Public Conversations

Public Conversations is an ongoing series of community forums designed to convene Charlotte-area residents for discussion of timely and relevant topics.  Our goal is to create comfortable settings that encourage a stimulating and enlightening exchange of ideas.  By organizing these Public Conversations, WFAE intends to serve as a catalyst for community dialogue.  Participants are encouraged to engage in conversation with a cross-section of community representatives, expert panelists, and with each other.

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Public Conversations
12:00 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Charlotte's Arts And Culture Groups: How Can They Survive... And Thrive?

Firebird outside the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art.
Credit James Willamor / Flickr

Arts and cultural organizations in Charlotte are struggling financially in the wake of the recession and cutbacks in community funding and donations.    Many of these non-profits have had to reduce staff and cut costs and services.   A few organizations have suspended all or parts of their operations, and others say they have little or no cash reserves to sustain them through any future financial droughts. 

This WFAE Public Conversation explored the challenges faced by these organizations, how they hope to build a stronger future, and what’s at stake for the community.

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A Trifling Place
12:40 am
Mon October 28, 2013

'Cupid' Ranks Southern Drawl Most Attractive in North America

A new "study" found that 45 percent of men prefer women with a Southern accent, according to Cupid.com.
Credit Cupid.com

Turns out the “lilting twang of the South” is the most attractive accent in North America, according to a “study” by Cupid.com. From their press release:

When it comes to romance, most of us dream of long lazy days in the sun, epic sunsets and, ahem, rolls in the hay.

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Public Conversations
7:00 pm
Thu September 19, 2013

On Location: The Charlotte Area Film Industry

WFAE’s Public Conversation on the local film industry provided insights into how movies, television shows and commercials are cast, shot and produced in the Charlotte area.   Panelists and audience members also discussed how the film industry impacts the region’s economy.  And the forum explored contrasting views on North Carolina’s financial incentives for the film industry.


Charlotte Talks
9:00 am
Tue September 3, 2013

Eastside Charlotte Update

Vietnamese market and other shops on Central Avenue in east Charlotte.
Credit Google Maps Streetview

The east side of Charlotte has been developing for a number of years. An area that used to be avoided by many people, now has a growing and diverse population. More ethnic restaurants and small shopping malls are sprouting up. A restaurant tour in September promises to sample tastes from around the world right in east Charlotte. And most recently a plan to demolish Eastland Mall and make way for a movie studio is tentatively moving forward. Charlotte is already a hub for the filming of movies and television, and this would extend that industry further east. We talk with Charlotte Mayor Pat Kinsey and others about the development of east Charlotte.

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Politics
9:30 am
Tue August 20, 2013

Charlotte Moral Monday Focuses On Voting

Organizers estimated more than 2,500 showed up for Charlotte's Moral Monday rally in Marshall Park on August 19.
Tasnim Shamma

The state's chapter of the NAACP has been leading weekly protests in Raleigh called Moral Monday.

It's a movement led by clergy members that's now on a state-wide tour and made its latest stop in Charlotte Monday night.


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Local News
3:40 pm
Mon August 12, 2013

Charlotte Won't Have A Parade This Thanksgiving

The Carolinas' Carousel Parade announced on Friday that the parade would be cancelled this year.
Carolinas' Carrousel Parade

Charlotte will not have a Thanksgiving Day parade this year for the first time in more than 65 years. That's because the organizers of the Carolinas' Carrousel Parade were unable to raise the money. Belk stepped down as the main sponsor after last year's parade. Jeff Collins is president of the Carrousel board of directors.

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Local News
9:15 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Local Buyout Program Saves Homes From Flooding

Charlotte Firefighters & Police Officers responding to a service call in southeast Charlotte in August of 2011.
Credit flickr/charlottefire

It's been raining a lot in the Charlotte area. Since June 1, we've received about 12 inches of rain. That's about 7 inches above normal. About six homes were flooded last week in northwest Charlotte. But city officials say it would have been much higher if it weren't for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg floodplain buyout program. In the past 12 years, they've relocated 500 families.


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A Trifling Place
5:19 pm
Fri July 12, 2013

Episode 11: Is Charlotte In The Bible Belt?

The cross at First Baptist Church West.
Tasnim Shamma

Welcome to A Trifling Place, a podcast dedicated to exploring the ins-and-outs of Charlotte.

When I accepted this job, I knew I was choosing to live in the so-called "Bible Belt". I didn't think much of it at the time, but my travel guidebook on Charlotte warned me to get used to the question, "Which Church Do You Go To?" Or in my case, "Which Mosque Do You Go To?" And it was right.

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Local News
10:08 am
Thu June 27, 2013

CDOT Removing One-Way Streets Uptown

The Center City Transportation plan calls for Charlotte to have a lot less of these.
Credit Counse / Flickr

Uptown Charlotte could look a lot different in five years—not the skyline, the streets. Several one-way streets will become two-way streets under the city’s Center City Transportation Plan, which is scheduled for completion around 2020. The plan will also affect Uptown this summer, when the Charlotte Department of Transportation starts converting a section of Poplar Street to a two-way road.

Ben Bradford spoke with Ashton Watson, project manager at CDOT. Watson says one of the goals is to slow down traffic. First, they discussed the upcoming changes.


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Education
4:36 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Northeastern-Charlotte Adds Doctor Of Education

Northeastern-Charlotte is now accepting applications for a doctor of education.
Credit Northeastern University

Boston-based Northeastern University is now offering a third doctoral degree program through its Charlotte campus. The UNC Board of Governors approved a doctoral degree in education last week, making it the school's third doctoral degree. The first two -- in nursing and physical therapy -- were approved in May. They were the first to be approved for a university not based in North Carolina. Cheryl Richards is the CEO and dean of the Charlotte campus. She says a doctor of education or EdD is different from a PhD because it's not focused on research. 

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