I’m a discarded water bottle. Someone tossed me onto the ground at the Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Revolution Park near Irwin Creek. I didn’t start in the creek, but when it started to rain, runoff took me there.Continue Reading
If you want to try some new adventures this year, keep it local and keep it cheap! Here are 10 cheap things to do in 2020 for under $20, all right here in Mecklenburg County. Whatever you do, tag us on social media so we can follow along!Continue Reading
If you’ve ever wondered where your Christmas tree goes when it leaves the curb, watch and learn!
Always recycle right. Crews won’t pick up artificial trees. They can’t be recycled and will end up in the landfill. Crews also won’t pick up live trees with lights or ornaments. For more information about composting and recycling, visit wipeoutwaste.com.
Homeschool doesn’t just mean learning at home. One of the major benefits is flexibility about where and how your family can expand their minds! Mecklenburg County has a lot of resources for supplementing your child’s education. With 21 departments, there are endless ways to make Mecklenburg County a homeschool helper. Maybe you’ve seen our best kept secrets and that got your brain going. Well here are seven more options to get you started:Continue Reading
We’ve all heard the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” There’s a reason for that! Good nutrition is vital to good health and disease prevention. And it’s essential to “growing up big and strong” as my grandmother used to say. Eating nutritious foods (along with a little exercise, of course) can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Those are some of the leading causes of death in our County and the country.
Seems easy enough, right? If I eat healthy food, I will be healthier. But it’s not that simple. Not everyone has access to healthy food. I know! It’s hard to believe that in 2020, there are people in our community who don’t have access to a grocery store to get the foods they need to live healthy lives.
An Idea is Planted
Reggie Singleton, one of Public Health’s policy coordinators, was inspired by the fruit tree orchards he grew up with in the Sea Islands of Charleston, SC. He suggested partnering with other community organizations to install orchards and a system for distributing the food to the communities with food insecurity. And the Edible Landscape Project was born!
Signs of Success
With support and partnership from community organizations, Public Health has established four orchards at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church, Rockwell AME Zion Church, Reeder Memorial Baptist Church, Faith CME Church. The orchards produce plums, figs, pears, peaches and persimmons. They have even expanded to plant seasonal herbs and vegetables like squash, string beans, tomatoes, and cucumbers. Neighbors harvest, process and distribute food to nearby community members directly or through the church food pantry. To date, their efforts have supplied fresh, nutritious food to over 25,000 people in the County. Here’s a look inside how the orchards work.
Earlier this year, the Edible Landscapes Project received a Best In Category award from the National Association of Counties. This project combined with farmers markets and healthy corner stores is helping communities get better access to healthy food.
City or County? That’s a question we get a lot when it comes to the services that we provide to our residents. We can’t say we’re surprised – considering that the City of Charlotte is a part of Mecklenburg County, it can be easy to get us mixed up. Throw six more towns into the equation and it can get even more confusing!
A good way to tell the difference is by knowing the types of services each agency provides. But, there are a few instances where it’s going to seem like some of our services overlap. For example, all three of us (City, County, and the Towns) play a role in solid waste. However, even though we share a similar name, the functions of each solid waste department are very different.Continue Reading
Written by Kristen Haas, Environmental Educator at Park and Recreation
Don’t worry, I was doing it wrong, too. Until I went on a tour of the Mecklenburg County recycling center that processes curbside recycling bins (the MRF, which we insiders pronounce “Murph”), that is. I learned so much and left feeling empowered to make easy changes that would save money by recycling the right way.
During the tour, I kept thinking about this quote:
Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.Maya Angelou
So, today I want to share my biggest take-away messages and encourage you all to “do better” too.Continue Reading
Whether you realize it or not, there are many things you probably know about Mecklenburg County government. For starters, you are probably aware that the County is governed by the nine-member Board of County Commissioners. You may also know that Mecklenburg’s day-to-day operations are managed by County Manager Dena R. Diorio. Chances are you are also familiar with a few County services such as Public Health, Department of Social Services or Park and Recreation.
That doesn’t come close to being everything about us, though. There’s so much more that we do and within all of our departments there are so many programs and initiatives that it can be hard to list them all out. But, we do have a few “best kept secrets” that we think you should know!Continue Reading
“Remember… Only YOU can prevent forest fires!”
The sound of Smokey Bear’s voice declaring this memorable message of fire prevention still conjures a sense of responsibility in me. Can you hear it? Visualize his furry finger pointing right at YOU? The wildfire prevention campaign began in 1944 and is the longest-running public service advertising campaign in U.S. history (and is based on a real-life bear)!
Thanks to Smokey, we all know the devastation that fire can bring to any natural area. But, did you know that prescribed fire is an important part of maintaining diverse and healthy ecosystems? Believe it or not, they’re a tool we use right here in Mecklenburg County and I got to tag along for one at Latta Plantation Nature Preserve.
I guess I should begin this blog post with a “true confession.”
While I’ve never seen the movie “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” I truly believe that I probably have a lot in common with the main character in the film. I love to shop. Shopping provides an instant boost of serotonin to my brain, taking me to a very euphoric place. It’s my version of chocolate, minus the calories. Some would say I love it a little too much, with many family members and friends having vowed to never enter a mall with me again in this lifetime. I think that is a little dramatic on their part, but to each their own.
And while I am not sure if my passion for bargain hunting fits the clinical diagnosis of being a true “shopaholic,” it is probably safe to say that I could find another way to spend my time and money.
So, the holiday season has truly become my favorite time of the year, but for totally selfish reasons. While I love the beautiful seasonal decor, festive parties, and a convivial atmosphere that only the holidays can bring; this is also the time of year when I can do what I love, for whom I love, under the disguise of giving. And with every purchase I bring home and with each package that awaits at my doorstep, another gift is checked off my holiday list – and a secret passion has been fulfilled.