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May 2015 • VOLUME 10 NUMBER 8



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Cornelius Today P.O. Box 2062 Cornelius, NC 28031-2062

Biking as economic developer shifts into high gear



2 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

May Things to do

Local celebrities will mix it up May 14 for Big Day at the Lake

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Local government officials, business people and others will duel for tips at the Sixth Annual Celebrity Bartending event for Big Day at the Lake on Thursday May 14 at Alton’s Kitchen & Cocktails. All tips go to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Charlotte. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. Celebrities on deck during the next three hours include NC Rep. John Bradford, Cornelius Commissioner Woody Washam, LKN Chamber Chairman Mike Russell, Tricia Sisson from The Range at Lake Norman, Denis Bilodeau, representing Lake Norman Rotary, Amanda Dudley, the founder of Exit 28 Ridiculousness, Sabrena Fernandez from the Charlotte Chamber Board, Nate Davis, founder of LKNFun dot com and Joshua Dobi from Dobi Financial Group. The public is invited to attend and tip for a good cause. Big Day at the Lake puts at-risk youngsters from Big Brothers Big Sisters and their BIGS out on Lake Norman and Mountain Island Lake for a day of fun each year. This year’s event will be held on Saturday July 18.

Big Day at the Lake has three goals: Provide a day of fun for at-risk children who would not otherwise experience Lake Norman or Mountain Island Lake, recruit “Bigs” and raise money for a worthy non-profit that focuses exclusively on children. Thanks to local businesses and individuals, Big Day at the Lake is responsible for raising well over $500,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters during the past 10 years. BBBS serves some 250 children in North Meck. PayPal is the Presenting Sponsor of Big Day at the Lake. Admiral Sponsors include ACN, American Tire Distributors, Champion Tire & Wheel and Duke Energy. Commander sponsors are Aquesta Bank, Chantal and Denis Bilodeau, Jim Duke, Dobi Financial Group, Lake Norman Kiwanis, McIntosh Law Firm, Dr. Nancy and Sen. Jeff Tarte, Lake Norman Realty, Park Avenue Properties. Captain Sponsors include Cornerstone Financial Partners and Lake Norman Chrysler Jeep Dodge. Big Day at the Lake is on Facebook, or visit

'Hornet's Nest' at Cornelius Arts Center May 23 The Hornet's Nest, a 2014 documentary film about the Afghanistan war, will be shown at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday May 23 at the Cornelius Arts Center. Hosted by Dee Gilroy and Pam Cooper, the screenings will feature guest speakers and opportunities to

learn how to assist local veterans. Doors open one hour before for a reception sponsored by Cornelius Today. Seating is limited. To RSVP, or 704-301-6497, or or 310200-6804.

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CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 3

Table of Contents Biking in Cornelius A new task force is looking at bike routes, safety. Page 4

90 day review

North Carolina Rep. John Bradford, a Cornelius resident, reflects on his first 90 days in Raleigh Page 8


New CMS Superintendent Ann Clark and Board Member Rhonda Lennon gave a lesson in education Page 10

Talk of the town

Amanda Dudley is the creator and admin behind the popular Facebook group, ‘Exit 28 Ridiculousness’ Page 12

Cornelius Cooks

Shelia Perry’s Leek-Asparagus Pie is a low-carb alternative to quiche Page 26

HOME DECOR ………………………… Page 23 HOME SALES ……………………… Page 18-20 NEWS-E ………………………… Pages 14-15 new coporations …………………. . . Page 24 SOUNDOFF, letters ……………… .Page 30-31

Keith Blankenship designed this month’s cover

Lake People RUN DEEP™


Editor: Dave Yochum,; Sales and Marketing Director: Gail Williams,; Production Director: Stephen Nance, production.todaypubs@ Send us your news: Cornelius Today is published 12 months a year by NorthEast Business Today, LLC with all rights reserved. Reproduction or use of any content without permission is prohibited. The Cornelius Today logo, stylized wave, and Lake People slogan are copyrights of Cornelius Today and NorthEast Business Today. All rights reserved. Views expressed herein are not necessarily the views of Cornelius Today or Business Today. Cornelius Today is a local community service-driven publication. Cornelius Today, PO Box 2062, Cornelius, NC 28031-2062. Telephone: 704-895-1335 Fax: 704-490-4447 Email: Cornelius Today is independently owned and operated and based in Cornelius. Back issues: Payable by VISA and MASTERCARD ONLY. $1.50 (if available); $4 to mail. Reprints: Reprints on high-quality , framable stock are available, starting at $65 Photos: $100.

4 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

Bicycling as economic developer gains speed By Dave Yochum In the world of urban design, economic development and desirable communities, biking is one of the hottest things on two wheels. Kathleen Rose, founder Rose & Associates Southeast, a thriving real estate and economic development advisory services company in ROSE Davidson, says bike lanes, trails and greenways are “among the most revered amenities in terms of choosing neighborhoods and homes.” Indeed, the Town of Cornelius has hired Alta Planning + Design to hold a series of meetings with Cornelius residents to learn what we want in terms of cycling, and come up with a master plan that includes bike paths, enhanced safety and even education around cycling. A master plan is expected sometime this fall. The Alta contract is valued at $45,000, with 70 percent of the tab being paid for by the state. “If you look at the more recent studies from Realtors and homebuilders, a lot of communities and neighborhoods are making choices of living around greenways and bike trails. They are among the most revered amenities in terms of choosing neighborhoods or homes,” says Rose. In fact, the communities that have more choices around walking and cycling—not just automobiles—are “the ones that enjoy greater economic success for the community and greater values for the property owners.”≈ In Cornelius, the land of mansions and pricey lakefront condos, the median home value is $246,769, according to City-Data. In Davidson, the upwardly mobile middle class spreads more evenly across the community. The median value of Davidson homes and condos is $395,772, according to City-Data. Accommodations for cycling and walking, Rose states, “create a more successful community.” Davidson Mayor John Woods says that it “distresses me to see a community go four lanes to accommodate traffic.”

That said, Davidson, which has recruited top-drawer employers like MSC Industrial and Valspar, makes certain that “drivers have alternatives; bikers and walkers have alternatives. A pedestrian isn’t trying to cross four lanes of traffic.” “We would fight before we build fourlane roads,” he says. Of course, cars are going faster, drivers are distracted and, per capita, there are fewer police officers in Cornelius now than there were 10 years ago. National Bike to Work Week is May 11-15. That week members of the new Bike!Cornelius steering committee will survey the town on bike, according to Cornelius Senior Planner Jason Pauling. Members of the Town Commission will be invited. Mayor Chuck Travis admits he was “terrified” riding his bike from his gym on Highway 21 in Cornelius back across Westmoreland to his home on Mollypop Lane. The Charlotte region has received nationwide attention TRAVIS as one of the least cycling-friendly cities in the United States, according to Out of the 50 largest American cities, Charlotte ranked 47th. Places like Portland, Ore., Washington, D.C., and Minneapolis were at the top of the heap. Some 6.14 percent of Portland’s commuters bike to work, which means fewer cars on the road. Washington, D.C., is investing heavily in improving infrastructure for bikers, at the cost of almost $14 per person. Minneapolis has 118 miles of on-street bike paths and 92 miles of off-street bike paths. Does cycling make a town more livable, or more attractive? “Fundamentally so,” says Town Commissioner Dave Gilroy. “Consider any elevation sketch you see for a new project or development. There is always a bike rider shown in the foreground.” Biking, he says, gets people out and about on a human, individual scale, which builds a stronger sense of community and helps reduce crime.

“Everybody feels connected and in the same world,” says Davidson Mayor Woods. Pointing to the fiasco that is Independence Boulevard, he says an emphasis on four-lane roads “has stifled community and business.” “We’re doing the best we can to hold on to the quality of life that is important to us. We have worked hard for decades now to connect streets. We want people to live in Davidson,” Woods says. In WOODS a world where we’re isolated by technology, cycling “brings our population outdoors in a setting where citizens can get acquainted and develop relationships and conversation between each other,” says Cornelius Mayor Pro Tem Woody Washam. For Rob Rickard, a neck injury meant he shouldn’t jog to stay fit. “So biking is how I get my exercise and get around. I want to do something that is outside and healthy,” the Stratford Forest resident says. Then, too, for people of a certain age, biking is easy on the joints. Young and old can stay fit by cycling on a regular basis to the bank, post office or store. Rickard, who is a member of the Bike!Cornelius steering committee, says: “I always see deer on the McDowell Creek Greenway, coyote, turkeys. I also meet nice people.”


National Bike to Work Week is May 11-15

Kiwanis Splash Park breaks ground May 6

The Lake Norman Kiwanis Club Splash Park in Smithville Park will break ground at a special ceremony May 6 hosted by the Town of Cornelius. The splash park is an important addition to Cornelius, a lake town with limited access to amenities like the lake and neighborhood swimming pools. The Kiwanis club has committed $30,000 to the funding of the splash park and has pledged to lead the efforts to raise the additional $120,000 necessary to cover all costs for its construction. The Town of Cornelius will initially fund the construction with the understanding that the Lake Norman Kiwanis Club's fundraising campaign will work to reimburse that initial cost. Once the construction is complete, the Town will cover all costs for maintenance of the splash park. The splash park is scheduled to be completed late summer 2015. Tax-deductible contributions will go directly to fund the construction of the splash park. At press time, the Kiwanis has cash in the bank or pledges for $20,000. Contributions may be made online at: www.lakenormankiwanis. org or via check to: Kiwanis Foundation - LN Smithville Project, PO Box 2543, Cornelius, 28031.

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 5

Concern over water pressure and large homes heats up

It looks like the Town of Cornelius will do something about dangerously low water pressure levels in fire hydrants in remote corners of Cornelius like Belle Isle Drive. Water pressure in some hydrants is well below what it takes to knock down a fire in some of the enormous homes in the area, says Cornelius-Lemley Fire Chief James Barbee. “At this time there are no code requirements concerning sprinklers in residential structures, regardless of size. The fire service has pushed for a number of years to get this changed,” he says. Builders, of course, aren’t in favor of mandatory sprinkler systems because of the cost even though some

of the new homes on Belle Isle and Mollypop cost multiple millions of dollars to build. Race driver Denny Hamlin is building a 30,000 square foot house on Mollypop. The Cornelius Town Board is expected to address the hydrant situation in May. Low volumes are pretty much a fact where the water lines dead end, says Cornelius Commissioner Jim Duke. An expert on the municipal water utility business, Duke says low volumes limit the ability of the fire department to rapidly knock down a fire. “Low volume is an issue for several locations along the lake and all need to be addressed,” Duke says. One solution is to install “dry hy-

drants” that are sourced to long PVC pipes running out to the lake, giving firefighters immediate access to lake water with a pumper truck. Each dry hydrant would require a pad where the fire truck would park and a PVC pipe that would go out far enough to draw water at a depth below drought levels. “Simply put, when the lake was built and sewer/water service provided there were fewer and smaller homes along the lake,” Duke says. The bigger homes proliferating in remote areas may require more volume from a fire perspective, but not necessarily on a daily usage basis. “A solution will benefit all homes both great and small,” Duke says. The town will ask Charlotte Water to help foot the bill for a solution.

8 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

John Bradford: Hitting the ground running North Carolina Rep. John Bradford, a freshman Republican legislator, has hit the ground running in Raleigh. The energetic former Town Commissioner has sponsored more than a dozen bills in just three months in the state capitol. He has big shoes to fill: He was elected to fill the seat vacated by one of the most successful politicians in North Carolina history, former NC Speaker of the House Thom Tillis, also a former town commissioner. Before Tillis, of course, Cornelius was represented in Raleigh by Republican John Rhodes, who managed to earn the title of "least effective" legislator. No other than NC Sen. Jeff Tarte, the former mayor of Cornelius, says Bradford is a natural legislator. “He is earning the respect of his fellow legislators through his work ethic and committee work. John has been an absolute pleasure to collaborate with on key pieces of legislation. I feel like I am watching a younger version of Thom Tillis. It would not surprise me to see John follow a similar political path of responsibilities,” Tarte said. Bradford says he is thrilled to be in Raleigh. He still owns Park Avenue Properties, a real estate management business on West Catawba, and with his wife, Shea, is raising four children. He fielded questions from Cornelius Today's editor, Dave Yochum, on the first 90 days juggling legislating, business and family.

Grade yourself on how you've done. Bradford: In my first 90 days I have been the primary sponsor of 17 House bills and I have co-sponsored 34 House bills. One of my bills, "Lineman Appreciation Day in NC" was signed into law by the Governor. Many of the bills I am supporting are bi-partisan which demonstrates my willingness to work across party lines. As the Freshman Majority Whip I meet with the Majority Leadership Team every week offering my insight and perspective on various issues. I serve on seven committees and am the Vice Chairman of one committee. I was one of two people the Speaker of the House asked to represent NC at a Tax Policy Academy to be held in Chicago later this session. I was selected to serve a two-year term on a special House Finance Subcommittee on Annexation and Deannexation.

What are two things about the NC House that you did not know, or that surprised you?

Rep. Bradford in his Raleigh office with fourth-graders visiting from Mecklenburg County

Since session began I have taught myself about the history of our State Capitol so I could give private tours. Every week I take the NC House Pages and my constituents, if any, on a private Capitol tour. In District 98 I have already hosted one Coffee Chat in conjunction with two local Town officials and a second Coffee Chat is scheduled for May 4th. While I won’t grade myself I can share that I love this role and am giving it everything I have.

What are some of the key differences in governance in the Legislature vs. the Town Commission? Bradford: There are120 NC House members and, to date, 899 bills have already been filed. It’s impossible to speak on every single issue. I have learned to focus on the areas where I believe I can add the most value and then speak at the appropriate times. After serving on the Town Board with just five commissioners it was very easy to speak on every issue. In Raleigh there are party issues, both Democrat and Republican, which we deal with in party caucus meetings. I did not experience party-related issues while serving on a non-partisan Town Board even though commissioners have a specific party affiliation.

What are the top three pieces of legislation coming up and what is your position on them?

Bradford: House Bill 117 – NC Competes Act. This is a job growth and economic incentives bill that uses a reimbursement approach vs. giving away upfront credits. This bill gives the Governor access to $45 million to help recruit new businesses and expand existing businesses. An example might be to use a portion of this money to recruit a major automotive manufacturer. I cosponsored the bill and voted for it. The Senate has the bill for consideration. Senate Bill 20 – Motor Fuels Tax Rate. This bill originally passed in the Senate and the House did not agree with certain parts of the bill. The House and Senate worked very well together and came up with a compromise solution to lower the gas tax rate by 1.5 cents while also changing the tax rate formula to be less dependent on fluctuating oil prices and base it on a consumer pricing index. This is still not the long-term solution we need but I ultimately supported this bill because the current formula would have created financial hardships on the towns in District 98 as well as creating major issues with on-going road maintenance. House Bill 152 – New Historic Preservation Tax Credits. This bill offers tax incentives to those making capital investments and property improvements to historic buildings. I co-sponsored this bill and it has passed the House. The Senate has the bill for consideration.

Bradford: I did not know the formality of session. The rules in the NC House follow Mason’s Manual of Legislative Procedure and not Robert’s Rule of Order. In order to ask a question of another member you would first have to ask the Speaker if the other member will yield for a question. The Speaker asks the other member if he/she will yield for a question. In most cases the member yields but I have seen a few instances when he/she is not finished with their talking points and will say “no” which means you would have to sit down without asking your question. I am delightfully surprised how accessible everyone is such as the Governor and Lieutenant Governor. I see them more frequently than I imagined and I have been to both of their houses several times. Senators and House members seem to get along very well which is contradictory to what I read in the media before my election. It’s very refreshing and no one is intimidating – even to a freshman. We cannot eat or drink at our desks until after the first hour of session passes. We have water in the back in small solo cups if you get thirsty. I keep almonds in my desk which is helpful when session runs three-plus hours.

How much money do you have in your campaign account for 2016? Bradford: I am in the process of raising money and am not certain of my current balance. I believe I will have over $100,000 on-hand by 2016.

How is your family? How do you juggle family and Raleigh? Bradford: My family seems to be enjoying the experience. My wife often listens to the sessions over the internet so she can stay engaged in the process. I have to leave town every Monday by noon and I usually do not get home until late Thursday evenings. My schedule is the same every week until the end of July. I definitely miss the family and my dog. My kids use “facetime” to say goodnight which helps with the long distance and makes me smile. Online: Bradford explains how a bill is passed.

10 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

CMS to push for bond issue

Teacher pay still an issue vis a vis schools in S.C., Va. By Dave Vieser Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools will seek permission from the county to place a "significant" bond issue on the November 2016 ballot, according to Superintendent Ann Clark. Clark made her comments during the April 22 Newsmakers Breakfast held at The Peninsula Club. "I know that the 2016 election is a big one, but we have significant capital expenses and deferred maintenance issues which need to be addressed now," Clark said. "We'll be discussing those needs with our board and the county during the next several months." Clark spoke at the Cornelius Today and Business Today Newsmakers Breakfast along with District One School Board Member Rhonda Lennon. Clark, a 32 year CMS employee, was named Superintendent following the abrupt departure of Heath Morrison last year. She will remain in that position through 2016. "In Ann, we have the best leader of any school district," said Lennon. "If I could convince her to stay longer, I would." Lennon said Clark had planned to leave

the district for another position. Her predecessor, Heath Morrison, left last year amidst reports of bullying staff. For her part, Clark says her biggest concern with CMS is "the loss of the pipeline which attracts teachers and other employees into our district. We're losing talent to the city, the county and out of state districts where the pay is better." She said teacher salary increases approved last year by the state legislature were a "stride" in the right direction, but more must be done. Starting pay for teachers is 20 percent—or more—higher in South Carolina and Virginia In response to several questions about Common Core, a national program which details what K–12 students should know in English language arts and mathematics at the end of each grade, Lennon said the goal of the program is laudable: "There have been some hiccups, but it's logical to establish uniform standards across the state and the country. That's especially beneficial for families who relocate frequently."

Rhonda Lennon and Ann Clark field questions

She believes some of the program's critics take exception to the fact that the state and federal authorities are mandating standards, rather than the program goals and objectives themselves. On other issues: • Clark has established "a laser focus" on literacy in CMS which she calls "All about Literacy." She said she believes fourth grade is a key evaluation time in a student's education. "By then the student

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must be able to read well on their own, or they will begin to fall behind and may never catch up." She said that her definition of literacy includes reading, writing and math. • Lennon, who has three children, says parents must be an active and equal partner in a successful education, and that technology itself can't do it all. "In my family, we have technology timeout every day, when we put down the cell phones and actually communicate by speaking to each other and establishing eye contact." • Both officials said there were no plans for a major CMS redistricting, despite rumors to the contrary. "I suspect some of those rumors may have been spread by the charter schools," Lennon added. • During her time as superintendent, Clark wants to work on building internal pride among her district's employees while restoring public confidence in the system. Clark holds a master’s degree in special education from the University of Virginia. She also earned administrator, curriculum and supervision certification from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and earned her bachelor's degree from Davidson College. She was actually a candidate for the CMS superintendent position once before, in 2012. However, the board ultimately chose Morrison instead. She was also a finalist for the superintendent’s role in the Wake County Public School System Lennon was elected to the Board of Education in 2009 to represent the largest district in the CMS system. More photos online at

12 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

‘Exit 28 Ridiculousness’ Admin revealed Amanda Dudley created Facebook group to watch By Dave Yochum Amanda Dudley isn’t exactly a household word in Cornelius, but thousands of people know her. As of last week the Facebook group she created, Exit 28 Ridiculousness, was fast approaching 2,200 members. The description of her page is crisp: “Take advantage of all the time you are stuck sitting at exit 28 and document the absurdities.” And people do. To such an extent that people notice. Bill Russell, the head of the Lake Norman Chamber, was a frequent poster. Sen. Jeff Tarte still is. About Tarte, Dudley says: “The only person I’ve seen engaged is Jeff Tarte. ... He started commenting. ... I like that he is active and open and he hears. He has heard people’s concerns and he has made changes.” Among them was an odd one-way sign at an I-77 off-ramp onto Catawba Avenue. When Tarte saw the discussion on Exit 28 Ridiculousness, he had it removed. “I know Jeff has gained fans and he has gained voters, just by listening and responding,” Dudley says. “There’s 2,100 people and they’re talking about the changes they want to see. ... It’s like a virtual town hall.” She credits Tarte, a former mayor of Cornelius, for raising the profile of the page which has transitioned from mostly griping about the new bridge to gripes about the bridge, complaints about traffic on I-77 and the plan to widen it with toll lanes, recommendations for hair stylists and restaurants, traffic tips, information and links to articles on toll lane failures around the country, lost pets and where to get the best beef jerky and babysitter. This story unfolded on her page April 20: A Cornelius resident, differently abled and employed at Harris Teeter, had his sole means of transportation, a motor scooter, stolen. When a note about that went up on Exit 28 Ridiculousness, as well as a link to gofundme dot com, $1,500 came in. For others, the page can be treacherous. An out-of-area dentist, who quite

Amanda Dudley: Creator of virtual town hall has 2,100 followers

oddly advertised $450 crowns for new patients in Cornelius and Huntersville—not Davidson—was eaten alive. Some local merchants advertise special consignment sales, hardwood flooring, a 1958 Cadillac and even group garage sales at storage businesses. Four-letter words are not uncommon, however, so the Exit 28 Ridiculousness environment is not for the faint of heart—or banks, funeral homes, insurance companies and accounting firms. Dudley is delighted. For this mother of four, Exit 28 Ridiculousness is a little bit like TV. “I turn it on, grab the popcorn and wait,” she says. Free speech is an awesomely cool thing, and Exit 28 Ridiculousness is solid Americana. Dudley says there are about “30 real, hard-core players” who will tackle and discuss just about any issue, especially having to do with I-77. Local politicians generally discount the page, saying the 2,100-plus followers don’t necessarily live in Cornelius. None post or comment, except Tarte and Dr. Michael Miltich, who has softlaunched his campaign for Town Commission. “They view me as the troublemaker. ... I don’t do anything at all, I don’t have to,” Dudley says. As the marketing manager for a Big Four accounting firm, Dudley may know modern communication technologies inside out, but she started Exit 28 as a lark, a joke, and she never guessed that it would explode in popularity. “On my personal page, friends were taking pictures of workers [on the Diverging Diamond Interchange] not do-

ing anything, and I thought, ‘wouldn’t it be funny if we could create a Facebook page where we could put all those pictures? ... So that’s what happened. I just invited my friends and they invited their friends and it grew,” Dudley says. Born and raised in Endicott, New York, the Victoria Bay resident says she loves Cornelius, having moved here from Huntersville and, before that, Charlotte. “I love the lake. It feels like you have a vacation in your backyard. The sense of a small community. The weather,” she says. The aesthetic improvements to the I-77 bridge were a waste of money, she says, and the plans to widen I-77 with a public private partnership and toll lanes are “literally highway robbery.” Despite having a platform and a following Dudley says she has no plans to run for public office. “I don’t have the time and I don’t have the interest either,” she says. Nevertheless, Dudley has started a movement and it has grown organically. “I’m proud of it, I think it is a really neat thing to know that an action as simple as creating a Facebook page brought 2,100 neighbors together. ... We all had the same frustration, but there was no place for everyone to get together and voice those opinions. That page is full of educated, smart, witty people that know what they are talking about. I know I have learned a lot from the posts and comments. I’ve seen change as a direct result of the page,” she says.

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 13

Town News

D! L O S

YMCA plans to expand parking, but no cut-through to Church St. Jennifer Mars

Chur ch St


Propo lot expsed parking ansion

The Lake Norman YMCA has filed plans with the town seeking permission to expand its parking facilities to 356 spaces from 225. The $750,000 proposal has been tentatively scheduled for consideration at the Planning Board's May 11 meeting in Town Hall. "At a time when our program registrations continue to increase, we've literally outgrown our current parking facilities" said Ben Pinegar, Branch Executive for the Lake Norman YMCA. "Through this expansion program we believe that we can significantly improve the quantity of our spaces as well as the quality of our lot." The YMCA, which is on Davidson Street on the northern edge of Cornelius, at one time proposed cutting through from its parking lot to Church Street, which dead-ends just north of Cornelius Street. Residents in the quiet neighborhood opposed it because of the expected increase in cut-through traffic. While neighbors have expressed concerns that the proposed parking lot expansiont would mean a new Church Street entrance, that's not the case, according to town and YMCA officials. "There are no proposed connections to Cornelius, Church or any other streets," said Town Planning Director Wayne Herron. "They currently have a conditional use permit in order to operate, and their request is considered a major amendment." As a result, Herron said the matter must eventually come before the Town Board and it

will be handled as a quasi judicial matter, meaning commissioners cannot discuss any aspects of the proposal prior to the hearing. Herron met personally with HERRON residents to discuss the YMCA plan. According to Pinegar, the plans call for a complete resurfacing and relining of the existing lot to maximize spaces. There will be ten handicapped spaces near the existing entrances to the pool and building. A new interior driveway within the lot is planned so motorists can access spaces on the northeast portion of the lot without having to drive to the center of the lot, as they do now. Pinegar says that, if all goes smoothly, work will begin in late August and should be done by the end of November. The Lake Norman branch is one of 22 facilities comprising the Charlotte area YMCA. It was originally opened in 1969, serving several hundred visitors from a small building at the foot of Davidson Street where the indoor pool is still located. Today the 67,000 square foot building houses programs which serve over 7,000 people, most of whom come from Davidson, Cornelius and Huntersville. Membership between men and women is virtually even.

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14 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

News-e Police on lookout for new crossing guard at Cornelius Elementary School

April 14. The Cornelius Police Department is seeking a civilian to guard children using the crosswalk in front of Cornelius Elementary School when school starts in August. The current guard, Robert Jarosz, is moving out of state to be closer to family. The hours are roughly 8-9 am and 3-4 pm on school days. The police say no previous experience is necessary. The hourly pay rate has not yet been determined. Interested? Contact Sgt. Jeff Connors at jconnors@corneliuspd. org or by calling (704) 892-1363, extension 250.

News from

Aquesta bank expanding into SouthPark

March 31. Aquesta Bank has purchased a branch location of troubled CertusBank in the Southpark area of Charlotte. The branch, in the Sharon Station Office Park across from the main entrance of SouthPark Mall, will be a “flagship branch,” according to CEO Jim Engel. “For our current customers, we believe this location will greatly enhance the ease of banking with their favorite bank when shopping or working in the SouthPark area,” Engel said. CertusBank is exiting the North Carolina banking market after not meeting capital ratios ordered by federal regulators. Officials at the Greenville, SC-based financial institution are apparently realigning the bank with a more traditional approach to community banking as opposed to a more national approach. CertusBank was assisted in the transaction by Sandler O’Neill + Partners, an investment banking firm

that specializes in financial services companies. Aquesta Bank is in a growth mode, with two new branches opening in 2014. In 2014 the company $1.71 million (67 cents per share) vs. $1.47 million (57 cents per share) in 2013. The bank also increased its cash dividend by 10 percent to 11 cents per share. Engel said results “were somewhat lower than trend” due to the costs of opening two new branches along with a significant upgrade in our internet capacity. Aquesta initially expanded into Charlotte with the hiring of Ellen Stahlsmith two years ago as its first experienced commercial lender living in and solely focused on the Charlotte Market. She will have an office in the new SouthPark location. CertusBank lost $19.9 million in 2012 and $64.3 million in 2013, according to federal filings, amidst reports of lavish spending by its founders.

Domestic dispute goes out into the street, to neighbors

April 11. Cornelius Police have arrested Joshua Sloop, 36, after a domestic dispute at 20620 Willow Pond Lane. He apparently entered the victim’s SLOOP residence, and, once inside, used a knife to assault her. She fled to a neighbor’s house where Sloop was seriously injured. Both the victim and Sloop were transported to Carolinas Medical Center for treatment. Sloop was charged with two counts of first degree burglary, violation of a domestic violence protective order with a deadly weapon, stalking and communicating threats as well as other charges.

Strange one-way sign appears near Exit 28

Kiwanis immersed in new splash pad for Smithville

April 8. The Lake Norman Kiwanis have selected Playworld Preferred, a Huntersville-based distributor of recreation equipment, to build the new Splash Pad in Smithville. Groundbreaking could be late this month, with a grand opening in time for summer. The Cornelius Town Board has agree to front the money for the splash pad at the Smithville Park, the Kiwanis will raise the money and pay the town back. The approximately 1,300 sq. ft. splash

pad will be similar to the one at the center of Birkdale Village where children will be able to escape the summer heat while playing in various types of interactive water fountains. “We are very excited, not just for Smithville but for Cornelius as a whole,” Lisa Mayhew, co-chair of the Smithville Coalition said. “This will give us a great outlet for some of us to use the splash pad in the summer, until you guys give us access to the lake.” The estimated cost is $152,800 and cost an additional $15,100 annually to operate and maintain the splash pad. The Kiwanis club meets every Thursday at 7:30 am at Acropolis restaurant on Catawba Avenue. Info:

April 6. A one-way sign emerged during the last week at the southeast corner of Highway 21 and Catawba Avenue, and no one seems to know why it’s there. A one-way sign normally indicates that traffic on a particular artery only flows in the arrow’s direction, in this case eastbound, which is not case on Catawba Avenue. The sign faces motorists approaching the intersection on Highway 21from both the north and south, where the direction of travel is both east and west. The Exit 28/DDI project, which has had its share of issues, is a state project under the control of the DOT. Blythe Construction is performing the actual work for the DOT.

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 15

News-e $22,522 for a most excellent pole at Exit 28

Cornelius taxpayers are going to pay $22,522 so that a special metal pole can be installed at the Exit 28/DDI to handle a closed circuit TV camera for the NCDOT. The state had offered to mount a routine 60 foot wooden pole at no cost to the town, but town officials wanted a pole which would better match DDI’s enhanced aesthetics. It will be black and powder-coated. “This pole’s location is immediately adjacent to the DDI,” said Assistant Town Manager Andrew Grant. “We requested that DOT install a black powder-coated metal pole in lieu of a standard wooden pole. Our agreement with DOT calls for the town to pay $22,522, the cost difference between the wooden pole and the decorative pole.” The camera to be mounted on the pole is part of a system which provides video of traffic flow along the interstate, which is used to detect delays, accidents and other road conditions.

Two-day paddle boarding event in Cornelius April 16. My Aloha Paddle and Surf, along with NASCAR crew chief Ray Evernham, is hosting Stand Up for Autism paddle boarding event benefitting autism services May 8-9, at Port City Club on West Catawba. The event features competitive and recreational races, which are open to the general public. The race is sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA) and will be the first regional points race on Lake Norman. “After four years of promoting paddleboarding and introducing so many of our residents to the sport, it is so exciting to host a WPA race here in Lake Norman,” said Rob Bennett, owner of My Aloha Paddle and Surf. Stand Up for Autism supports IGNITE, a community center in Davidson for young adults with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome. IGNITE offers activities, skills training,

Major reconstruction of Jetton begins April 13

April 3. It looks like the Jetton Road rebuild project will be a massive undertaking, the likes of which Cornelius has never seen. “This construction will be tough and dirty, but hopefully nothing compared to the DDI,” one official said, referring to the construction process on Catawba Avenue over I-77. The two-mile stretch of Jetton (correctly pronounced J’tun) will be rebuilt from West Catawba to just past John Connor Road. Construction, delayed by rain, got under way the week of April 20. Because of construction and engineering flaws dating back to when Crescent Resources developed The Peninsula 25 years ago, the road bed will be dug down and ground down to about 15 inches, as much as five time deeper than an ordinary repaving job. This is an unprecedented rebuild, with major concerns about dust, dirt and road fragments, as well as a roughly two-inch drop from existing pavement down to the rocks that will become the road during parts of the construction. The recommended speed will be no more than 20 mph. Egress in and out of The Peninsula and adjacent neighborhoods may be blocked for up to 5 minutes at a time.

Blythe Brothers Asphalt, which has the $1.46 million contract to repave Jetton, should finish the project in mid-June when the home-selling season is in full swing. Construction officials expressed concerns about speeding on Jetton and the safety of construction workers. Work will begin at 7 a.m. each day and two lanes will be closed. Although the Town of Cornelius has recently engaged Davidsonbased Alta Planning + Design to develop a cycling plan, there are no plans for bike lanes on the four-lane road which is a popular route for cyclists. Members of the town’s nowdormant Transportation Advisory Board recommended changing lowering the speed limit on Jetton from 45 mph to 35 mph. The TAB no longer meets. There are also apparently no firm plans to lower the speed limit on Jetton. The Town of Cornelius has agreed to take over the road’s maintenance from the state when the rebuild is complete. Town Commissioner Jim Duke, said he was in favor of lowering the speed limit in the 45 mph area because of concerns about the safety of children, pedestrians and cyclists.

18 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

Home Sales

18417 Peninsula Cove Ln. for $1.359 million

These recent property transactions in Cornelius and Davidson were recorded by the Mecklenburg County Register of Deeds.

Cornelius 3/19/15 $270,000 South Creek Homes to Karen Dunton, 18029 Coulter Pkwy. 3/23/15 $720,000 Bryan & Rhonda Payne to Leonard Nemeth, 21314 Rio Oro Dr. 3/25/15 $272,000 Grace Waldon to Casey & Heather Down, 10526 Quarrier Dr. 3/26/15 $259,000 Candu LLC to Michael & Deirdre Jordan, 8814 Westmoreland Lake Dr. 3/27/15 $202,000 Cynthia Wickline to Sallie & James Jr. Reynolds, 210439 Willow Pond Rd.,

21314 Rio Oro Dr. for $720,000

3/27/15 $256,000 Amy Jo Carey to Lacey & Andrew Vickery, 19133 Brookgreen Garden Pl. 3/27/15 $197,000 Ryan & Katherine Davis to Jason & Summer Smigelski, 11222 Heritage Green Dr. 3/27/15 $230,000 Joseph & Brittany Cohen to Landon Downes, 10736 Trolley Run Dr. 3/27/15 $235,000 Jeffrey Flythe to Allen Plummer, 1243 Inn Keeper Way #99E 3/30/15 $227,000 Mark & Amanda Weinstein to Brad Morris, 9207 Island Overlook Ct. 3/30/15 $575,000 Stephen Moore & Carol Lesley to Douglas Letendre, 16814 Lake Shore Dr. 3/30/15 $274,000 Bradley II & Emily Morris to See HOMES, Page 19

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 19

Home Sales HOMES

from page 18

19210 Stableford Ln. for $638,000

18322 John Connor Rd. for $700,000 Joanne Furr, 9630 Willow Leaf Ln. 3/30/15 $395,000 South Creek Homes to Michael & Darcy Boeckman, 18437 Neville Ave. 3/31/15 $370,000 Ronald & Denise McMahon to Kurtis Haimbaugh, 18634 Harborside Dr. #36 3/31/15 $100,000 Charles & Mary Carpenter to Clifford Parsons, Unit 101 Admiral’s Quarters 4/1/15 $700,000 Saratoga Ventures LLC to Joel & Zerlina Suggs, 18322 John Connor Rd., Lot 2 of Connor subdivision 4/1/15 $1,359,000 Kathy Helou to John Hondros, 18417 Peninsula Cove Ln. 4/1/15 $178,000 Kelly & Megan Quick to Joseph Slagle, 10961 Heritage Green Dr. 4/1/15 $120,000 Harold & Donna Harbour to James Hogan & Kyung Campise, 20109-D Henderson Rd. 4/1/15 $1,153,500 David Rapp to Jeffrey & Shannon Kurz, 18824 Balmore Pines Ln. 4/1/15 $540,000 John & Suzanne Spittle to Kimberly Anderson, 22504 John Gamble Rd. 4/1/15 $453,500 Cunnane Group to Scott & Michelle Adams, 20118 Dowry Ct. 4/2/15 $330,000 South Creek Homes to Terry & Lucinda Martin, 18334 Glenealy Dr. 4/6/15 $387,000 South Creek Homes to Peter & Linda Urbach, 18307 Glenealy Dr. 4/6/15 $638,000 Deborah Ringler to Kurt & Maria Naas, 19210 Stableford Ln. 4/6/15 $342,000 South Creek Homes to Karen Spell, 17918 Coulter Pkwy. 4/6/15 $163,000 Crystal Beam to Colleem Mullan, 10946 Shelly Renee Dr. 4/7/15 $485,000 Matt Ostmeyer & Jill Romanyshyn to Toiyo & Constance Tammerk, 17424 Sailors Watch Pl. 4/7/15 $157,000 Brandon & Lauren Pollock to Natale DiCosmo, Lot AE2 Antiquity 4/7/15 $ 289,000 South Creek Homes to Frederick & Florence Rogers, 17914 Coulter Pkwy.

4/9/15 $220,000 Peter & Licia Hazzard to Mark Cebul, 20012 Coral Cove Ct. 4/9/15 $170,000 Thomas & Diane Pierce to Ashley Salazar & Travis Gregg, 17845 Railway Dr. 4/9/15 $525,000 Michael & Tammy Nadzieja to Peter & Irene Blaich, 22019 Lady Glencairn Ct.,

4/10/15 $176,000 Joshua & Annie Seier to Tinette Tyler, 10335 Bon Meade Ln.

Davidson 3/20/15 $427,000 Douglas Freeby Jr. to Anthony Scavo & Shelley Haithcock, 17031 Winged Thistle Ct.

3/27/15 $380,000 Weekley Homes to Heather & James Kennedy, 12221 Bradford Park Dr. 3/30/15 $438,000 Christopher & Caroline Blanchette to Kathryn & Daniel Barr, 207 McConnell Dr. See HOMES, Page 20

20 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

18824 Balmore Pines Ln. for $1.153 million 3/31/15 $618,000 Rachel Hall to Christopher & Caroline Blanchette, 13822 Tributory Ct. 3/31/15 $267,000 Townes At Bradford to Jonathan Bolenbaugh, 14220 Baudelaire Ct. 3/31/15 $262,000 Townes At Bradford to James & Susan Vogel, 14236 Baudelaure Ct. 4/1/15 $475,000 Stephanie & Daniel

Hopkins to Tanuja Naik & Sohil Joshi, 18422 Turnberry Ct. 4/1/15 $1,200,000 Brian & Kristin Glynn to Nelson & Kimberly Peace, 725 Hudson Pl. 4/6/15 $975,000 Tom Palmer Homes to John & Bonita Beeken, 17915 Nadghia Cir. 4/7/15 $629,000 Ian & Elizabeth Ferguson to Ronald & Catherine Neikro, 606 Wolfe St.

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22 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

State grant may mean more traffic enforcement in town For the first time since 2009, Cornelius is eligible for a state grant which would initially cover the salaries for two new traffic enforcement officers. The town police force currently has three such officers, spread out among all shifts. Their salaries are covered with town funds. The grant eligibility was revealed at a Town Board Meeting by Town Manager Anthony Roberts. "These grants come with a declining formula for their salaries, so we need to discuss this with the commissioners."

Editorial graphic by Stephen Nance

Police Chief Bence Hoyle welcomed the news. "Traffic enforcement is our most frequently requested service. Our three traffic officers work accidents, do DWI enforcement, and spend significant time in court, so they just make a dent in the requests that come in." Hoyle said traffic enforcement is a big priority for the town, but whether it can accept the grant is a budgetary decision the commissioners have to make. "I support them either way." If it seems as if there are fewer police on the beat that there were five, 10 or 15 years ago, you're right. In 1998 there were 2.68 officers per 100 residents. Now there are 1.83 officers per 1,000 residents. Hoyle said it would take 25 new officers to get back to 1998 levels. The lower per capita ratio reflects increased efficiencies from technology and a general decrease in property crime, some of it due to a major investment in video cameras. Also at the April 20 meeting, the Board: • Approved a new five-year agreement with the Lake Norman Regional Transportation Commission (LNTC). The mission of the LNTC is to address, work with, and advocate for transportation matters that impact the member jurisdictions of Cornelius, Davidson, Huntersville, and Mooresville. • Ratified changes in job titles suggested by the town staff to more accurately reflect the positions. There were no changes in salaries included in the changes. • Joint meeting of all four town boards: Mooresville, Davidson, Huntersville and Cornelius, will be held on Thursday April 30 at 6:30 pm at Port City Club in Cornelius.

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 23

Step up to ways to utilize space under your stairs

Under the stairs office niche by Sage Design Studio Photo: Leslie Goodwin Photography

The space below stairs in homes is often left underutilized by designers and builders. This area in the home is actually a great resource to gain a few more square feet of functional space in your home. The more common but “boring” use of this space includes coat closets and pantries or even a small bath or laundry room; however, I’ve come across some really great projects and found several more unique applications for utilizing space underneath stairs.

Brillo’s under the stairs wet bar after renovation. Photo: Brillo Home Improvements Inc and Edmunds Studios

Brillo Home Improvements Inc. in Milwaukee, Wisc., completed a basement level renovation and used this space to create a custom wet bar. The bar comes with built-in wine rack, beverage refrigerator, sink, and puck lights underneath the staircase. A stacked stone veneer backsplash completed this niche. Before renovation, this space was concealed with dated side paneling and the room felt more like a dungeon. This transformation was amazing and NARI thought so too. The National Association of the Remodeling

Industry presented Brillo with a gold award for this project in 2012. Before Brillo’s renovation, staircase space was hidden and concealed with dated paneling. Meanwhile Toronto-based Sage Design Studio in Toronto carved out a study niche under the staircase shown here. There was plenty of space to create an ample built-in work surface with drawers for storage below as well as open shelving above – a great place to store invoices, statements and other important records in the magazine file boxes shown here. This built-in office niche was a fabulous bonus that wasn’t part of the initial plan. Last but not least I’ve seen several designers use this space to create pet caves or playhouses for the children in the home. If you’ve been pondering a renovation for your home, the internet can be a great resource for ideas to come up with your own unique way to utilize otherwise dead zones in your home. Projects like these can be found on HOUZZ.COM, PINTEREST, and other inspirational home décor sites online. Jamie McNeilis is an Accredited Staging Professional and owner of Centerpiece Home Staging in Cornelius. Email Jamie at Jamie. for home decorating and improvement topics you would like covered in Home Decor

24 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

New Corporations

These corporations have registered with the N.C. Secretary of State


Opportunity Ahead! Contact Gail Williams at


about advertising opportunities

3/26/15 Pin Oak Films Inc., Robert B. Newkirk III, 19810 W. Catawba Ave., Cornelius 3/27/15 Carolina Arms Group LLC, Mark McCoy, 20248 Colony Point Ln., Cornelius 3/27/15 Legacy Leadership Academy Inc., Richard Walker, 20723 Torrence Chapel Rd., Ste. 201, Cornelius 3/30/15 Chad Everette Event Management Inc., Richard Zack Wyatt, 19028 Oakhurst Blvd., Cornelius 3/30/15 Delilah’s Home LLC, Ellen Sanderson Fauver, 19701 Bethel Church Rd., Ste. 103239, Cornelius 3/31/15 Cornerstone MGMT LLC, Karla Reed, 21612 Scott Crest Cir., Cornelius 3/31/15 Jennifer Haahs Design Group Inc., Vincent Greco, 19012 Kanawha Dr., Cornelius 4/1/15 Symmetry Pet Grooming Inc., Jennifer Montgomery, 20842 Catawba Ave., Cornelius 4/2/15 Saratoga Transport LLC, Steven Zelasko, 19315 Pocono Ln., Cornelius 4/2/15 Solar Capital Investments LLC, Robert L. Fryer, 21139 Cornelius St., Cornelius 4/2/15 Sun Light Energies LLC, Robert L. Fryer, 21139 Cornelius St., Cornelius 4/2/15 Teak Renewal LLC, John Scharer, 19108 Betty Stough Rd., Cornelius 4/6/15 Forest Park Homes LLC, John F. Hanzel, 19425-G Liverpool Pkwy., Cornelius 4/6/15 Local Solutions LLC, Frank Elton Free Jr., 19900 W. Catawba Ave., Ste. 103, Cornelius 4/7/15 EON Enterprises LLC, Lynne Gillooly, 20488 Chartwell Center Dr., Ste. E, Cornelius 4/7/15 Famous Toastery of Concord LLC, John F. Hanzel, 19425 G. Liverpool Pkwy., Cornelius 4/8/15 First Choice Insurance Brokers LLC, Cynthia D. Griffin, 18512 Peninsula Club Dr., Cornelius 4/8/15 Hybird Homes N C Inc., William O’Connell, 10316 Meadow Crossing Ln., Cornelius 4/9/15 HGI Logistics Inc., Hoover Gutierrez, 10064 Switchyard Dr., Cornelius 4/9/15 Hidden Pine Properties LLC, Hugh

Franklin, 19421-A Liverpool Pkwy., Cornelius 4/9/15 Lake Norman Local Apparel Company, Jennifer Bushinski, 21204 Island Forest Dr., Cornelius 4/9/15 Lake Norman Local Real Estate & Development Group Inc., Jennifer Bushinski, 21204 Island Forest Dr., Cornelius 4/9/15 O2 EMC Portfolio 1 LLC, Adam Will Foodman, 17115 Kenton Dr., Ste. 206A, Cornelius 4/9/15 Summit Management P.C., Douglas Curley, 10306 Meadow Crossing Ln., Cornelius 4/10/15 Mashburn Development LLC, Andrew Mashburn, 18261 John Connor Rd., Cornelius 4/10/15 Prophecies Unveiled Inc., Raymond J. Zeman, 19501 West Catawba Ave., Ste. 280, Cornelius 4/10/15 SF Reagin LLC, Allaire B. Cramer, 17415 Grand Central Way, Cornelius 4/13/15 Charlotte Temp Homes Ltd., Sandra Cristina Silva, 19001 Peninsula Point Dr., Cornelius 4/13/15 The Foundry Collaborative LLC, Sandra L. Knox, 19410 Jetton Rd., Ste. 130, Cornelius

Davidson 3/24/15 MER Internet Concepts LLC, Martha E. Phodes, 720A Eastway St., Davidson 3/27/15 LKN Indoor Rowing LLC, Carla Herin Jenkins, 1120 Churchill Rd., Davidson 3/30/15 Honey Bee Enterprises LLC, David Devoe, 10805 Peddlers Ct., Davidson 4/1/15 Big Red LLC, Jeffrey B. Shealy, 18102 Bear Track Dr., Davidson 4/6/15 DB Automotive Real Estate Holdings LLC, Erika M. Erlenbach, 209 Delburg St., Ste. 204, Davidson 4/6/15 Firefly Salon LLC, Shawn A. Copeland, 215 S. Main St., Ste. 301, Davidson 4/7/15 Kookswear LLC, Shawn A. Copeland, 215 S. Main St., Ste. 301, Davidson 4/7/15 W & T Industrial Properties LLC, Teresa Smith, 405 Arrow Point Ln., Davidson 4/9/15 Viking North Properties LLC, Dale W. Gillmore, 235 Grey Rd., Davidson 4/10/15 Pandera Southeast LLC, Bryan Melugin, 10694 Sapphire Trl., Davidson

More new corporations are online at

26 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

Welsh Leek-Asparagus Pie is a tasty alternative to quiche For Shelia Perry, cooking and making yummy dishes are just about second nature at this point. She ran a successful traveling concession business that made a lot of dough. Fried dough that is. Like elephant ears, those truly fattening treats that people line up for at state fairs and carnivals. “That’s how I picked up cooking,” the Blue Stone Harbor resident says. Perry had her own secret recipe for the yeast-based confection, which was popular at state fairs from Raleigh to Canada. Naturally she won’t share the recipe for the dough, but suffice it to say there was yeast and powdered milk, but no eggs. The traveling concession business was always interesting, and Perry approached it entrepreneurially. She launched a rope ladder game, and made good money catering to upwardly mobile people. “Location, as they say, is everything. When you first start out it is hard to get those sweet spots. You are constantly traveling, and each state has their own health rules. The ‘lot’ man tells you where you will be situated. It’s hard work!” She and husband Roger have lived in Blue Stone Harbor since 2007, moving here from the Boston region. Hobbies, besides boating, include gardening in containers at home. To-

matoes are a specialty. The cherry and grape varieties perform well in pots, she says. One success tip for people in HOA-controlled neighborhoods— if the sun shines only in the front—is planting marigolds around the base of the tomato. “It disguises the plant and helps with bugs,” she says. Shelia created this recipe just for Cornelius Today readers. Called Welsh Spring Leek and Asparagus Pie, it’s like a quiche, without the crust—and no eggs. Gruyere cheese provides a savory note, but meat-lovers can add ham or bacon. “You could use this for a brunch, or dinner with salad,” Shelia says. “It’s good at room temperature or heated.”

Welsh Spring Leek and Asparagus Pie

Ingredients • 1 (9 inch) refrigerator pie crust • 2 tablespoons butter • 3-4 leeks depending on size (light green and white parts only). Slice lengthwise, and then slice in to half moon pieces, then rinse well and drain. • 1 cup asparagus (sliced on the diagonal) • 1 cup light cream

Preparation • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. • Melt butter in large saucepan over medium low heat. Stir in leeks and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 7 minutes until wilting. Add asparagus and continue cooking for 3-4 more minutes. Leeks should be wilted and asparagus partially cooked. Season with salt and pepper. • Reduce heat to low and stir in cream, cheese and nutmeg, cook until cheese is melted. • Pour mixture in to pie shell.

• Salt and Pepper to taste

• Bake in preheated oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until custard is set and top is golden.

• Pinch of nutmeg

• Allow to sit for at least 10 minutes

• 1 1/4 cups shredded gruyere cheese

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 27

Scene and Heard

Work continued even on Sunday morning April 12 at the Antinquity Retail Center. A 56,385 square foot Harris Teeter will anchor the center, which has signed commitments from New Method Cleaners, Dunkin Donuts, Lee Nails, Great Clips and Truliant Federal Credit Union. The Harris Teeter is expected to open by late summer.

Lisa Mayhew, of the Smithville Community Coalition, helped organize volunteers at Operation Curbside Cleanup in the Catawba North, Old Mill Village and Smithville neighborhoods on Saturday April 18. Volunteers included members of the Lake Norman Rotary, YMCA and local churches.

On Saturday, April 11 Kiwanis clubs participated in a day of service. Nancy Aneralla worked in the garden at the Angels and Sparrows Soup Kitchen in Huntersville. Other tasks were pressure washing, cleaning gutters, painting and organizing the walk-in freezer. the Lake Norman Kiwanis meets each Thursday morning at Acropolis in Cornelius. Info: If your service club has an upcoming project, we're glad to post an announcement online or in print. If you have a special, high-resolution photo to share, send it our way and we will try to include it. Email:

28 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015

On Sunday, Come Worship With Us Bethel Presbyterian Church 19920 Bethel Church Rd., Worship 9am & 11am Cornelius Presbyterian Church 21209 Catawba Ave., Worship 10:30am Church of the Good Shepherd Lake Norman YMCA, 21300 Davidson St. Worship 10am First Baptist Church 21007 Catawba Ave., Worship 11am Grace Covenant Church 17301 Statesville Rd, Worship 8am, 9:30am, 11:15am Mt. Zion United Methodist Church 19600 Zion St., Worship 8:30am, 9:45am, 11am

NorthCross Church 11020 Bailey Rd., Ste H, Worship 10:15am Point of Grace Lutheran Church 20700 N. Main St., Worship 8:30am, 11am The River Church 18731 W. Catawba Ave., Worship 10:30am Union Bethel AME Zion Church 20738 Catawba Ave., Worship 11am Community in Christ Lutheran Church 7621 Norman Island Dr., Worship 9:30am, 11am, Wednesday 7pm Calvary Chapel 18731 W. Catawba Ave., Worship 10am

Senior News

Panel discussion May 8 focuses on changes that occur when you age

Are you old? Or are you ational programs, the political older? I am older than my system, the school systems, daughter, but does that make their faith communities, all the me old? My son is older than while striving to remain healthy my daughter but he is not and independent. Joanne Ahern Seniors Columnist old. Does old mean worn We as a community then out, past its prime, along in years? How should strive to provide opportunities about experienced, practiced, endur- to enrich the lives of our older adults ing, and long lasting? It’s all in how we through promoting and supporting aclook at things, label things, feel things. tivities for wellness and social inclusion. May is Older Americans Month and I There are many places where that can for one want to celebrate it. I am older, take place. Most churches have older somewhat wiser, less encumbered by adult groups where people can learn topropriety, quicker to laugh, and more gether. The YMCAs, fitness clubs, and compassionate than when I was young- community parks create places where er. I want to celebrate my age and stay they can engage in healthy lifestyles. as vital and engaged for as long as I can. Social opportunities abound at senior Older Americans Month was estab- centers, civic organizations, and clubs. lished in 1963 when the average person Maintaining mental health is easy to do could expect to live to only 65. The Na- with the abundance of workshops, semtional Council of Senior Citizens met in inars, continuing education classes, April of that year with President John F. and mental and physical games. Kennedy. There was growing concern The North Mecklenburg Senor Cenfor older Americans in our country and ter is one place where you can get betas a result of that meeting, May was des- ter as you get older. On May 8 there ignated as “Senior Citizens Month,” the will be a panel discussion on knowprelude to “Older Americans Month.” ing what to do “when things happen According to the Organization for as you age.” Experts in five different Community Living, Older Americans fields will be discussing the what, the Month has been a time to acknowl- how and the when with regards to our edge the contributions of past and health as we age. current older persons to our country, in particular those who defended our country. Every president since Kennedy has issued a formal proclamation asking that we pay tribute in some way to older persons in their communities. Older Americans have made and continue to make contributions to their families, friends, and neighbors through their stalwart support of recre- Joanne Ahern and senior Sandra Hoyt

Thank you to all of our 2015 Big Day Sponsors at the Lake 11 ÂŽ

2015 Presenting Sponsor 2015 Admiral Sponsors

2015 Captain Sponsors 2015 Commander Sponsors

Aquesta Bank - Lake Norman Kiwanis - The McIntosh Law Firm - Tricia and Brian Sisson - Chantal and Denis Bilodeau - Jim Duke Joshua Dobi - Dr. Nancy and Jeff Tarte - Lake Norman Realty

2015 Mates Sponsors

Chuck Travis - Troy Stafford - Dirk Tischer and Heidi Hansen - Alton’s Kitchen and Cocktails- Team Honeycutt - Sharon and Woody Washam - Mauriello Law Office

2015 Skipper Sponsors

Dixie Dean - Thom and Susan Tillis Margaret and Blair Boggs - Mark and Lynette Rinker - Tracey and Dan Stehle - Howard Kaplan - Marcy and Jim Carlyle - Tom Dutton

2015 Crew Sponsors

Lapis Financial - Diane and Dave Gilroy Gail Williams In Memory of Bob Williams - Fresh Chef - Fine and Motherlode Wines

30 • CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015


Your comments and opinions since 2006

Cold defined. "As an animal advocate, i'd like to say i am very sorry for Cami's short life and the Hondros' loss. However, leashed animals are not hit by autos nor do they attack children or other animals. whether we're talking Pit Bulls or Goldens, a good leash makes for good dogs." —via

Y? "The YMCA is taking a proposal to Town Hall for more parking spaces. We, the neighbors, are thinking this is their idea trying to get closer to Cornelius Street and end up with a through street." —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on • The YMCA will bring its plan for more parking before the Planning Board in May at the earliest, which means the soonest the Town Board can hear it is June. There is no connection to Church Street or any other street in their plans. Our story on the Y's proposal is on Page 13.

More on the “Y” “I live on Cornelius Street adjacent to the YMCA property one street over from me. I understand they are trying to get permission from Cornelius officials to add more parking spaces. For years the Y has been overselling memberships and inconveniencing neighbors on Cornelius Street with there public announcement system from early AM to late PM. I have even come home before and could not get to my driveway because a kids’ exercise class was being held in front of my house. My neighbor had someone from the Y pull in her driveway, blocking her in. Let an event be going on and you’re lucky to make it to your house with all the parking on the street and people thinking anything and everything is OK. We are all sick of it, you do not need more parking spaces to grow, you need to downsize the YMC(TAX EXEMPT)A. Have a good day.” —via

Really? "Maybe they were on their way to a fire, but the driver of the white Escalade on West Catawba is a maniac." —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

Driving while Kia “Someone needs to go back to driving school! To the driver of a silver KIA license plate 3XXX turning left onto Bethel Church Road at 3:15 p.m. March 24, you need to go back to drivers school. You do not have right of way when turning left! Drivers turning right have right of way, not left. You almost caused an accident!” —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on • We placed the X’s on the digits/ numbers of the license plate because there are two sides to every story. We’ve let Cornelius Police know they might be on the lookout for a silver Kia with the full plate

Publix vs. Farris Teeter How to fix the bridge (and Food Lion) "The hype about Publix is all well and good, but I want to give a shout-out to Harris Teeter for always going out of their way to hire differently abled young adults. That's a big thing for them and for us parents." —via

Magnolia sign is out to lunch “The entrance sign to Magnolia Estates, located off Catawba Avenue is incorrect. There are three words that need to be removed from the sign: “HIBACHI SUSHI BUFFET.” The restaurant that had this name is long gone, and was torn down to make way for the recently opened Publix. Could the property management for the shopping center take care of this, in what is now been over a month since Publix opened, and is long overdue. There is no HIBACHI SUSHI BUFFET here.” —via anonymous SoundOff Cornelius contact link on • The words “sushi” and “buffet” should never be used together

"It seems to me that the cable visibility issue can easily be solved. Simply wrap the two poles and cables in white conduit. This method appears to have been used with success in bridges in South Carolina. The cables can be seen for a distance of several miles." —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on • We have forwarded your idea to Town Manager Anthony Roberts

Daytime Road Work Why does NCDOT choose to close major thoroughfares during daytime hours. If we can't get to work in a timely manner, how do they expect us to earn enough money to pay our taxes? —via anonymous SoundOff Cornelius contact link on

Planning ahead. Not “Confused why we wouldn’t put in a bike lane when repaving Jetton Road.” —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

Suzie and Sam deserve Cameras for 77 Why can't the cameras be mounted Parking in the fire lane better to one of the polls that are already

Sound off!: Do the patrons of Brueggers Bagels who park in the fire lane feel entitled or are they just incredibly lazy? They leave their car running and they take their kids in to order a bagel. What kind of an example are you setting for your kids? Park in the designated parking areas and leave the fire lane open. Maybe you will even get a little bit of exercise!!!! —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

“Please stop poisoning muskrats. There is no approved muskrat poison on the market. Poisoning a muskrat is not a good idea. Keep in mind that poisoning a wild animal will affect other animals along the food chain, and cause more damage than you may be aware of. I am tired of burying poisoned muskrats.” —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

there, you have four poles to choose from , and to watch the traffic that NCDOT created or for the tolls roads that you also cram down our throats. Do we really need another pole at the cost of $22,000.More wasteful spending of taxpayers money. —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

Opinion Pole: Time for change? "$25,000 to upgrade a pole that NCDOT was providing for free?! When will the wasteful spending end? Cornelius deserves change in November." —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

CORNELIUS TODAY • May 2015 • 31


Smith Circle not a trash dump "I walk my dog along Smith Circle between Floral and School streets, a pleasant area when clear of trash. Every day I pick up plastic bottles, candy wrappers, fast food bags, beer cans and recently an empty glass liquor bottle. I'm venting because I know it's futile to complain, as the offenders probably can't read, or certainly aren't interested enough in anything but themselves to read about it in Cornelius Today." —via anonymous SoundOff Cornelius contact form on www.corneliustoday. com

Define 'enjoy'

"I wish the railroad would clean up their mess along the rail line on Hwy. 115. The repairs have been completed for months and yet they leave their mess for us to enjoy daily." —via anonymous SoundOff contact link on

Aesthetically un-pleasing "What is the nasty holding pond that is to the right side of the I-77 North OnRamp at Exit 28? I see it every day as I merge off Catawba Avenue onto I77 going North. The pond backs up to the Days Inn parking lot and is rather unattractive. I wonder if this body of water is part of the new Exit 28 aesthetic improvements?" —via • Cornelius Planning Director Wayne Herron responds: "There are no ponds that I am aware of that are part of the DDI in any way. The pond being referred to is low spot on the private property behind Days Inn. Water does pond and there is a small spring that runs water through the area in addition to it being a natural draw for storm water."

To the Cornelius Town Board, regarding the lamp-posts on exit 28 I arrived home from a long business trip to find some tall lanterns that appear to attempt a resemblance of suspension bridge pylons (?), but seem to neither support any of the bridge structure, nor add to the design aesthetics of the Catawba Ave. bridge over I-77. This was quite an additional surprise, as last summer we were all subjected to several months of experiencing massive traffic delays in order for the DOT to build something called a "diverging diamond" (?) which appears to have succeeded in adding a traffic light, re-routing traffic to the wrong side of the road and back again, and costing approximately six (6)-million dollars. As a tax-paying citizen of Cornelius, I have a few questions regarding the subsequent addition of the large lamp-posts; 1). Who designed the large lampposts? 2). Who approved the large lampposts? 3). Who built the large lamp-posts? This is the most important question, as the local news folks reported that

the lamp-posts cost approximately $2-million dollars. I am very confused about this fact, as a large part of my business is to design and erect tower structures. To this day, I have not seen lamp-posts that cost anywhere near this amount, let alone 2-million. My business also specializes in lighting the tops of such structures, as one of our areas of expertise is to manage projects for broadcast towers. I am hoping to get some answers to the above, or perhaps an explanation of where all that money went. Perhaps there were meetings to discuss all of this, attended by folks who have a lot of extra time to think up such projects. Or perhaps the meetings were not well-attended, I am not sure. If the latter is the case, I would submit it is likely because the citizens you represent were too busy to attend, occupied with making the money which paid for the lamp-posts. Thank-you all in advance for your answers to the above inquiries, and much thanks for you time and service.

Assistant Town Manager Andrew Grant responds: • The mast and cable system (two masts with cables that flank each side of each mast) was designed & engineered by Ratio Architects. • The mast and cable system went through a design and engineering review and approval process with NCDOT, since the bridge is an NCDOT facility. • The mast and cable system was constructed by NCDOT’s DDI contractor, Blythe Construction. • The DDI aesthetics is being constructed in two phases. The mast and cable system (which is part of Phase I) costs $170,000. Phase I is nearly complete, and is estimated to cost approximately $700,000. Phase II is to be constructed in the gore/ramp areas and includes four masonry abutments with columns, lanterns and landscaping. Phase II is projected to cost approximately $1.5M.

Letter to the Editor Good things happen I would like to share my story of what happened this evening at the Westmoreland Athletic Complex. I will give you the short version as I hope that you will read this entire story. After a long day at our softball tournament there, it was time to pack up and go home only to find out that we couldn't leave because we didn't have our keys. We already had plans for another one of the family members on our team to give us a ride all the way home to Monroe NC. I was unsure if my vehicle was going to be safe or even worse be towed because of leaving it there overnight. Luckily, a patrol car pulled in just as we were getting ready to leave. It was Officer Russell. I asked him if I was ok parking my car there but rather than saying yes and not caring, he offered to have K9 Britt take a look for them. I was shocked at the offer and graciously accepted his offer. I explained to Officer Russell all the places throughout the Complex that I had

been that day. He let K9 Britt go and he scoured the grounds. Officer Russell had said the girls could come watch him work and they were thrilled to do so. Within 10 minutes K9 Britt locked in on an area and found my keys. Myself and my whole family and the other family that was driving us home were AMAZED at K9 Britt. Afterwards, Officer Russell let the girls meet and pet the dog. He explained the training K9 Britt has, what he is used for, and the different things he smells all at the same time. It was a great learning experience for us all. Officer Russell did not have to stop and take time out of his day tonight, but he chose to. Not everyone has the opportunity to witness a K9 dog in action, but because he was willing to stop and offer his (and K9 Britt's) services, now we all have a memory that we will never forget. Thank you Officer Russell and K9 Britt from myself and the rest of our families.

Joe McCauley, Coach of the Charlotte Rage Fastpitch, Monroe —Charlotte Rage is a 14 and under league

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Cornelius Today - May 2015  

Cornelius Today - May 2015