Irisol Gonzalez is Brightening Charlotte One Colored Pencil at a Time
HUGumentary: Irisol is Coloring the Queen City
You know visual artist Irisol Gonzalez. At least, you know her work. You’ve enjoyed her murals across Charlotte, viewed her pieces at C3Lab or zoomed by a ArtPop Street Gallery billboard featuring her work. But, you may not know the story of her 8-foot self-portrait she made with hundreds and hundreds of colored pencils. A HUG Micro-Grant helped her get the supplies she needed to do it and she told that story, and more, on QC@3 on WBTV. Watch her HUGumentary here.
“Lights” Still Burning Bright at the Whitewater Center
The holiday lights have been packed up and put away for another year across the city, but there is still holiday magic alive in the air (and the woods) at the US National Whitewater Center. “Lights,” an immersive light exhibit installed along a half-mile trail opened just before Thanksgiving and is still burning brightly every night from 6:00 – 10:00pm through mid-February. There’s still time to experience it and we’ve asked its creator, artist Meredith Connelly, to share her inspiration and process for bringing “Lights” to life.
The Good Stuff: “Placemaking is Profoundly Personal”
PHOTO CREDIT: Grant Baldwin Photography
Placemaking and equitable development are at the top of many Charlotte minds right now. How do we ensure that everyone has the space and opportunity to succeed, that they’re heard and seen and that places of deep-rooted significance to the people of Charlotte are addressed with dignity, honor and care as we grow?
Last Saturday, Jay Pitter, an award-winning placemaker who leads processes around the world focused on the equitable design, programming and policy of public spaces, visited Charlotte to share her experience and perspective on these issues and more at “Building A Charlotte for All” at UNC-Charlotte Uptown. It was an informative — and, sometimes brutally honest — talk. As Pitter said, “Every time I show up, I’m going to make you uncomfortable.”
If you were not able to attend, click below for some highlights captured by The Biscuit.
January HUGs and Bolts (of Inspiration)
PHOTO CREDIT: Heather Liebler Photography
At each meeting of CreativeMornings/Charlotte, Torrie Savage of #thesavageway presents Queen City creatives a moss art “Bolt of Inspiration” for their outstanding work. In January, local photographer and founder of Yard Art Day, Deborah Triplett, was honored for being “living embodiment of putting creative energy into action in our city.”
Other creatives were presented with $250 HUG Micro-Grants (“little love bombs of cash”) to nudge forward their for-profit or nonprofit endeavors. This month’s HUGgees were:
- Jordan Dollard – Front Porch Sundays
- Jillian Mueller – iMakeCLT (C3 Lab)
- Jenny Melick – Roses & Azalea
Donate to the HUG grant program or apply to be a February HUG recipient.
The Kannapolis Intimidators minor league baseball team recently changed their name to the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers. With this new name comes a new mascot and according to WFAE’s Dashiell Coleman, the Cannon Ballers decided on mustached baseball named Boomer. Allegedly the mascot’s name — which was voted on by the fans — has nothing to do with the recent phrase Millennials and Gen Zers use to disagree with Baby Boomers, but we decided to check in with a few completely non-existent people to see their thoughts on the matters: Was this name change done to appeal to “young folk?”
Thorgy Thor and the Thorchestra
Jan. 17 and 18 at 7:30pm
This evening at the symphony will be a total drag… in the best way possible! Thorgy Thor, of RuPaul’s Drag Race fame, will be turning the Charlotte Symphony into the Thorchestra this weekend for two fun, thoughtful, and fabulous performances. She’s a classically trained musician, skilled at the violin, viola, and cello. You’ll hear music from all of the great classical composers you’d expect, such as Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Bruno Mars and Lady Gaga! The “Queen of Classical Music” is bringing her theatrics to the Queen City and trust us, you don’t want to miss the shenanigans. Click here to get your tickets.
But wait… there’s more! Click here to learn about 7 more CLT events.
Founder & Head Coach
Do Greater Foundation
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William “Coach” McNeely is native of Charlotte, NC. He’s an entrepreneur, non-profit executive and a former Apple Market Development Executive and Educator. After a successful career, he left Corporate America to teach technology solutions to middle school students. (Yikes!) He’s a speaker and author at Evan Eli Media, LLC. Last year, he received a double lung transplant. He lives his life in commitment to helping people reach their full potential through leadership, vision and creativity so that they can do greater things they never imagined possible.
Four Insta-Picks from The Pandalorian
Charlotte’s blessed with some truly incredible Instagram accounts. But, you can only follow so many before your thumbs fall off. Where do you start? Well, we ask a different Queen City creative each week to recommend four choice accounts. This week, we ask “The Pandalorian” (who may or may not be editor Tim Miner), a masked character who administers fierce and encouraging on-stage hugs to those who give excellent 30-second presentations each month at CreativeMornings/Charlotte. After polishing off some eucalyptus leaves & pizza, the bear says you should care about:
Banker by Day. Theatre Artist by Night.
Yesterday (January 15) was National Hat Day. Charlottean Becky Schultz knows a little something about hats. Especially wearing too many of them at all times. As a professional banker who is also the executive director of Three Bone Theater, she is in a constant state of tackling challenges in the boardroom and on the stage. That’s why she’s the perfect person for the first installation of “My Three Biggest Challenges” our new feature on the obstacles Queen City creatives are addressing right now to share their passions with our city. Here’s her first challenge:
Shop local. Drink local. Attend local.
Charlotteans love buying 704 gear and sipping local craft beer. But, when it comes to their entertainment, they tend to either stay home (#netflixandchill) or they go see a national performer. Put on some pants, check out the ASC Culture Guide and go support local theatre (or dance or music or visual art, etc.).
We’re starting a new section called “Something Old, Something New,” where we share a new restaurant/brewery/venue/shop/etc. that has been taking the Queen City by storm and pair it with a similar #OGclt spot that’s been holding it down in Charlotte for years, sometimes decades. This isn’t a competition. It’s a way to add two awesome spots to your radar.
SOMETHING NEW: ACE No. 3
If you’re in the mood for a good burger, the hottest place in town might just be Ace No. 3. The burger joint opened on Belmont Ave last October and has been selling burgers like hotcakes. (Or hot burgers, maybe?) The menu is pretty simple, but delicious. They have burgers, fries, onion rings, soft serve, shakes and beer. You can’t go wrong with that.
Do you like what you hear and love what you tasted? How about you try…
SOMETHING OLD: South 21 Drive-In
Since 1955, this OG CLT drive-in has been a staple in the diet of any Charlotte burger lover. Home of the Super Boy Hamburger, South 21 has had thousands upon thousands of cars pull into the lot located at 3101 Independence Blvd to order that sweet, burgery goodness. The menu doesn’t stop at the burgers, though. Each of their plates, sandwiches and desserts are even tastier than the last. We’d recommend their onion rings as the perfect companion to any South 21 meal.
Back in 1945, a small movie theater known as the Astor Theatre was built near the textile mills in North Charlotte. The theater was built as a source of entertainment for the members of the mill community that developed around the mills. Over time, the theatre shifted from showing campy B-movies in the 1950s and 60s to exclusively showing raunchy X-rated films in the 70s. The Astor Theatre was on the decline and eventually shut down in the late 70s. For periods of the 80s, it was used to house church services until it found its new purpose. In 1997, the theatre was converted into a live performance/music venue that’s still rocking to this day under its new name… the Neighborhood Theatre!
Bonus: The mural above the theater marquee was painted by William Puckett, the same fella who painted the JackBeagle’s mural that features 274 members of the NoDa community.
Directions: 511 E 36th St, Charlotte, NC 28205
This Queen City exploration is powered by OrthoCarolina.
Don’t go around hungry. If you missed the last batch of The Biscuit, don’t worry. We’ve kept it warm for you … and full of satisfying Southern sassiness. Click here to dig in, y’all.
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