NC Potluck of Good Things - no primaries added!

Since we've had a couple of days of vigorous contention and debate, I thought I'd post a few things I've read about that are good things happening in NC right now. No primaries mentioned!

  1. The North Carolina Zoo flipped the switch on the largest solar project in the state. Students from the zoo school were there for the unveiling and got a lesson in alternative energy. One student said, "Solar energy is going to be the future, it has to be. I think this is an amazing start of what's to come." Teachers from the school (and presumably other schools who visit) will be able to use the display as a hands-on learning site - teaching through observation and research. One of the teachers described this as a "dream come true". The panels are expected to produce about 130,000 kilowatt hours a year - enough to keep the lights on in about a dozen homes.
    The solar panels are mounted on three picnic pavilions and eventually it will provide a unique covered catering space for 1200 people. “It being in such a great setting, it's just such a cool setting to be under a solar system and know that it's providing power to the North Carolina electric grid,” Pugh said.

    Maybe that would be a good central location for a BlueNC Bash as well...hmm.

  2. The Northern Moore Family Resource Center, located in Robbins, recently received a grant of $86,500 to help Latino children prepare for school. The program, Unidos para Ninos, is designed to increase parental involvement and skills and English language skills of parents and small children.
    "We're thrilled to receive this funding," said Clare Ruggles, executive director of the Center. "We hope the program will be a success and will be replicated in other communities across the state."

    The funds come from a new dropout prevention problem established by the 2007 session of the NC General Assembly. Most Dropout Prevention programs focus on older children, middle school aged or high school. By focusing on early education and family involvement at the preschool level, NMFRC is taking an approach that personally pleases me, and is supported by research going back as far as the Abecedarian study done at Frank Porter Graham. By giving firm foundations to children in the early years, they will be less likely to fall behind in elementary school, and will be more likely to stay engaged through their middle and high school years. Clare Ruggles, the Executive Director of the NMFRC, who wrote the grant, serves as Treasurer to the Moore County Democratic Party. In my opinion, this is a great example of how Democrats involved in their communities make a huge difference. Kudos, Clare. Well done.

  3. Taptu Music Cube Game. OK - it's not an NC thing, but it will keep you busy for hours. And yes, I have, in the words of my teen dems, "beasted the cube." Can you?
  4. It's raining, and the wind chimes are making music. If I can't sleep, that's good, right? Especially with a nice glass of plum wine.
  5. Roy Cooper still kicks butt.
    In a victory for social networking safety, Attorney General Roy Cooper and 49 other attorneys
    general today announced that MySpace has agreed to significant steps to better protect children on its web site,
    including creating a task force to explore and develop age and identity verification technology.

    As a parent, I'm really happy about this development. As a voter, I'm going to remember. (He's not in any primaries, so I can include him here.)

  6. North Carolina Ready Schools Initiative. In 2000, North Carolina embarked on a mission to help children get ready for school. Thanks to visionary programs created in local Smart Start partnerships, the More at Four program, and giant steps forward in child care quality, we're well on our way to acheiving the goal of all children ready to enter school. In Oct of 2007, the second phase of this mission was launched: Making Sure all Schools are Ready for All Children. I've been involved in this at the local level, and I have to say, this is a terrific antidote for the one size fits all teach to the test approach that federal No Child Left Behind. legislation has given us.

    This initiative, which provides resources, grants, training and support to communities through their local Smart Start partnership and school district. By providing the latest research as well as practical, real world applications and advice, this initiative will make it easier for children to transition from home to school, or from child care to school, as seamlessly as possible. This initiative will ultimately support counties in developing a Ready Schools planning process so that All Schools will be ready for all children - no matter their background, abilities, skills, etc. It's fantastic. If you know the Smart Start director in your town, or if you have contact with your school superintendent, ask about the Ready Schools Initiative and how it's going in your county. Encourage them, and thank them for the work they're doing for North Carolina's children.


So what's good in your world?

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

A couple of good things coming up ...

1) HKonJ on Feb 9. If you're up for a day of claiming and strengthening your progressive beliefs, this is where you'll want to be on February 9th.

2) And George Lakoff (this linky is a 1 hour video) will be in Raleigh March 1 and you're invited. I've got my ticket. Go get yours and let's go!! :)

I choose to be inspired.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

Clean Water Management Trust Fund

I just finished my grant proposal to the Clean Water Management Trust Fund. WOOHOO!

The CLWMTF is one of the best things our legislature has done. This $100 million fund has helped a lot of people in our state.

"jump in where you can and hang on"
Briscoe Darling to Sheriff Andy

Flying to Toronto today

Given my track record with air travel lately, I may not get back until next year, though I'm supposed to be back by Friday afternoon.

Thanks for this happy send off!

Traveling mercies, A.

Be well, do good and come home safe.

I'm traveling today, too ... to the NC Main Street Conference in Rocky Mount and will also be back Friday evening. Then I'll be having dinner with friends at the Melting Pot, which required a special budgetary set aside for a woman of my limited means, but it will be an awesomely wondermous good time. All in all, life is good ... as long as I don't think about the land use planning meeting I went to last night. :)

I choose to be inspired.

"They took all the trees and put them in a tree museum Then they charged the people a dollar 'n a half just to see 'em. Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."

safe journeys, James

Toronto is one of my favorite cities - say "hi" to it for me. When I lived in Pittsburgh, we traveled there often for shows, concerts, etc.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Flying to Chicago this weekend.

Guess I should take my "long johns" with me?
Anyone know of a place in downtown Chicago that I should visit? I won't have much time , I'm supposed to be working with a bunch of foreigners with a camera :-)

good suggestion

I've actually seen Buddy Guy perform with one of my long time favorite singer-songwriters, John Hiatt.
I'll have to figure out how far that place is from my hotel, maybe I can have the camera team pay for my meal there..LOL
I can't afford all that stuff, certainly wouldn't be able to afford the hotel they're putting me in.
Yes, corporate media is swimming in money wherever in the world they're from.

Dangit, clicked on the wrong reply again. Anyway, i was talking to you lcloud :-)

I saw him this summer in Durham.

One of the best shows I've ever seen.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Nice Diary and thread you have here.

My sister just sent me some flannel sheets. Does that count for something good?

On a more political note - Person County Dems are planning several events with real live candidates
as possible attendees. We might even have a visitor to our March Exec. Comm. meeting, but I shouldn't mention who yet. Person County democrats getting active, now that is something good.

Well done, Linda. Just what was needed.

"Always look on the bri-ight side of life. da-doot, da-doot, do-doot da-doot da-doot."


Person County Democrats

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

No fair hinting....who is it??

Be sure to let us know - and if you want it added to the BlueNC event calendar, send me the details as soon as they're finalized.

What kinds of events are you planning? Give me some ideas.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Here's some ideas of things we have done previously

or are working on for this year.

Dinner with the Candidates about mid April. A forum to allow dem voters to meet dem candidates prior to the primaries. 2004 and 2006 both went well.

A coffee or two in informal settings. A meet and greet with some fund raising. We had a very successful one for Ellie Kinnaird in 2006.

Feb. 5, Super Tuesday, we will gather informally at a local dining establishment to watch returns come in. The restaurant appreciates the midweek business and we get a big screen tv to watch political stuff.

As a followup to the above, we will find an excuse to gather most months between now and Nov. In 2004 we did "Last Thursdays" which meant that we gathered informally at our favorite restaurant just to hang out and talk up dem candidates.

I will try to find an excuse for dems to gather informally at least once a month with the probable exception of April which looks to be busy.

We are talking about a small dollar fund raiser for Brad Miller in May.

Our Democratic Women are working on getting an event going to promote some (all?) of the women running for office this year.

I'll try to get the teens involved in an event or two as well.

Lots of irons in the fire. I hope we can pull most of this off.

Sorry, I can't let that potential visitor's name go just yet.

Person County Democrats

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

Thanks - those are great ideas.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi