Chapel Hill eNews

Post Date:09/14/2017 11:23 AM
Chapel Hill eNews


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Up Front


The Mini Park is complete!


Relax and enjoy downtown Chapel Hill at the new Mini Park in front of Chapel Hill Tire at 502 W. Franklin St. Let us know what you think! Read more.

From Town Hall

Town-Sponsored Events


Public Safety News





Up Front



TOWNweek has been posted!





Things to do in Chapel Hill

Feature from the Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau

Opening Reception: Stories & Quilts 
Friday, Sept. 15
6 to 8 p.m. 
Center for the Study of the American South, 410 East Franklin St Chapel Hill (919) 962-5665

From Isolation to War: Stories & Quilts of Native American Veterans Opening Reception at Love House & Hutchins Forum, 410 E. Franklin Street, Chapel Hill. This fall the Center will display sixteen Native veteran story quilts that draw on interviews, journals, audio, videos, and photographs to honor Native American veterans and depict the impact service had on their lives.  




Franklin Street, Chapel Hill

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



Several construction projects bring changes to Chapel Hill (The Daily Tar Heel)

Downtown Chapel Hill will get a new hotel this fall — along with a newly refurbished Porthole Alley, now a pedestrian-only walkway. A grocery store is slated to begin construction in 2018 and streets all over town are being repaved. Read more:


GoTriangle goes green: Electric buses could be in NC's future (The Daily Tar Heel)

Low-emission electric buses could be coming to North Carolina. GoTriangle is applying for a regional grant that would allow for the company and its partners to receive funding for electric buses. Read more:


Wegmans grocery store goes to hearing in Chapel Hill Town Hall on Wednesday night (The Herald-Sun)

You’ll have more opportunities to shop in town if a Wegmans grocery store is approved next month for U.S. 15-501. Read more:


Chapel Hill and Carrboro remember 9/11 (The Daily Tar Heel)

Sixteen years after the events of Sept. 11, 2001, Chapel Hill and Carrboro held local events in remembrance of 9/11. Read more:


Events Held Across Chapel Hill Remembering 9-11 Anniversary (

Remembrance events were held across our community on Monday to commemorate the 16th anniversary of the terror attacks on September 11, 2001. Read more:


Timeline Established for Orange County Early Voting (

The Orange County Board of Elections has laid out a timeline for this year’s municipal elections. Read more:


Chapel Hill Ranked Among “Best American Foodie Towns” (

Living in the Chapel Hill – and Carrboro – area means easy access to find food and drink across a wide spectrum of tastes and price points. Read more:





From Town Hall




Project Update: Chapel Hill Tire Mini Park

As part of the Town’s Downtown 2020 Work Plan, the Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership and the Town of Chapel Hill are partnering with Chapel Hill Tire and the Hargraves Center to experiment with ideas to activate the public space in front of their location at 502 W. Franklin St. The result is the new Tire Mini Park open now.

The Tire Mini Park is an experiment to determine whether the amenities provided are used and the space activated. Three bike racks have been installed in a coral in the street between the existing parking space and the curb; sets of recycled tire planters create a visual barrier between the seating area and the street; and curved benches have been installed as well.

Users of the park are invited to submit their input to

Tell us with your photos “I tried the Tire Mini Park” at @ChapelHillGov on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook!





SOLAR KICKOFF at East Chapel Hill High

Under a sunny sky on the freshman hill at East Chapel Hill High, students gathered to celebrate the hard work and risk-taking by four of their fellow Wildcats. The Solar Kickoff on Wednesday, September 13 represented the official announcement of a Duke Energy Carolinas/NC GreenPower Schools Going Solar grant to install solar panels at the school. The award also includes monitoring equipment, training for teachers and a curriculum for students.

“The kickoff was both a culmination, celebrating the work of Megan, Emily, Connor, Michael and the Solar Panel Project participants, and also just the beginning of moving towards a renewable energy future at East and CHCCS,” said Dan Schnitzer, District Sustainability Coordinator.

The grant application was competitive. More than three dozen schools sought the grants; East Chapel Hill High was one of seven winning schools. “The students have led the charge from day one,” Schnitzer said, “finding the grant, organizing themselves, showing up, working hard and not being deterred or distracted.”

The four students came together during the spring of 2016. Emily Liu and Megan Doherty had participated in UNC’s Institute for the Environment program Climate LEAP where they first discussed sustainability with CHCCS school board member Annetta Streater. Connor Diaz and Michael Swers were members of Eastainability, an East club who joined forces with Liu and Doherty to create the Solar Panel Project. As Doherty said to the kickoff audience, “We were a small club with huge dreams.”

Streater, who also spoke at the kickoff event, directed the students to Schnitzer. He first asked the students to conduct an energy audit at ECHHS and then shepherded the grant-writing project to its completion. He claimed he had little more to do with the grant application than checking for grammar and providing the tax ID number, but the students laughed at their mentor’s modesty. “He gave us energy and motivation,” Doherty said. They had reviewed examples of professional grant proposals, but Schnitzer encouraged them to look at well-written student proposals as models. “He was so knowledgeable about how to write grants.”

Once the panels are installed in 2018, students will be able to monitor energy production and consumption at East, gathering real-time input data. Representing Duke Energy, district manager Indira Everett congratulated the project participants, and shared news about the expansion of renewable resources in North Carolina. The state currently ranks second in solar energy installations, after California, and Duke Energy has invested over five billion dollars in solar and wind projects.

Vicky McCann, vice-president of NC GreenPower, shared her excitement about the impact their nonprofit can have on North Carolina schools and students who use the technology. NC GreenPower piloted a Solar Schools program in 2015 and collaborates with Duke Energy to provide the grants and panel installations.

Superintendent Dr. Pam Baldwin said that when she was a science teacher, this was the kind of experience she longed for her students to have every day. Learning from the sustainability initiative will be “relevant, engaging and fun,” she said. “Too often What If’s prevent us from doing what is truly amazing.”

 “This project has definitely influenced my college field of study,” said Liu. “I want to go into environmental science and the STEM field.”

“Thank you for setting the bar,” Mayor Pam Hemminger said to the four students. "This is truly a great example of our young people leading the way toward a renewable energy platform for our community."

The students said they hope that the solar panels will provide a model of sustainability for CHCCS and the community, and show that youth voices can and will be heard. As one of them noted, every time future students walk by the panels, hopefully they’ll think about what they can accomplish.

“They embody the mindset of creating the change they want to see,” Schnitzer said. “I’m extremely proud to have worked with these students and the staff throughout the school and district that supported this project.”






(Pictured above is a graduation class from a past digital literacy course.)  


MEDIA ADVISORY: Public Housing Residents to Receive Free Computers

 Twenty public housing residents from the Town of Chapel Hill will graduate from a computer skills training program and receive a free computer at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 19, at the Chapel Hill Public Library.

The course is a continuing collaboration between the Town and the Kramden Institute, a Durham non-profit. The goal of the course has been to teach public housing residents key job-seeking skills and related computer skills. The class has provided hands-on practice of real-world applications of the skills they have been learning.

Participants who complete the program will receive a free laptop computer, if they haven't received one from Kramden previously. The Town received a grant from Google Fiber to run this program.






Are You Prepared?

A situation that can pose a threat to the safety of you and your family may not give you adequate time to prepare. Make your plan now, and constantly revisit it to keep it fresh.

September is National Preparedness Month.

Three quick things to remember:

  1. who to call
  2. where to go
  3. what to pack

Customize Your Emergency Alerts

In order to put your plan in motion as quickly as possible, you have to receive timely emergency warnings. Sign up to receive OC Alerts, Orange County's emergency alert system, which is customizable from the types of messages you receive to the devices on which you receive them.

Resources has resources available to help you prepare, from the mindset of preparedness to being ready to take action. North Carolina also has a portal with helpful preparedness tips at

This year's National Preparedness Month theme is "Disasters Don’t Plan Ahead. You Can.”

Week 1:  September 1-9  Make a Plan for Yourself, Family and Friends
Week 2:  September 10-16 Plan to Help Your Neighbor and Community
Week 3:  September 17-23 Practice and Build Out Your Plans
Week 4:  September 24-30  Get Involved! Be a part of Something Larger

Ready was launched by the Department of Homeland Security in February 2003 and is a national public service campaign designed to educate and empower the American people to prepare for, respond to and mitigate emergencies, including natural and man-made disasters.

Stay Connected

The Town of Chapel Hill provides information about services during emergencies on its website, Follow the Town’s social media accounts for updates: Twitter - @ChapelHillGov@ChapelHillEM@ChapelHillFD, and; and Instagram – ChapelHillGov.





Wireless Telecommunications Public Information Meeting

The public is invited to provide input to help guide the Wireless Master Plan and Ordinance at a public information meeting to be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 21, in Meeting Room A of the Chapel Hill Public Library.

The plan is part of the Wireless Telecommunications Initiative (WTI), a Town of Chapel Hill project that will address anticipated changes in wireless technology and the need for regulatory improvements.

Wireless communications and the associated infrastructure is essential to our community as regards basic day-to-day services, educational, public safety, entertainment, and business needs.

The public process will provide Chapel Hill the necessary road map and guidelines to manage the Town’s wireless telecommunications.

For more information, see




Town-Sponsored Events




Meet the Author Tea: Zeynep Tufekci

The Friends of Chapel Hill Public Library are pleased to present Zeynep Tufekci at the Meet the Author Tea on Thursday, Sept. 21 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 to 5 p.m. She will be discussing her new book, Twitter and Tear Gas; The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest.

Zeynep Tufekci is an associate professor at the UNC School of Information and Library Science with an affiliate appointment in the Department of Sociology She is also a faculty associate at the Harvard Beckman Center for Internet and Society.  She writes for the general public as well as for the scholarly community.  Her book is a “big picture” look at social movements in a time of great social upheaval.  It includes many anecdotes to catch and hold the reader’s attention and important arguments to help them understand world events today. 

She speaks from direct experience, combining on-the-ground interviews with insightful analysis. She describes how the internet helped the Zapatista uprisings in Mexico, the necessity of remote Twitter users to organize medical supplies during Arab Spring, the refusal to use bullhorns in the Occupy Movement that started in New York, and the empowering effect of tear gas in Istanbul’s Gezi Park. These details from life inside social movements complete a moving investigation of authority, technology, and culture—and offer essential insights into the future of governance.



Who:        Friends of the Chapel Hill Public Library

What:      Meet the Author Tea:  Zeynep Tufekci

Where:    Chapel Hill Public Library Meeting Room B

When:  Thursday, Sept. 21…..3:30 p.m. Refreshments   4-5 p.m. Program





Chapel Hill’s Festifall Arts Festival in Downtown Chapel Hill Oct. 1

Explore the Triangle music and dance scene at Chapel Hill’s Festifall Arts Festival, featuring performance art, music and dance that will appeal to all ages and tastes. Nestled among artists and community organization booths, you will find three performance areas with many different acts from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.  (see performance schedule at 

On the INDY Week Main Stage, expect a wide range of musical genres. Counterclockwise String Band starts the day with a style of bluegrass that is both compellingly new and refreshingly familiar. Next up, Chaquis Maliq will deliver the sound of Eccentric Tasteful Grooves and Honey Soul to her listeners. The Pinkerton Raid makes ebullient, dynamic indie pop, followed by the Loreleis, an all-female a cappella group. Next up is Lonnie Walker with his entertaining blend of rootsy Americana and dance-party punk-rock, Ellis Dyson & the Shambles, the six-piece, swingin’ jazz band from Chapel Hill known for their whiskey-soaked, foot-stompin’ sound  and Tea Cup Gin, known for their original indie-jazz music influenced by an eclectic blend of early 20th century musical genres

The 97.9 The Hill Stage provides hands-on and up-close participation for all ages. Enjoy a line-up of comedy, magic, dance ensembles, and more! Keep your eyes open for The Cane Creek Cloggers with some very entertaining Appalachian-style clog dancing. Then the inspirational UNC Moonlight Hip Hop dance group will perform, followed by The Chapel Hill School of Musical Performing Arts. It is our pleasure to welcome the Spin Man to the Local Motion Stage--his basketball spinning skills rival that of the Harlem Globetrotters. Our very own Chapel Hill Fire Department will perform their fun, musical puppet show and Huepa Culture & Arts will represent Latina American traditions through dance and theater. The day will end with the Dancers of Unity bringing us together in song and dance.

The Local 506 Stage brings more of a local flavor with a mix of folk, indie rock and hip-hop. Kicking off the day will be the veteran band Sound System 7, then check out (J) Rowdy, a live hip hop group fronted by J Rowdy, who has been featured on NPR, DJ Booth, Indy Week, and various national publications. You can also look forward to the stylish music of David Wimbish and Stephanie Morgan as well as the danceable folk music of the Tan & Sober Gentlemen and Hudson & Haw.

Event hours: Sunday 12-6 p.m. 

Admission: Free

Parking: Free Sunday parking is available throughout downtown in municipal lots and street side spots. For more information and locations visit www.parkonthehill.comBiking to Festifall is encouraged!

Park & Ride FREE to Festifall:  for more information, visit

For more information about the event:, call 919-968-2878 or email  

Only persons requiring the use of an assistance animal shall be allowed to bring any animal onto public sidewalks and streets which have been closed for the purpose of holding street fairs, races, or other community events. All animals are subject to the town animal control ordinance.

Thank you to our Official Sponsors: 97.9 The Hill, Local 506, Chapel Hill Magazine, our Festival Sponsors INDY Week, WUNC, News & Observer, Berkshire Chapel Hill, and finally our Event Sponsors Champion Windows, Passanantes Home Foods, LulaRoeAlley, All American Gutter, Mr. Roof, Grace Church, Fitch Lumber.








Chapel Hill Transit Logo

Chapel Hill Transit Detours Saturday T Route at East Chapel Hill High School Sept. 16

Chapel Hill Transit will detour the Saturday T route on Saturday, Sept. 16, due to the Back to School Festival at East Chapel Hill High School. The Saturday T route will continue on Weaver Dairy Road, returning to Weaver Dairy via the roundabout. The route will not go into the parking lot at East Chapel Hill High School. Customers may board the bus on Weaver Dairy Road at the entrance to the school.

For complete information about Chapel Hill Transit services, schedules, route changes or directions to the nearest stop, visit us at, email, or call a customer service representative at 919-485-7433.





Public Safety News




Apply Now: Community Police Academy

The Chapel Hill Police Department will host its Community Police Academy beginning Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017. We will accept applications through Friday, Sept. 22, 2017.

The Community Police Academy is an action-packed, two-day event providing community members with an “inside look” at how their police department functions. The Academy is designed to increase understanding and awareness of the role of the Chapel Hill Police Department and the day-to-day life of a police officer through computer simulated “hands-on” activities and engaging discussions.

Participants will experience:

  • Exercises simulating real police scenarios (computer simulations)
  • Officer Equipment demonstrations
  • Arrest procedures
  • Use of Force discussions
  • Social/Mental Health Issues
  • Citizen Complaints/Internal Affairs
  • Police Canine (K9) Program demonstrations
  • Investigations
  • Special Emergency Response Capabilities
  • ...and more

The Community Police Academy is open to anyone 16 years of age or older.

Anyone wishing to attend the Community Police Academy must complete an application at by Friday, Sept. 22, 2017.




Recycling shredded paper 

Plan for Fall Shred-A-Thons

Two free shred- a-thons will be held by Orange County Solid Waste Management this fall in cooperation with local law enforcement.

The first will be Thursday, Oct. 12, at University Place behind the Silver Spot Theater off Willow Drive in Chapel Hill. This is a park and walk-up service. Chapel Hill Police officers will be there to assist in the security of personal documents.

The second will be Saturday, Oct. 14, at the Recycling Drop-off site behind Home Depot at Hampton Pointe in Hillsborough, with drive-through service. 

Both events are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.   Events are restricted to residents and small businesses in Orange County and that part of the Town of Chapel Hill in Durham County, as well as employees of the County and the Towns of Carrboro, Chapel Hill and Hillsborough.

This year each participant is limited to four bags or boxes of confidential paper, reduced from five at previous events due to overloading of truck capacity. No more trucks can be provided by the contractor for these events as they’re already deployed for business recycling.  Participants can do their part by limiting the type of paper they bring for shredding to only those documents that are truly confidential in nature such as financial or medical records. 

“It has been observed at past events,” notes Blair Pollock, Orange County Solid Waste Planner, “that many customers bring magazines, bulk business mail and even newspaper for shredding along with confidential paper.  That takes up the space needed for genuinely sensitive documents in the shredding truck.”   

Non-confidential paper should be recycled in blue carts or drop off sites, not taken to the shred-a-thon.  A name and address alone do not constitute confidential information.  Leave out the folders, magazines, envelopes, brochures, and other non-confidential paper.  This will help ensure capacity for everyone’s truly confidential paper.  Check out an infographic for details!  Incidental tape and staples are OK; but please--  no plastics, metals, digital media, and other non-paper items either. 

These free shredding events are being sponsored by the Edward Jones Office of Tom Struckmeyer in Hillsborough, and the Local Government Federal Credit Union.

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