Morning Minute: Tuesday, August 20, 2019

News About Town: Matthews Police, Kiwanis Club, Matthews HELP Center, and several area business sponsors got together Friday evening at the Matthews Sportsplex for the annual Matthews Gives Back to School event! The event included food and games, but the focal point was a school supply drive. By gathering donations from the community and sponsors, the group was able to fill 160 backpacks full of school supplies. Way to go Matthews neighbors, and thank you Matthews Police for taking the initiative to help those in need in our community.

News Around Town: There are few gravel roads left in Matthews, but for a little while yesterday, I-485 in Matthews was just that. Large rocks lay scattered across three lanes of traffic on the interstate between the John Street and Independence Boulevard exits, it was unclear how they ended up on the road. Matthews Public Works and NCDOT cleared the rocks and traffic resumed by 1:30 pm.

One Good Thing: Saturday, August 24, from 11 am-2 pm, Novant Health will celebrate their silver anniversary in Matthews. The all-ages 25th-anniversary celebration includes services such as skin cancer education, and the mobile mammography unit. Don’t worry. It’s not all medical fun. The event includes live music, refreshments, a NY style ice cart, and booths with community partners the Matthews Library and Matthews Rotary Club. Find the fun in the Novant Health Matthews Medical Center parking lot.

Morning Minute: Monday, August 19, 2019

News About Town: Touch-A-Truck was this past Saturday in Stumptown Park. Over 700 people attended the event for hands-on activities with trucks, cars, motorcycles, and Public Works’ machinery. Attendees also had the opportunity to chat with town staff, get a balloon animal (or sword, in some cases), and Kona Ice to cool down the masses on that very hot and sweaty day. Police K9 units wowed the crowd with tracking and sniffing abilities, and the Fire Department flexed their truck muscles with Ladder Truck 124 in full 101-foot extension.


News Around Town: Early Voting for the September 10th Special Election begins on Wednesday, August 21. Early Voting will only be available at Hal Marshall library on the first day, and will open at additional sites - including Matthews Library - the day after. Visit the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections site to view early voting hours and locations. Visit the North Carolina State Board of Elections site to check your registration and view your sample ballot. Reminder: if you're not registered to vote, you can still fill out registration paperwork and vote during early voting!

One Good Thing: Warm up your hugging arms for August 24. Mount Moriah is hosting their 4th Annual “Hug-A-Cop” Event from. As a former NC Highway Patrolman, Reverend Larry Whitley began this event as a way to connect law enforcement to the community. The event is a collaboration between Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church, Matthews Presbyterian, and Matthews UMC. Stop by Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church located at 381 Crestdale Road in Matthews from 4 til 8 pm and show your gratitude for Matthews police, first responders, and public safety employees.

Leo's Rage

You can't see him
but he's everywhere
mixing his potion of
heat and humidity and
if that wasn't enough
like a wizard he can
whip up thunderstorms
on a moments notice just
so you know it’s Leo's turn,
after all it’s August as he roars
in time with each strike of
lightning and as if we haven't
had enough he finds delight
knowing thermometers are
breaking new records while
beads of sweat become our
armor against his rage I'll be
thinking about the cooler days
and nights of autumn and crickets


By Lorraine Stark

Morning Minute: Friday, August 16, 2019

News About Town: #LoveMatthews is still in full swing, and this week the focus is on arts. If you haven’t participated, today’s your last chance to take part in the art tour around town. Here are the instructions according to the Town’s Facebook page:

  1. Go to the Matthews Community Center (100 E. McDowell Street) to pick up an Art Walk Challenge Guide.

  2. Begin your mission to find the 12 pieces of public art on the list.

  3. Take a selfie with each work of art (all 12), post the photo to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using Complete the challenge, and you’ll be entered to win a $100 gift card to a Matthews business of your choice and four tickets to a performance by the Matthews Playhouse.

Please note, the Matthews Community Center is open today from 9:00 am – 8:00 pm. Even if you can’t participate in the giveaway, find time to tour the art.

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News Around Town: With recent business openings, there are a few more retail options in Matthews. Lory’s Attic and Homebrew Equipment is now open, as is the ABC Store (9920 E Independence Blvd) near Bonefish Grill. Also, Ulta in Sycamore Commons should open today. Ulta’s grand opening celebration is August 24, starting at 11 am.

One Good Thing: Know somebody on the search for a job? There are a handful of employment opportunities with the Town of Matthews. From Crime Analyst to part-time Recreation Leader, the town has a variety of positions and pay grades open.

Morning Minute: Thursday, August 15, 2019

News About Town: The Park and Rec department would like their rhombicosidodecahedron back, please. The multifaceted form was stolen from the greenway earlier this month. The town filed a police report. The sculpture, created by artist and mathematician Robert Sebrosky, features 20 regular triangle faces, 30 square faces, 12 regular pentagon faces, 60 vertices, and 120 edges. Please report any leads to the police department by calling 704-847-5555.

News Around Town: Across the US recently, several dogs have died after exposure to cyanobacterial algal bloom in lakes and ponds. Thankfully none of those deaths have been in Matthews. Take precautions when swimming, and allowing pets to swim, in ponds and lakes. The CDC has a few tips to follow:

  • Don’t swim, water ski, or boat in areas where the water is discolored or where you see foam, scum, or mats of algae on the water’s surface.

  • Do not allow children or pets to play in or drink scummy water.

  • If you do swim in water that might contain harmful cyanobacteria, rinse off with fresh water as soon as possible afterward.

The NC Department of Environmental Quality tracks locations which have tested positive for cyanobacterial algal blooms.

One Fun Thing: Sciences and cultural enthusiasts of all genres are invited to join the Arts and Science Council on August 28, from 6 to 7:30 pm at the Matthews Community Center (100 E. McDowell St.) to learn more about ASC’s grant opportunities. The workshop will cover Cultural Vision Grants, Regional Artist Project Grants, Culture Blocks, and Community Supported Art. It is geared toward creative individuals and nonprofit cultural organizations who want to learn more about the grant application process. RSVP to save your spot here.

In community--
The Beacon Crew

Morning Minute: Wednesday, August 14, 2019

News About Town: The Police Department has had an unusually busy couple days, starting at 2:39 am, August 13. Matthews Officers of the Patrol Division were called to a burglary and shooting at a home on Morningwood Drive. When they arrived, the victim explained that two men broke into her home, demanded money, and shot her in the leg before fleeing. Later that same morning, at 4:58 am, officers were called to InTown Suites on Independence. Two men who were staying at the hotel opened the room door when a woman knocked. When they opened the door, two other men came in and began to assault the residents. The assailants stole one of the resident’s cars, a 2004 BMW 330CI with the license plate HBK-4131.


News Around Town: Ready for your (future-) bus riding child to start school on the 26, but have questions about their transportation? Do you know bus driver hand signals, or what to do when you see concerning behavior? Join CMS on Facebook Live on August 15 from 3 pm ‘til 4. The CMS Transportation Department will be online to explain policies, district preparedness, and vital info for a safe school year on the big yellow bus.

One Fun Thing: Did you paint rocks at Squirrel Lake yesterday? Love to find painted rocks throughout Matthews? Join the Facebook Group Matthews Rocks and share your new hobby. Started in July 2017 by Matthews resident Lynn Lewis, the group is a place to show off your finds and share where you’ve hidden your own painted rocks. Rocks tagged with #MatthewsRocks have been spotted all across the US.

Morning Minute: Tuesday, August 13, 2019

A lot is going on in Matthews, and we’d miss getting the word out if we kept up the usual approach. Today, instead of news, you get some top-notch events to add to your calendar.

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Hang out with town staff at Squirrel Lake Park this morning at 10 am and paint some rocks. They’ll have the stones and supplies, and you bring the creativity and talent. All ages are welcome.

It’s time for the monthly Parks, Rec, and Cultural Advisory Committee meeting. This time they’ll discuss the process of approving public art. Join them at the Community Center on Wednesday, August 14, at 6:30 pm to participate in the conversation.

Touch A Truck (or two or three) this Saturday, August 17 at 10 am (until 1 pm) in Stumptown Park. Town fire trucks, police cars, a backhoe, and other vehicles will be ready for exploration. Get there early for free Kona Ice, but make sure to stick around for the Police K9 demonstration.

Campaign season is in full swing when the forums begin. The first candidate’s forum is Tuesday, August 20 from 7 to 8:15 pm at Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church. Mt. Moriah, Matthews Presbyterian, and Matthews United Methodist are hosting the mayoral and council candidate’s debate as part of the collaborative Racial-Bridge Building Community Forum series.

Head on over to Butler High School Wednesday, August 21, 2019, for the First Annual Community Pep Rally with Butler. Fill up the stadium at Butler with Butler Bulldog pride gear to kick off the football season.

Morning Minute: Monday, August 12, 2019

News About Town: During the July 22 Town Council meeting (Consent Agenda portion), the council unanimously voted to purchase new chairs for the Hood Room. (The crowd rejoiced.) Upon recommendation by town staff, the board approved the purchase of 100 new chairs with a mix of 20-inch seats with arms and 22-inch seats without arms. The town will keep some of the old chairs and sell the remainder as surplus. (Meeting packet, page 19.)

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News Around Town: Last month, Jatwan Cuffie, the Butler student accused of killing classmate Bobby McKeithen in October, 2018, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter. Cuffie maintains he intended to hurt, but not kill McKeithen. According to the Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s Office, Cuffie could serve a maximum of nine years in prison.

One Good Thing: Take the opportunity this Thursday, August 15 at 6 pm, to hear Matthews Heritage Museum Director Barbara Taylor share her research on the day-to-day life in Tank Town (now known as Crestdale). The event includes a panel discussion comprised of current and former residents of Tank Town. Panelists will share personal memories and perspectives on the future growth in and around the area.
The program is free, but seating is limited. The event will be held in the meeting room at the Matthews Public Library (230 Matthews Station Street).

Morning Minute: Friday, August 9, 2019

News About Town: It’s Food Truck Friday, which means swooping the family away to Stumptown Park (120 S. Trade Matthews). No cooking, no cleaning, and live music to boot. This time around, the town will have giveaways and Love Matthews tee-shirts to purchase. There are still a few weeks left of the Love Matthews celebration so you can show your love through actions and attire simultaneously. Food Truck Friday goes from 5 til 9 pm. Matthews love springs eternal.

love matthews.png

News Around Town: What started as a Girl Scout project has made its way to the Matthews Heritage Museum. Senior Girl Scout Payton Bjurstrom created the "Passport to History" program to engage school-age kids to learn about area history. The Matthews museum is now selling the history-based passports. Each booklet contains questions and activities for approximately a dozen sites. Complete the pages for the locale then have staff or volunteers sign the book to verify your visit. Once you've visited all the sites, and the passport is full, you (erm, your child) get a patch. The Matthews Heritage Museum is located at 232 N. Trade Street, Matthews, NC 28105. It is open Thursday to Saturday from 10 to 4:30.

One Good Thing: Salon Plaza (ok, they're at the Galleria, so they're technically in MoRA, not Matthews) is offering free back to school haircuts for rising elementary school-age kids. Bring in a donation of school supplies or hygiene items in exchange. The items will be given to Matthews' own HELP Center. Call 980-552-0058 for information or an appointment.

Morning Minute: Thursday, August 8, 2019

News About Town: Discounting a Council-approved 2013 text amendment to the UDO, the Town has asked Parks and Rec to add elements to the process of approval for public art. Next Wednesday, August 14, the Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Advisory Committee will host a meeting to develop ideas, concepts, and themes for future public art projects in Matthews. The session begins at 6:30 pm in the Community Center.

Image via Stumptown Athletic on Facebook

Image via Stumptown Athletic on Facebook

News Around Town: Matthews’ newest pro-soccer team is one step closer to reality. Stumptown Athletic held tryouts at the Sportsplex this week. Approximately 25 college seniors, free agents, and talented amateur players hit the fields for tryouts this past Monday and Tuesday. Head Coach Mark Steffens (former Charlotte Eagles coach and assistant coach for the Lady Eagles) will soon pick the inaugural team roster.

One Good Thing: Good Cup, a Matthews business based out of the Farmers’ Market, is partnering with Camp Gladiator to do good for the Town of Matthews. This Monday, August 12, they’ll be sweating up a storm in Stumptown Park, starting at 10:30. Rather than a boot camp workout, though, the group will clean the park, powered by cold brew coffee. The public is welcome to join.

Matthews Police National Night Out: A Photoessay

Last night, Police Departments nationwide hosted National Night Out . Started in 1984, National Night Out is an annual event that promotes accessibility and partnership with communities and their police departments.

The Matthews Police hosted this year’s event on the town green in front of Town Hall. Kids were badged junior officers (unofficially) for the evening and enjoyed the bounce houses and balloons; adults learned more about local law enforcement programs and the men and women on the force. Everyone enjoyed meeting the local police team and seeing the vehicles, but K-9 Unit Benjamin was the star of the evening.

If you missed it this year, plan on attending next year. National Night Out is hosted the first Tuesday of August, and the Matthews Police Department is already brainstorming for it.

Morning Minute: Wednesday, August 7, 2019

News About Town: The Elizabeth Lane Elementary mobile unit sunset clause came up again during last night’s council meeting. The Planning Board presented a summary of their most recent meeting notes when they voted unanimously to recommend approval of a three-year for the clause. Principal Crystal Lail spoke to the Board and explained the new carpool queuing. The board of commissioners voted to maintain the annual reevaluation.


News Around Town: According to the NC Education Lottery twitter feed, the winning Cash 5 ticket was sold in Matthews. A ticket with all five matching numbers, worth $349,027, was sold at the Adams Mart at the corner of Matthews-Mint Hill and Independence (11103 E Independence Blvd, Matthews). Double-check your numbers, you may be a winner: 24 26 27 31 41.

One Good Thing: Got a precious pooch? Wanna show off the mug on your favorite mutt? The Town of Matthews wants to see pics of your pup for the Pawsitively Matthews’ Finest Fido contest. Submit your pictures by August 31, and your captivating canine will receive a prize and be featured on the official 2019 Pawsitively Matthews t-shirt.

2810[high]5: Ways to Simplify Your Life

Did you know that the first week of August is National Simplify your Life week? Here are a few ways you can simplify things in your home, at work, and in your mind. 

Declutter - Did you know that there are more reasons to declutter your home than the obvious (less clutter)? According to Psychology Today, it has several psychological benefits as well. It forces you to use decision making and problem solving skills as you prioritize the stuff you have and come up with solutions on how to store it. It can also reduce anxiety, because we lack of order sometimes causes stress. Humans may have evolved to respond this way, because a lack of order in was most likely disadvantageous for early humans. Finally, decluttering might give your mind an opportunity to wander and take a break from your usual thinking.

Prep for Tomorrow - How many times a day do we feel rushed because we are doing something at the last minute? This week, make yourself a list of things you can do to get yourself ready for the next day, even if it’s just one or two activities. Pack your lunch the night before. Before you leave the office, jot down a quick list of what you want to get done tomorrow, Pick out your clothes, pack your work and gym bag, and prep your breakfast. You’ll be surprised how much more smoothly your morning goes the next day.

Embrace "No" - Sometimes, its okay to say no. Many of us are people pleasers (myself included) and we often find ourselves taking on projects or activities that are not beneficial to ours or others lives. If you’re constantly overextending yourself and it’s affecting your mental well-being, use this week as an excuse to practice saying “no” and see if it doesn’t help your outlook.

Prioritize your time - Embracing “no” leads me to the next tip, prioritize time. Now that you’ve gotten some time back by politely declining activities, be mindful of how you spend that time. How much time do you spend mindlessly checking your phone, your email, your twitter feed? Check out from your screens during set hours each day, or only allow yourself to check your phone at the top of every hour. 

Give Yourself a Break - Treat yourself to a destressing activity that you enjoy. Go for a hike. Read a book. Get a massage. Do nothing.

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Morning Minute: Tuesday, August 6, 2019

News About Town: The Town of Matthews recently unveiled a new project last week called the Matthews Messenger. The Messenger is a monthly newsletter sent out by the town to keep residents informed on a variety of town topics. An idea first suggested by Commissioner Jeff Miller, the town estimated approximately $12,000 annually to hire an outside firm to produce. This would allow Communications Director Maureen Keith the ability to maintain her regular workload. See the first issue here, and a subscription button will pop up to subscribe.

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News Around Town: If you missed the public meeting to learn more about the Stevens Creek Subarea Study, the Town of Matthews has an online survey for input. Learn more about the preserve, then tell the town what you think. This survey will provide information to town staff and VHB consultants on how to best provide pedestrian and bicycling access to the preserve.

One Good Thing: Between National Night Out and Matthews Gives Back, the Matthews Police are even busier than usual. Area churches and nonprofits are partnering with the police department for Matthews Gives Back, this time to collect school supplies for area kids in need. If your child needs supplies, fill out the survey at this link, or call the HELP Center (704-847-8383) before close of business on Tuesday, August 13.

Morning Minute: Monday, August 5, 2019

News About Town: The first council meeting of August is a week early, which means it’s tonight. There’s not a lot on the agenda, but a few things of interest, including a few ways to pretty up the town in advance of the 2020 RNC, installing flashing beacons for the school zone at Crestdale middle, the adoption of an extended mobile classroom sunset clause for Elizabeth Lane Elementary as well as a new afternoon queuing pattern, and appropriating $30,000 in grant monies from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation for the Crestdale Heritage Trail.

Image via Unsplash

Image via Unsplash

News Around Town: It’s National Farmers’ Market Week. According to American Farmland Trust, “Between 1992 and 2012, the United States converted about 31 million acres of agricultural land to development.” By supporting local farmers, you are preserving agricultural lands.. Especially with an all-local market that defines Saturday mornings in downtown Matthews, a celebration is in order. While the average fruits and vegetables travel more than 1,200 miles to get to the grocery store, the Matthews Market is limited to 50 miles, feeding right back into the local economy. Celebrating is easy, just head out to the market this Saturday (August 10) and thank the farmers and the market organizers for all they do for Matthews.

One Fun Thing: Did your kids participate in Charlotte Mecklenburg Library’s Summer Break? Head over to the Matthews branch on Wednesday, August 7 from 3:00 to 4:00 pm to celebrate the end of the program at “I Survived... Summer Break!” The event will include hands-on exploration of Lauren Tarshis “I Survived...” series.