C – The purpose of NC City & County Communicators is to encourage professional development and networking among local governmental communications professionals. The organization was formed in March 2007 and is made up of government professional communicators from around the state. For more information,




Town-Sponsored Events




Recycling shredded paper 

The Shred-a-Thon Is Coming!

The Chapel Hill Police Department has partnered with Orange County Solid Waste Management and University Place to host a Shred-a-Thon from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Thursday, April 27. The event will be held at University Place, 201 S. Estes Drive, in the parking lot adjoining Willow Drive.  This event is a walk-up event. It will not include a drive-through option.

Residents are invited to bring check stubs, pre-approved credit card offers, receipts, old tax documents, and other documents to be shredded.  There is a limit of five banker boxes or bags of paper per person.  Please remove all plastic binders, large metal clips, hanging file folders and other non-paper items from the material to be shredded.

The Shred-a-Thon is free to residents and small businesses of Orange County and that part of the Town of Chapel Hill in Durham County as well as employees of the Towns and Orange County.  For more information, contact the Chapel Hill Police Department at 919-968-2862.

An additional Shred Event will take place Saturday, April 29 in Hillsborough.  The April 29 event will be drive-through only and will be held at the County drop-off recycling site behind Home Depot in Hillsborough at the Hampton Pointe Shopping Center, with cooperation from the Hillsborough Police Department.

These Shred-A-Thons are organized by Orange County Solid Waste Management.





Meet the Author: Tim Crothers

The Friends of the Chapel Hill Public Library are pleased to present Tim Crothers at the Meet the Author Tea on Thursday, April 20 in Meeting Room B at the Library. The event is free and open to the public.  Refreshments will be served at 3:30 p.m., and the program will run from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Chapel Hill readers may recall Tim Crothers best for two books about subjects close to many of their hearts.  One, co-authored with UNC basketball coach Roy Williams, is titled Hard Work; A Life On and Off the Court. The other, The Man Watching: Anson Dorrance and the University of North Carolina Women’s Soccer Dynasty, is the story of UNC’s phenomenal women’s soccer program. He will be talking about his 2016 book The Queen of Katwe; One Girl’s Triumphant Path to Becoming a Chess Champion. This book has been highly successful and has been made into a major motion picture starring Academy Award winners Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo

Tim Crothers was well prepared  to tell this story. A former senior writer for Sports Illustrated, he has taught sports journalism at the University of North Carolina for more than a decade.  Part of his task is to teach students how to interview subjects of different backgrounds and cultures – all of which came in handy as he put his skills to work on this unusual and dramatic story about a young girl named Phiona Mutesi who was born into desperate poverty in the Katwe slums of Kampala, Uganda and somehow became an international chess champion. 

Tim Crothers lives in Chapel Hill with his wife and two children.  He has organized a chess club for his son and daughter’s elementary school here in Chapel Hill. 


Who:        Friends of the Chapel Hill Public Library

What:      Meet the Author Tea: Tim Crothers

Where:    Chapel Hill Public Library Meeting Room B

When:  Thursday April 20: 3:30 p.m. Refreshments; 4-5 p.m. Program





April is Autism Awareness Month

Three events to support families and individuals affected by autism in our community.

April is Autism Awareness Month, a nationwide effort to promote autism awareness, inclusion and self-determination for all, and assure that each person is provided the opportunity to achieve the highest possible quality of life.

Throughout the month, Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation, The Chapel Hill Public Library, The Kidzu Children's Museum, and the Orange/Chatham Chapter of The Autism Society of North Carolina have several programs to support families and individuals affected by autism in our state.

There are three events to note – 

Push, Play Spring Free Concert
7-8 p.m. Friday, April 14
Chapel Hill Community Center
120 S. Estes Drive
Chapel Hill NC, 27514

Music is truly a universal language when Push Play Sing is in the house! Musicians Max Puhala and Berk Ozturk provide hands-on musical enrichment, engagement and expression in the form of participatory music workshops for people with developmental disabilities.

How to Dance in Ohio
2-4 p.m. Saturday, April 15
Chapel Hill Public Library, Meeting Room B
100 Library Drive
Chapel Hill, NC 27514

A free showing of the movie How to Dance in Ohio, followed by discussion and reception. RSVP to and indicate how many people you are bringing.  Open to anyone with an interest in learning more about youth and Autism.

Sensory Friendly Playtime at Kidzu Children’s Museum
5:30–7 p.m. Thursday, April 27
This activity is open to children with any disability age 0-8 and their siblings.

Kidzu Children’s Museum
201 Estes Drive
University Place

Register Here
Hurry and register as this activity will fill up. Siblings are welcome too, but must be registered.

Special Play time open to children with any kind of disability or special need.  Designed so families can enjoy the hands-on exhibit spaces without the extra stimulation found during the busy open hours.    

Cosponsored by the Adapted Recreation and Inclusion program of Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation, Autism Society of North Carolina: Orange/Chatham Chapter and Kidzu Children’s Museum.


Autism Spectrum Disorder is a growing concern in the United States, as evidenced by updated prevalence rates released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. New data from 11 states showed that 1 in 68 children had ASD, a 30 percent increase since a 2012 report, when it was 1 in 88.

In North Carolina, which was one of the 11 states monitored through the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, the prevalence rate is 1 in 58 children. This is an increase of 17 percent from the 2012 report.

Chapel Hill Parks & Recreation enjoys and encourages the participation of all people in its programs and events.

For more information on Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation programs specially designed for people with developmental disabilities, see Specialized Recreation .





The Science Festival Returns on April 22

Free for all ages.

The 2017 UNC Science Expo is a free, family-friendly event offering more than 100 fascinating exhibits with hands-on experiments, riveting demonstrations, laboratory tours, stage entertainment and much more! The festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 22, on East Cameron Avenue on the UNC campus. This NC Science Festival signature event showcasing the wonders of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) is a partnership between Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, the University of North Carolina and the Town of Chapel Hill – a true “town-gown” experience.

The Expo provides an opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research, real-world applications, career opportunities, sustainable living and emerging new products. Be sure to experience the wave pool, wind tunnel, cornstarch march, 3D printing, Google Glass, virtual reality, archeological artifacts and the chance to climb a rock wall and ride a Segway!

UNC Science Expo is part of the North Carolina Science Festival (NCSF)

There will be food trucks on site for lunch, snacks and drinks and don’t forget to bring your own water bottle to enjoy some fresh, clean water from the Blue Green Machine water purifying system. Stop by the Expo Information booth on Cameron Avenue for an event map and other pertinent information.




Town Services





Spring Holiday Service Schedule

Most municipal offices will be closed Friday, April 14.

RESIDENTIAL REFUSE COLLECTION: Yard waste will not be collected Friday.

CURBSIDE RECYCLING: No change in schedule

COMMERCIAL REFUSE COLLECTION: Trash will not be collected Friday. Friday’s trash will be collected by the end of the week.

ORANGE COUNTY LANDFILL will be open Friday and closed Saturday, April 15.

SOLID WASTE CONVENIENCE CENTERS will be open Friday and Saturday, and will be closed Sunday, April 16.

CHAPEL HILL TRANSIT will operate on a Saturday schedule on Friday. The following Saturday routes will operate: CM, CW, D, FG, JN and T. On Friday and Saturday, the Hillsborough Express 420 Route and Weekend U and NU routes will not operate, EZ Rider services will end at 6:52 p.m. and Safe Rides will not operate.

HOUSING: Office and Maintenance Division will be closed. For emergency maintenance services, call 919-968-2855.

CHAPEL HILL PUBLIC LIBRARY will be closed Sunday, April 16.

PARKING SERVICES: The Parking office will be closed.

PARKS AND RECREATION: The Plant Road office will be closed.

For more information on Town Holidays, visit   






Homestead Aquatics Center to Open April 17

Good news! The leak in the Homestead Aquatics Center pool has been found and repaired; the pool has been filled, heated, and regulated; and the pool is scheduled to reopen in less than two weeks!

“We want to thank the community for its patience during the repair,” said Parks and Recreation Director Jim Orr. “We’d also like to say a special thank you to the community partners that allowed special use in their facilities during our closure: Hollow Rock, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro YMCA, the Orange County Sportsplex, and the Bowman Gray Memorial Pool on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill. We understand some of you had to change your routine during this time, and we appreciate your flexibility.”

The Orange County Health Department has given tentative approval to reopen the Aquatics Center, pending a full inspection. This type of inspection is regularly done twice a year. With final approval from the health department, the Aquatics Center will open at 5:30 a.m. Monday, April 17, and continue on a regular schedule. Pool schedules can be found at

The Parks and Recreation Department expects an approval from the final inspection. If a delay is presented, a new opening date will be announced by the Town of Chapel Hill.

Things May Look A Little Different
Due to the location of the leak, additional work is required to fill the access point, which is located under a portion of the pool deck. The contractor that will perform the work isn’t available until eight weeks from now.

In the meantime, a wall has been constructed to separate public access from the repair site. That wall has been approved by the health department and will remain in place until the repair access point has been completed.

For more information, contact Parks and Recreation Director Jim Orr at 919-968-2785 or








Public Input: Updating County Transit Plans

 Orange and Durham counties are updating their transit plans and want public input about the future of transit in our community.

First, learn more about the progress made since the original plans were approved and the projects and services proposed in the updated plans at a drop-in public workshop.

The workshop scheduled for Chapel Hill will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, April 13, in the Council Chamber of Town Hall, 405 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

You can also share your comments at a public hearing at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 18, at the Southern Human Services Center, 2501 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill.

Additional public drop-in sessions are scheduled in Hillsborough and Durham. See the flyer.

For more information, visit




Chapel Hill Transit Logo

Chapel Hill Transit Saturday FG and T Routes Detoured April 22

The Chapel Hill Transit Saturday T and FG routes will be detoured on Saturday, April 22, 2017, due to the annual UNC Science Expo and the Tar Heel 10 Miler.

FG Route

The FG route will be detoured from 8:50 a.m. through 10 a.m. along Fordham Boulevard, right on Manning Drive, right on South Columbia Street, right on South Road and left on Raleigh Street to continue the normal route.

The westbound bus stops on Raleigh Road from Greenwood Road to Country Club Road and on South Road from Country Club Road to Raleigh Street will not be served during these times. Customers may board the detoured bus at the alternate bus stops at the Glen Lennox Shopping Center and on Raleigh Street.

Saturday T Route

The Saturday T route will not serve Franklin Street (Varsity) and Hillsborough Street from 8:15 a.m. through 9:13 a.m. and will be detoured along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to South Columbia Street. 

The Saturday T route will not serve Cameron Avenue from 8:15 a.m. through 5:51 p.m. and will be detoured along Pittsboro Street, McCauley Street, South Columbia to Franklin Street.

While every attempt will be made to maintain normal schedules, Chapel Hill Transit is advising customers to allow extra travel time and expect minor delays. The detour and any delays will also impact Next­Bus predictions for the route.

For more information on the Expo, visit

For more information on the Tar Heel 10 Miler, visit

Chapel Hill Transit is the public transportation provider that serves Chapel Hill, Carrboro and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. For complete information about Chapel Hill Transit services, schedules, route changes or directions to the nearest Chapel Hill Transit stop, visit us at, email or call a customer service representative at 919-485-7433.


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