Charlotte: #WOKE100 List, Tegan and Sarah, AIDS Walk, Open Trail, Guggenheim Fellow, Art Program

Bishop named to mag list

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Bishop Tonyia Rawls, founder and co-director of the Freedom Center for Social Justice, was named one of 100 women in ESSENCE magazine’s inaugural #WOKE100 list.

The distinction honors black women activists, artists, politicians, educators, organizers, journalists and creators who are working to achieve equality and inclusion for people of color.

Rawls was recognized for the work of the center, particularly for its “Do No Harm” campaign.

In other news, the center has released the results of its southern intergenerational survey. Data collected can be useful in resolving various challenges. One guided question emerged from the listenings stage — In what way do ideological differences contribute most to the barriers of sustainable intergenerational work, genuine collaboration and effective coalition building? The survey was crafted to deepen the collective understanding of attitudes, challenges and successes in intergenerational/intersectional social movement organizing for those involved in the project.

All of the reports are available online: question/approach/demographics,; results,; and recommendations,


Twins bring concert to Queen City

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Canadian singing duo Tegan and Sara will bring their show to The Fillmore Charlotte, 820 Hamilton St., on June 8 at 8 p.m.

Embraced by the mainstream, Tegan and Sara consciously operate to the left of popular culture — their lyrical and social wisdom comes from an outside vantage looking in. Paradoxically, the essential message that underpins their worldview and identity is inclusion. The contemporary artists can cross boundaries of genre and culture effortlessly, having performed alongside Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, at Coachella or at the Academy Awards to name a few.

Tegan and Sara were born in Calgary, Alberta and now reside in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Tickets are $27.50 for general admission/standing room. Early purchase is recommended and prices will increase on show day. Premium seating can be purchased as well at the Fillmore. To learn more, email Dana Dudley at 919-424-1352 or email

A new parking deck on the property is available for attendees at $5.


Walk raises funds

BELMONT, N.C. — The House of Mercy’s Walk for AIDS, held on April 22, raised $47,717 to support its work in providing for low-income residents living with AIDS with approximately 300 participated in the annual event.

Since its inception, the House of Mercy has been home to 327 men and women who have battled AIDS. With this year’s record-breaking event, the work of the Sisters of Mercy will continue to be sustained.

Top fundraisers were Team Maggie and Chantelle Hurst.

House of Mercy President Stan Patterson shared his sentiments. “With your generous support, we set a Walk for AIDS fundraising record of $47,717 raised. These funds will help provide a home and care for low-income persons living with AIDS at House of Mercy. Together we have significantly changed the lives of hundreds of residents and their loved ones. Thank you!”

The facility opened on May 18, 1991.


Trail adds new trail segment

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Cross Charlotte Trail opened a new segment connecting Little Sugar Creek Greenway through Cordelia Park to NoDa on May 3 and B-Cycle’s Dianna Ward could not be happier. The scenic route will span from Pineville, N.C. through Center City and end at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte once it is completed.

Ward, a bicycle enthusiast, rides her bike to work each day in Uptown Charlotte from her home in Villa Heights. She is featured in a video online touting the trail (see

The undertaking is a first joint venture between the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, the Crown Jewel reported. It is part of the Carolina Thread Trail which is unfolds into a network of trails, greenways and blueways that reach 15 counties and two states.


Artist named fellow

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — On April 7, local artist John W. Love, Jr. was named a 2017 Guggenheim Fellow, The Charlotte Observer reported.

He will use the fellowship to flow from his interdisciplinary work “FECUND.” The work is part performance and part visual art — an immersive installation.

Love’s work crosses a plethora of categories. His works have been a fixture of the Queen City’s art scene for years, the Observer added.


Art program hits art scene

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — At a media day on May 4 held at Wells Fargo Auditorium at Knight Theatre, Inside|Out Charlotte was introduced to the city.

The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art and the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture have joined forces to bring this innovative art form to the public where works of art are scattered across the landscape in simple installations for all to enjoy.

This public exhibition and outreach program will reach into the greater Charlotte-Mecklenburg area to strengthen knowledge, understanding and appreciation for visual art. The program places framed, high-quality reproductions of artworks on display at the Bechtler Museum and Gantt Center for community members to encounter and enjoy programming specifically designed for each installation. Inside|Out Charlotte will launch in the spring highlighting artworks that reflect the diversity of the museums’ collections and broad interests in the communities.

Residents, families and friends in the participating communities will be able to walk through the park or hop on a bike, encounter art in unexpected places and enjoy each outdoor exhibition.

The Bechtler and the Gantt Center in conjunction with the partner communities will plan educational opportunities and other fun activities, such as bicycle and walking tours, community discussions, musical performances and more.

The national program is sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and started eight years ago at the Detroit Institute of Arts. It includes partners around the U.S.

Community partners are Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation, YMCA of Greater Charlotte, Johnson C. Smith University, Detroit Institute of Arts, Knight Foundation and Mattie Marshall of the Washington Heights Community Association Inc.


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Does your organization or special interest group have events or great information to share with our readers? If so, be sure to send in your information to In the upcoming months, we’ll feature one of you in our news notes section in each issue. Are you a part of a Meetup, Yahoo or Google group and do you do something that’s really newsworthy? Do you provide a service for the community or hold fundraisers for worthy causes? Do you educate the public about LGBT issues or concerns? Of course, this is only a sampling of things we are interested in. It’s the aim of these pieces to inform, enlighten and educate our readers about what we’re doing here in the Carolinas to champion LGBT rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

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About the author: Lainey Millen is QNotes’ associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. News columnist and production director. She can be reached at and 704-531-9988, x205.

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