Friday, December 18, 2009

Backyard Tourist

The Backyard Tourist
By Christa Wagner

The following paragraph came from an article written in the Charlotte Viewpoint Metropolitan Ideas and Art. I have extracted an excerpt from the column. To read the full article visit Charlotte Viewpoint’s website , scroll down and click on “Read our most recent issue here.”
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“Psst. Guess what they’re calling us? We’re the urban bananas. The nickname refers to the arc along I-85 between the Triangle, Triad, and Charlotte. I think it’s kin of cute. But lately, I’ve been peeling away from my downtown Durham apartment and heading southwest to discover North Carolina’s Central Park counties: Randolph to Richmond by way of Montgomery and Moore. The eight counties that make up the cleverly named Central Park have a lot to offer the urban day tripper. In mid-November, for example, I enjoyed the Celebration of Seagrove Potters festival. There were too many beautiful things I wanted to buy, some beyond my student budget, but other pieces were perfect. Who knew there were so many uses for a slab of colorfully glazed pottery the size of my cell phone? (5$ each.) I bought four: one for my keys, two for used tea bags, and a pretty blue one for the odds and ends that always accumulate on the kitchen counter. I was in Seagrove both as a tourist eager to stock up on holiday gifts and as a researcher, so to speak, for my, graduate work in rural entrepreneurship. In addition to famous Seagrove ceramics, I marveled at glass blown at the STARworks Center for Creative Enterprise and ate a perfectly grilled pimento cheese at Blake’s restaurant in Candor, where that day Congressman Larry Kissell was also having lunch. , STARworks Center for Creative Enterprise is fascinating. STAR stands for Small Town Area Revitalization; it's a nonprofit located in the town of Star focused on growing businesses to one day place in the region's downtown areas. These businesses have a lot of appeal for its urban neighbors, in my opinion. And you can check out the whole region on just one tank of gas".........

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