I follow a lot of local media and municipal
organizations and I often come across things that are
so cool I feel like everyone should know about them. Here are a few recent discoveries I hope you'll enjoy. Check them out and tell your friends. Some things just need to be shared!
Fun to know!
Looking for something different – and safe – to do over the
long holiday weekend? Why not check out a cool new interactive art installation? Charlotte Listens
created and developed by Sara Kate Baudhuin at the Charlotte Art League, is a
creative answer to the realities of COVID-19 isolation. It’s a storytelling
“payphone,” but, instead of a phone, you’ll find a panel with a QR code that, when
scanned, gives you a phone number to listen to one of five different short
stories recorded by previous participants. After you listen, you’re invited to
share a story of your own with the help of prompts. (Note: The Charlotte Art League screens the recordings,
so there’s no risk of encountering anything inappropriate.) As stories are
added, the menu of options changes and expands.
We visited the other day and found this to be a clever, fun,
family-friendly activity. It’s a compelling, contactless and engaging outing that
can help us all feel a little more connected to our community while we remain
This is a mobile installation. Follow @charlotte.listens on Instagram to find its current location. At the time of this post, the booth was located at Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams in South End. While it's there, consider pairing your visit with a bike ride or walk on the Rail Trail and a frozen treat!
Good to know!
I recently read an article in CharlotteFive about “essential distancing”
and the popularity trends for visiting places like
grocery stores, coffee shops and parks in Charlotte under COVID-19. The
reporter gleaned this data from Google’s Community Mobility Report
a resource I find fascinating. This report shows movement trends by region across
categories of places we visit in our day-to-day lives. With an unbelievably
vast database, Google is able to compare mobility trends worldwide, but the
real value for local citizens is being able to modify their personal outings to
account for crowds and, hopefully, mitigate the spread of coronavirus.
This database is easy to use. Enter a region (down to the
state level) and download the most recent report. Of particular interest to me are stats on parks and recreation.
Other fun tools the article mentioned are Google Maps’ popular times and live busyness feature,
which offers real-time insight into how crowded a place might be before you go, and the
which helps orient users en route to an unfamiliar destination. Both seem genius
at any time, but particularly in the age of COVID-19.
Did you know?
You probably know that paper yard waste bags are way better
for the environment than plastic. But did you know that Mecklenburg
County gives compostable paper bags away for free
? These are available at all Mecklenburg County Drop Centers
(Mondays through Saturdays, 7 a.m. – 4 p.m.) and other locations like the City
of Charlotte Solid Waste Office (located at 1200 Ottis Street,
first-come/first-served every Friday from 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.). You can get up to 10
bags per visit. Pretty cool, huh?
Got any other fun local tips, suggestions or resources?
Message me! I’d love to check them out and spread the word.