A new haven for dogs and cats
Plus: A new Charlotte-themed crossword; News of week: Earnest Winston and James Borrego fired — Panthers terminate agreement with Rock Hill — West Charlotte forfeits football games
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The Humane Society of Charlotte’s new Animal Resource Center will be a ‘community center for pets and people’; with cat cafe, retail store, ‘cat-io’
Humane Society of Charlotte CEO Shelly Moore says the organization expects to move into its new facility off Remount Road next month. Here, Moore stands at the entrance to the medical portion of the building, where veterinarians will treat both animals who are living in the shelter and pets in the community who need low-cost care.
by Cristina Bolling
In just a few weeks, a chorus of barks and purrs will fill the Humane Society of Charlotte’s new Animal Resource Center — a bright, expansive building that’s a fresh change from the dilapidated, scattered facilities the non-profit has been working out of for decades.
Each year, thousands of dogs and cats move through the Humane Society’s doors in need of adoption or seeking low-cost medical care like spay and neuter surgeries and vaccines, and staff and volunteers operate a pet-food food bank for families in need.
Now, that’ll all happen in a fresh, new “Animal Resource Center” off Remount Road southwest of uptown that’s just a 1.4 mile trot down the road from the organization’s current facility off Toomey Road.
In the new 26,000 s.f. space, visitors will be able to grab a coffee and hang out with adoptable adult cats in a “cat café” at the building’s entrance. Or they’ll be able to buy a new collar in the center’s retail store, visit the dogs who are hanging out in private suites waiting for adoption and watch cats play in the “cat-io” (cat patio).
An expansive clinic in the building will offer basic veterinary care in addition to low-cost spay and neuter surgeries and an education center will host summer camps and programs for the public. The 17-acre property will include fenced areas where dogs will be taken to run in the sunshine.
The new facility will allow the Humane Society’s 63 staff members to all come to work in one place for the first time in the organization’s history. Currently, the staff work out of multiple locations: the Toomey Road shelter, a clinic adjacent to the Mecklenburg County Animal Care & Control facility, and since Covid, the administrative staff have been working from home.
The Humane Society of Charlotte is an all-local non-profit, which isn’t affiliated with any national organization. The organization is $138,000 away from its $15M goal for the project, according to president and CEO Shelly Moore. All fundraising came through individuals, she said.
“We always had the intent that it be a community center — not a shelter, not a pound. We need a community center for pets and people,” Moore said.
Moore said the vision for the project “was really the celebration of the human-animal bond and helping people from the very beginning through pet acquisition and supporting them through all their needs, even to provide end of life support with grief counseling.”
About 3,000 dogs and cats come through the Humane Society’s no-kill shelter each year. The Humane Society only accepts dogs and cats it has the capacity to care for, unlike Mecklenburg County Animal Care & Control, which is considered an “open admission shelter” that takes in all kinds of animals including strays, cruelty cases and even livestock.
A big part of the Humane Society’s mission is to eliminate the need for animals to be put in a shelter in the first place, said Donna Stucker, the Humane Society of Charlotte’s chief philanthropy officer.
“Sheltering has changed, where it used to be like, ‘If you can’t take care of your pet, bring them to us we’ll take care of them,’” Stucker said. “Our idea now is, we don’t want your pet in the shelter. If you have a loving home, please keep that pet — and how can we help you keep that pet?”
Cristina Bolling is managing editor of The Ledger: email@example.com
Today’s supporting sponsors are Soni Brendle…
This week’s Ledger crossword theme: ‘Furniture Man’
It’s time again for The Ledger’s weekly Charlotte-themed crossword. Break out those pencils, or pens if you dare. (Or if you’re tech savvy, do it on a tablet with the .PUZ format with an app called Across Lite.)
Ledger crosswords are by Chris King, edited by Tim Whitmire and presented by CXN Advisory. Enjoy!
.PDF (suitable for download and printing):
.PUZ (suitable for use on tablets and computers with Across Lite app):
This week in Charlotte: CMS superintendent and Hornets’ coach fired; New name for Stonewall Street; Panthers pull out of Rock Hill agreement
On Saturdays, The Ledger sifts through the local news of the week and links to the top articles — even if they appeared somewhere else. We’ll help you get caught up. That’s what Saturdays are for.
◼️ Superintendent fired: The school board voted 7-2 on Tuesday to fire Superintendent Earnest Winston after a little more than two and a half years on the job. He’ll receive almost $600,000 in severance under terms of an employment contract board members approved a year ago. He’ll be replaced on an interim basis by Hugh Hattabaugh, a former CMS administrator, while the district conducts a search.
In their own words (Ledger 🔒): School board members explain their thinking on the vote to fire Winston.
Documents provide explanation (Ledger, Observer): Board members voted to release portions of Winston’s personnel file, which show they were dissatisfied with his handling of many issues, including responses to sexual assault complaints, a controversial speech, communication and others.
The downfall of a superintendent: (WFAE) Veteran education reporter Ann Doss Helms of WFAE took a comprehensive look at the moments and issues that led the board to fire Winston.
School board elections loom: (Ledger 🔒) School board members held Earnest Winston accountable for his leadership. Ledger executive editor Tony Mecia explores whether voters will hold board members accountable for their leadership of the district, too.
Senate race fundraising: (WCNC) The Senate campaigns of Pat McCrory and Ted Budd raised about the same amounts of money in the first quarter: $1.13M for McCrory and $1.125M for Budd. McCrory has slightly more cash on hand.
Commissioner told to stop contacting judge: (WFAE) Court officials in Raleigh and Charlotte have asked county commissioner Vilma Leake to stop contacting District Court Judge Rex Marvel about a pending case. Leake said a constituent asked for her help in a child-welfare dispute.
New street names: The city announced two new street names, to replace names tied to white supremacy: Stonewall Street uptown will be called “Brooklyn Village Avenue,” and Barringer Drive will be renamed “Revolution Park Drive.” (Spectrum News)
Rock Hill deal terminated: (Biz Journal) The Carolina Panthers say they have formally terminated an agreement with the city of Rock Hill to build a headquarters complex there after the city failed to issue bonds to fund the infrastructure for the project, which is partially built. The team said it is open to discussing alternate arrangement to finishing the project.
Apartment tower for site near stadium: (Biz Journal, subscriber-only) A Texas developer that bought 1.4 acres on Morehead Street near Bank of America Stadium this month says it is building a 12-story, 393-unit apartment building with a 5-story parking deck. The Ledger reported on April 6 that Aspen Heights Partners bought 1.38 acres at West Morehead and Mint streets for $16.25M. The development will be called “Mint & Morehead,” according to a press release.
Borrego fired: (ESPN) The Charlotte Hornets fired coach James Borrego on Friday after four seasons. The Hornets were 43-39 this year and lost their first play-in game for the second year in a row.
Ineligible player at West Charlotte: (WSOC) West Charlotte High School’s football team will have all of its 2021-22 games listed as forfeits after the N.C. High School Athletic Association ruled it used an ineligible player. The school also has to return playoff earnings and pay a $250 fine. Myers Park High faced the same penalty last month.
After tragedy, support from soccer fans: (Fútbol Friday) After Heidi Underhill’s boyfriend was shot and killed in a break-in, she embraced one of his passions — soccer — and found an outpouring of support from fellow soccer fans. “I really think it saved my life,” she told The Ledger’s Carroll Walton, who writes our weekly Fútbol Friday newsletter on pro soccer.
An early pioneer of the ‘Easter egg’: (The Hustle) One of the first “Easter eggs” — a hidden message in a video game — was created by Warren Robinett, an Atari designer in the 1970s who built the game “Adventure” and included a secret room listing his name as game’s creator as an act of corporate defiance. He now lives in Chapel Hill. “It was kind of a little ‘f— you’ to Atari management,” Robinett told business publication The Hustle.
Charlotte ink: (Axios Charlotte, with photos) Axios Charlotte found a handful of people who have tattoos of Charlotte images — including crowns and skylines. One native Charlottean told the publication: “I love Charlotte’s skyline, and I’m proud to be a local, so why not make it a permanent part of my body?”
From the Ledger family of newsletters
Charlotte galas make a comeback: (Friday 🔒) After two years of downsized or canceled arts galas, they’re back big time this spring, with arts groups attracting record crowds of donors interested in having fun and dropping some serious cash.
Myers Park High sexual assault case: (Friday 🔒) Lawyers faced off in front of a federal judge on Wednesday on the fate of a lawsuit claiming that Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police and Myers Park High administrators mishandled a sexual assault allegation from 2015. Lawyers for CMPD and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools asked the judge to throw out the suit, but the plaintiff’s lawyers said it should continue.
Zoo expansion: (Friday 🔒) The N.C. Zoo in Asheboro plans to break ground this summer on a new “Asia” habitat that includes tigers.
Ways of Life (🔒): Our weekly obituaries newsletter examined the life of Bill Hensley, a sportswriter and state tourism director who had a “Southern gentleman sort of vibe.” He died last month at age 96.
Uber-like shuttles: (Transit Time) Some N.C. towns are replacing buses with on-demand shuttles, which some residents say is more convenient. But some transportation planners say that approach might not work in larger cities because the service could become too popular and expensive.
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Executive editor: Tony Mecia; Managing editor: Cristina Bolling; Contributing editor: Tim Whitmire, CXN Advisory; Contributing photographer/videographer: Kevin Young, The 5 and 2 Project