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Catawba Two Kings Casino seeing success

 Special to the Herald 

Since the Catawba Two Kings Casino opened the doors of its pre-launch facility on July 1, guests have been enjoying a thrilling, new gaming destination 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The casino has been a dream of the Catawba Nation for a decade, and even though it’s not quite complete, there is still a lot to celebrate during the first weeks of the pre-launch facility’s opening.
Throughout the first weeks of its opening, the Catawba Two Kings Casino has seen over 100,000 guests come through the front doors. With over 500 slot machines to choose from, guests can win big and have fun. There have been dozens of jackpots won since the casino’s opening, including several $10,000 cashouts and even one guest going home with a $75,000 jackpot! Popular games like Panda Magic and Golden Century seem to be crowd favorites for casino guests.
The Community and Business Impact of the Casino. The Catawba Two Kings Casino has had a positive impact on the community. Kings Mountain officials have commented that since its opening, the casino has brought in more crowds and revenue for local businesses, including shops and restaurants. The casino is also participating as a sponsor for Kings Mountain city events and activities, helping draw in more attendees from other areas. Kings Mountain mayor Scott Neisler commented, “They have really shown they want to be a part of the community in a positive way.”
It’s not just the area of Kings Mountain that is seeing positive trends since the opening of the casino. Trent Troxel, vice president of the Catawba Nation Gaming Authority and Catawba Nation citizen, explained “The opportunities are endless for the next generation.” Mike Ulizio, president of the Catawba Nation Gaming Authority commented, “The casino will help increase resources available for the Catawba Nation to improve their quality of life.”
In addition to adding an entertaining, profitable attraction to the area, the Catawba Two Kings Casino is responsible for providing jobs to 235 employees thus far. In April 2020, the Catawba Nation’s unemployment rate was 13.8 percent. However, this number is predicted to shrink as the growing Catawba Two Kings Casino creates jobs for Catawba citizens, as well as the Kings Mountain community. Ninety of the 235 employees are Kings Mountain residents, and 34 are Catawba Citizens.
   What to know before you go. If you’ve yet to visit the Catawba Two Kings Casino, but you’re ready to stop in - here’s a list of tips that can help prepare you to have the best experience possible.
Get directions. The casino is located at 538 Kings Mountain Blvd. Kings Mountain, North Carolina, 28086 - less than 40 miles west of Charlotte. Use Exit 5 on I-85, turn right onto Dixon School Road, and continue onto Kings Mountain Blvd. The casino is not far from Exit 5.
Sign up for the Lucky North Club. One of the best ways to enjoy the Catawba Two Kings Casino and all it has to offer is by signing up for the Lucky North Club before your visit. This rewards and loyalty program offers benefits to its card holders. Using the Lucky North Club Card is the easiest way to enjoy the gaming experience.
While you’re there. Don’t forget to take your ID with you! Guests are required to show ID for all large jackpot payouts. If you forgot to bring cash with you, ATMs are available. If you work up an appetite during your gameplay, there is a limited food and beverage menu available for guests. As of now, no alcohol is available for purchase.
Plan to visit in the afternoon. According to Mike Ulizio, president of the Catawba Nation Gaming Authority, "The casino certainly sees larger crowds during the day but is attracting a good number of players during the night and early morning." If you’re looking to avoid the crowds due to social distancing or just to prevent waiting for a certain machine, consider visiting in the afternoon. Times for specific promotions vary, and guests should sign up for emails through the Lucky North Club to learn more about them.
Stay safe while you play. The Catawba Two Kings Casino is practicing safety procedures and protocols to best protect guests and employees from COVID-19. All employees are required to wear a mask, and guests are encouraged to wear one as well. Disposable masks are available for guests when they enter the casino. “We have worked with Cintas to provide proper cleaning materials to sanitize the facility,” Mike Ulizio explains.
The future is bright for Catawba Two Kings Casino. Even in just the first weeks of its opening, the Catawba Two Kings Casino is transforming the community around it for the better and is evolving into a major entertainment attraction. The city of Kings Mountain and the Catawba Nation have seen positive changes in their businesses, employment rates, and tourism.
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WWII veteran George Melton, center, was honored at a recent meeting of Fairview Masonic Lodge No. 339. Pictured, front row, L – R: Rocky Smith, Eric Yarbro, Jim Medlin, George Melton, Larry Stone, James Dellinger, and Johnnie Hutchins. Second row, L-R: Daniel Wooten, Eddie Bridges, Johnnie Hardin, Raymond Treadway, Max Brooks, Rodney Paulson, Tony Wells, and Rick Moore. Third row, L-R: Darvin Chastain, Tam Wright, Jeff Ward, John Murphey, Ronnie James, and Aubrey Livsie. See more photos on page 2A of this week's KM Herald (September 1, 2021)

Fairview Masonic Lodge events

By Jim Medlin

On August 9, the Kings Mountain Vietnam Veterans retired an old flag and dedicated a new flag for Fairview Masonic Lodge No. 339. Rodney Paulson, Abraham Ruff, Ernie Howell, Carl Marrow and Jim Medlin participated in retiring the old flying flag. That flag along with one other old flag will be properly, and in flag decorum and protocol, burned later.
After the old flag was taken from the base of the flagpole, folded one last time, a new flag was dedicated and raised accordingly with honor and tradition. There were 28 people present reviewing the ceremony of Retirement and Dedication.
Later that evening, George Melton (Past Master of the Lodge) was honored for his service during World War II. George was presented a Certificate of Honor and a North Carolina flag, certified by the Speaker of the North Carolina House of Representatives that said flag flew over the State Capital building. 
It is proper to note, that George Melton, along with other Kings Mountain citizens were a part of the “Greatest Generation.” As Tom Brokaw so eloquently stated, “At a time in their lives when their days and nights should have  been  filled
with innocent adventure, love, and the lessons of the workaday world, they were fighting in the most primitive conditions possible across the bloodied landscape of France, Belgium, Italy, Austria, and the coral islands of the Pacific. They answered the call to save the world from the two most powerful and ruthless military machines ever assembled, instruments of conquest in the hands of fascist maniacs. They faced great odds and a late start, but they did not protest. They won the war....”  There were 43 family members and friends present to witness George's heartfelt recognition for his duty, honor, and country.

COVID-19  and City Hall

COVID-19 is a highly contagious, respiratory virus with symptoms ranging from mild to severe. In the worst cases, people have died. So, it’s important that you and your family do your part by following the guidance of federal, state, and local officials as it pertains to social distancing, following safer-at-home orders, and hand washing.
City of Kings Mountain continues to monitor and evaluate all policies and procedures daily. The safety and health of our employees and the public is our top priority as we strive to ensure the continuous delivery of services to our community. The city staff are working diligently to supply the needs of our citizens while minimizing their exposure.
If you have flu like symptoms, are quarantined, or under self-quarantine, and need emergency services, please let the dispatcher know when you call 911. Sharing this information with 911 dispatchers will help our police, fire, and first responders take the necessary precautions to avoid any spread of COVID-19.
Help our staff minimize face to face contact by the following:
• Use our website and online resources. Call our main line if you need any assistance or have questions. (704)-734-0333
• Contact us via email. We are utilizing email as much as possible. Department emails and phone numbers are on our website.
• Pay your utilities via one of the options listed below. The city has multiple options for paying your utility bills:
ONLINE:  https://www.cityofkm.com/330/Online-Bill-Pay
DRIVE-THRU WINDOW at City Hall
DROP-BOX at City Hall (Drop box is checked daily)
MAIL your payment to us at: PO Box 429 Kings Mountain NC 28086.
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City closures and other important info

City offices will be closed on Monday, September 6 in Observance of Labor Day holiday and garbage collection will be on a one-day delay. If you have questions, please call Public Works at 704-734-0735.
Loose leaf pickup will begin October 18th. Beginning on this date you may place your leaves loose at the edge of the road, behind the curb, for collection by our vacuum truck. Until this date, please remember that all leaves and grass clippings should be bagged for collection.
Please remember to place all brush and limbs, as well as leaves/ grass clippings behind the curb and out of the street to prevent rainwater from washing them into storm drains and ditches
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American Legion Veteran’s breakfast this Saturday

By Loretta Cozart

American Legion Post 155 announces its monthly Veteran’s Breakfast is this Saturday morning, September 4, from 9 am to 11 am at the Otis D. Green Post home on East Gold Street.
All veterans are invited to this free breakfast the first Saturday of each month. Guests can dine-in or carry-out their meal. Selections include eggs, bacon, liver mush, gravy, grits, biscuits, toast, coffee, and juice.
The gathering is an opportunity for the community to support local veterans by joining them for a meal and visiting with them in fellowship. Non-veterans are asked to make a small donation to offset the cost of the meal, enabling American Legion Post to continue the program on a monthly basis.

KM Merchants prepare for
continuing Streetscape project

By Loretta Cozart

When the Street-scape construction project get’s the go-ahead from NCDOT, accessing businesses along Battleground Avenue and Mountain Street may become difficult, if not impossible from the street front for periods of time due to construction.
City of Kings Mountain’s Mainstreet Program urged owners to provide access to their buildings and businesses from the back, because many have access from the Cherokee Street parking lot.
Since the downtown was established, the area behind downtown has offered parking for those wishing to shop in that area. Before cars, the space was known as the hitching yard.
Many building owners have embraced the idea and have gone beyond, providing access, with some   of   them  making  their rear entrances downright attractive. Hopefully, shoppers will agree and continue to support these merchants during the upcoming construction.
If you have not seen what merchants have done to offer access from the parking area, here are a few examples.
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TIM MOORE

NC Senate passes House Bill 805 to prevent rioting and disorder

In a 25-19 vote on August 25, the North Carolina Senate passed House Bill 805, a bill sponsored by House Speaker Tim Moore to prevent rioting and civil disorder.
The bill is described as an act to increase the penalties for rioting or inciting rioting that results in damage to property, serious bodily injury, or death and assaulting emergency personnel during a riot or state of emergency; to allow recovery of treble damages for property damage or personal injury caused by rioting or looting; and to require pretrial release conditions for rioting and looting offenses to be determined by a judge.
On May 10, Representative Loftin proposed Amendment A1 for page 2, line 6, rewriting that line to read, “Mere presence alone without an overt act is not sufficient to sustain a conviction pursuant to this section."
House Speaker Tim Moore said, "I saw firsthand the violence and destruction caused by rioters right here in downtown Raleigh last year. What this bill does is enforce harsher penalties for the perpetrators of violence and looting, while preserving every North Carolinian's right to protest peacefully."
He continued, "Our rights to free speech and assembly are precious and must be preserved, but never at the expense of harm to others. House Bill 805 simply ensures the safety of our citizens while upholding their rights to free speech and assembly."
The bill will return to the House for concurrence.
Chrisjolly
CHRIS JOLLY

Sellers Market driving
KM home prices up, up, up

By Loretta Cozart

The median sales price for single-family homes in Kings Mountain has risen an astonishing 40.8% in the last 12 months. With the opening of the casino, many speculate the reason for the increase in home costs happened because of the announcement. Chris Jolly, licensed NC Realtor® and owner of Jolly Realty Group, suggests the reason has less to do with the casino and more to do with a lack of inventory.
Looking at MLS listings for July 2018, Kings Mountain had 194 properties available for purchase. In July 2019, there were only 161 properties listed. By 2020, 151 were offered, and as of August 15, there are just 140 residential listings. Of those 140 properties, only 28 aren’t already under contract.** If you were to need a house now in Kings Mountain, you would have less than 30 houses from which to choose. Jolly explains, “We have a very hot seller’s market right now with historically low interest rates creating very strong and competitive buyer activity.”
A lot of that activity comes from homeowners who look to take advantage of the increase in positive equity from the sale of their home and use that to upgrade their homes with little, or in some cases no increase, in their monthly payment due to the lower cost of lending.
A supply and demand issue are created when sellers are hesitant to list their home for sale for fear of selling their house before they have found the home that suits their needs. These shoppers are checking for new listings daily, and when the right one comes on the market, they make an offer with the intention of selling their current residence to qualify for a new mortgage.
When a buyer offers this way, most feel the need to make their offers as strong as possible in hopes that the seller chooses them. You see increases in purchase price, due diligence fees, etc.  “When this happens for an extended period, real estate agents can see the trends, we have sold/closed comparable properties and value listings with the most up to date information available, which reflects the current trends of the market,” Jolly shared.
“While low inventory supply has affected many markets across the country, there are a couple different factors that I believe are driving people to Kings Mountain, specifically.”
“Affordability is becoming a major concern for a lot of cities and counties in our area.  Even with the recent increase in values, Kings Mountain is still an affordable place to live.  We are seeing situations where homeowners are frustrated with congestion from the high rate of development in cities like Charlotte and Belmont. A lot of those people find Kings Mountain   and   realize  its
affordable, with great access to I-85 and Highway 74,” said Jolly.
“Another large factor into the rise of interest in Kings Mountain is due to the Covid-19 pandemic. With an incredible amount of people now working remotely, it’s easier
than ever for families to move a little further away from their physical office, and we are seeing a lot of people from Charlotte, who now work from home, looking for homes in our area.  As lockdowns and mandates started happening last year, I think it influenced people to seek out less congested areas to live,” he said.
“Lastly, I believe this city is finally seeing the fruits of its labor. Major downtown revitalization continues, and our Special Events department has done an incredible job getting Kings Mountain ‘on the map’, through the many events, concerts, and Christmas festivities it’s hosted over the last few years. We are seeing more people come into Kings Mountain than ever before.”
Jolly concludes, “Once they see how many boxes the city checks for them, it’s just really hard to say no to Kings Mountain right now.”
Important note to readers - Jolly states that each individual property is unique, and that values will vary with each property. Please contact a local, licensed NC Realtor® for a proper and thorough home valuation.
**Data compiled from CanopyMLS©. Information accurate as of August 15, 2021.

Back-to-School 
Prayer Rally

A Back-to-School Prayer Rally will be hosted by East Gold Street Wesleyan Church and sponsored by the Kings Mountain Ministerial Association on Sunday, August 29, at 6 pm.
The church is located at 701 East Gold St., Kings Mtn.

Eastside Baptist Blood Drive
September 1

Eastside Baptist Church will hold a blood drive on September 1, from 10:00 AM – 04:00 PM. The church is located at 308 York Rd , Kings Mountain, NC 28086.
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FLOYD ROSEBERRY

Grover man
arrested in
Washington, DC

By Loretta Cozart

According to a Capitol Police press release Friday, at approximately 9:15 a.m.  Thursday morning, a man in a black pick-up truck drove onto the sidewalk in front of the Library of Congress, near First Street, S.E., and Independence Avenue.
The driver of the truck, later identified as 49-year-old Floyd Ray Roseberry of Grover, NC, told the officer on the scene he had a bomb. The officer noticed what appeared to be a detonator in the man’s hand.
Officers immediately evacuated nearby buildings, including the Library of Congress Buildings and the Cannon Office Building.
The U.S. House and U.S. Senate were on recess, but some people were still working in the buildings.
Roseberry was communicating by holding up hand-written signs through the front, driver-side window.
Officers delivered him a phone in hopes of trying to continue the dialogue.
Then the suspect got out of the car on his own and US Capitol Police officers safely took him into custody.
The United States Capitol Police is working in conjunction with the FBI Washington Field Office to investigate Roseberry’s background and the motive.
Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office shared their role in the investigation. “On Thursday morning at approximately 11 a.m., Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office received information from the FBI office in Charlotte, regarding an on-going investigation in Washington, DC that possibly had ties to Cleveland
County,” a press release on Friday shared.
“The person of interest was identified as Floyd Ray Roseberry by the US Capitol Police and is a resident of our county. The sheriff’s office, acting in partnership with FBI Charlotte, NC SBI, and several other agencies, secured and acquired legal documentation for a residence in the southern part of Cleveland County,” the press release said.
   On Friday, a Criminal Complaint was filed in Washington, DC Federal Court, charging Roseberry with threatening to use a weapon of mass destruction and threatening to use an explosive device.
   The complaint states, “At approximately 9:45 a.m. on August 19, the FBI responded to assist U.S. Capitol Police with a bomb threat made by an individual later identified as Floyd Roseberry, a resident of Grover, North Carolina. Roseberry had reportedly claimed to have a bomb and a detonator in his possession.”
   The complaint also states, that during these events on August 19, which garnered widespread media attention, a local law enforcement official in Cleveland County, North Carolina contacted the FBI to report that the official recognized Roseberry as the subject of a report received the previous day, on August 18, 2021, by a person (W-1) related to Roseberry. W-1 had reported their concern that Roseberry had recently expressed anti-government views and an intent to travel to Virginia or Washington, D.C. to conduct acts of violence. W-1 also reported that Roseberry had stated that he “ordered a trench coat to protect him from Taser and pepper ball guns and he would just tip his cowboy hat at the police”.
   “At approximately 2:15 pm, after a four-and-a-half-hour standoff, Roseberry was taken into custody by United States Capitol Police. In a post-arrest interview, Roseberry confirmed his identity,” the Criminal Complaint stated. He was taken into custody without incident, according to Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger.
   Magistrate Judge Zia Faruqui ordered a medical evaluation to determine whether Roseberry is competent before moving forward. The evaluation is expected to be completed on Monday or Tuesday and Roseberry will remain in federal custody. He is expected back in court on Wednesday, August 25 at 4:00 p.m.
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Masks required in schools, with options

Due to the increase in COVID-related illnesses throughout Cleveland County, the Board of Education voted to require face coverings/masks for all students, staff and building occupants while inside a school building when occupied by students during the instructional day.
Cleveland County Schools has developed a standardized form to provide consent for or on behalf of a student enrolled in our district to exempt a student from the local face-covering requirement. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have provided guidance stating that the wearing of face coverings slows the spread of COVID-19 and encourages all students and school staff to wear face coverings. Failure to wear a face-covering may subject a student or staff member to an increased risk of contracting COVID-19 and spreading COVID-19 to others.
By completing this form, parents and guardians are authorizing your student to not wear a face-covering while at school. A separate form must be completed for each child.
The form can be found online at https://clevelandcountyschools.formstack.com/forms/face_covering_exemption_form

Distinguished Women’s Banquet rescheduled

The Commission for Women is postponing the Distinguished Women’s Banquet scheduled for public health reasons. The event had been scheduled for Thursday, Aug 26 at LeGrand Center at 6:30 pm. The new date will be Thursday, November 4 at 6:30 pm at the LeGrand Center.
All August tickets will be honored at the new banquet date.
If some would rather have refunds or to purchase new tickets ($40), they need to contact Betsy Wells at 704-477-7024 or betsywells@yahoo.com
Commission members are looking forward to honoring on November 4th, these 2021 Distinguished Women:
• Carol Ann Hoard
• Lisa Proctor
•Terricia Wingo
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Participating in Terra Mia Ristorante’s ribbon cutting were Police Chief Proctor, City Manager Marilyn Sellers, Councilman Keith Miller, Mayor Scott Neisler, Owner Tony Coppola, and others from Terra Mia Ristorante. Photo by Christy Adkins

Terra Mia Ristorante
holds ribbon cutting

By Loretta Cozart

Terra Mia Ristorante held a ribbon cutting on Friday, August 20 to celebrate its one-year anniversary in downtown Kings Mountain at 238 Cherokee Street.
On hand for the ribbon cutting were Mayor Scott Neisler, Councilman Keith Miller, and representatives from City of Kings Mountain and Terra Mia Ristorante owner and staff.
Owner Tony Coppola is from Monte di Procida, which means Mountain overlooking island of Procida, and is close to Napoli (Naples Italy). He has been living in the US and working in the restaurant industry for 25 years. “But I feel like it’s my first day,” he said.
He was taught to cook by his Mama and his Nonna (grandma). Tony is a big soccer fan and has been cooking his entire life. He chose Kings Mountain because, “I love the cozy little village that brings me back to my little Italian Village.”
Tony welcomes you to come by Terra Mia Ristorante for a slice of authentic Italian cuisine in downtown Kings Mountain.
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NC BeachBlast Festival starts Friday

Water! Sun! Music! Fun! The Carolina Beach Music Award winning NC BeachBlast Festival is back!
The City of Kings Mountain will bring the Beach to downtown as the NC BeachBlast Festival, presented by Carolina Power Partners, comes back to Patriots Park, Friday, August 20 and Saturday, August 21.
The festival will kick off Friday, August 20 at 6:00 pm with DJ Eric Bowman followed by the Swingin’ Medallions taking the stage at 7:00 pm.
Beginning at 10:00 am August 21st, beach music fans can enjoy a full day of food, music, and fun with DJ Johnny B and four of the hottest bands in the South; The Embers featuring Craig Woolard, The Tonez, Band of Oz, and Blackwater Rhythm and Blues Band.
Come Hungry! Vendors will be on hand offering great food. Shop till you drop at the Boardwalk Vendor Market with over 50 vendors onsite.
Did we say fun? Patriots Park will be filled with many activities for the whole family. Inflatables and games, the Rotary Splash Pad, continuous rounds of Water Wars, Watermelon Eatin’, Hula Hoop contests, Tiny Tots and Teenie Bikini contest, Big Beach Ball Drop, and much more!
What would the beach be without a pavilion? Look for some awesome amusement rides in the park this year. Can you say Ferris Wheel?
Patriots Park is located at 220 South Railroad Avenue, Kings Mountain.
For more information visit www.kingsmountainevents.com/nc-beachblast-festival or call 704-730-2101.

See BeachBlast event
timeline on page 3A in this week's issue of KM Herald (August 18, 2021)
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Free Family Fun at 
NC BeachBlast Festival

Inflatables! Games! Water Wars! A Ferris Wheel! The NC BeachBlast Festival presented by Carolina Power Partners brings FREE family fun to downtown Kings Mountain, Saturday, August 21.
Inflatables, games, rides, and many other attractions will fill Patriots Park. For the first time in the history of the festival, free Ferris wheel rides will be offered as well.
Activities at the Patriots Park Gazebo will begin at 10:30 am. Dance Magic, Dance Reflections, Fitness Troopers and Step-N-Out Productions will perform.
Sigmon Theatrical will bring super cool fish Gil and Fin and Ollie the Octopus to the festival. Festival goers may see some mermaids as well. What would a festival be without contests? Registration for the Tiny Tots & Teenie Bikini, Watermelon, and Hula Hoop contests will begin promptly at 10:00 am.
Ross the Balloon Guy will be on hand creating fabulous balloon art. Free face painting and much more will make this a festival no one will forget.
The NC BeachBlast Festival will open for a full day of fun Saturday, August 21, at 10:00 am.
For more information on the NC BeachBlast Festival, contact the City of Kings Mountain’s Special Events Department at 704-730-2101, or visit their website at www.KingsMountainEvents.Com/nc-beachblast-festival. You may also visit their Facebook page at @cityofkmspecialevents.
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Heavy traffic heading to downtown KM

Shuttle service
offered for
BeachBlast
festival
attendees


Heavy traffic is expected in downtown Kings Mountain, August 21 as The City of Kings Mountain hosts the NC BeachBlast Festival Presented by Carolina Power Partners.
   Roads impacted during the events will be South Railroad Avenue and West Gold Street. As a result, the city is offering shuttle pick-up and drop-off at the following locations:
• First Baptist Church located at 605 West King Street, Kings Mountain
• Patrick Senior Center located at 909 East Kings Street, Kings Mountain
• Cherokee Street Parking-located at South Cherokee Street
• Parkdale Mill-500 South Railroad Avenue
Shuttle service will begin August 21 at 9:30am and end at 10:30pm.
The city urges patrons to use the shuttle services as parking will be scarce in the downtown.
Motorists are urged to use extreme caution when traveling through downtown Kings Mountain due to the increase in motor vehicles and pedestrians. Please plan to travel different roads if you are impacted by road closures.
For more information on the NC BeachBlast Festival, contact the City of Kings Mountain’s Special Events Department at 704-730-2101, or visit their website at www.KingsMountainEvents.Com/nc-beachblast-festival. You may also visit their Facebook page at @cityofkmspecialevents.
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Swingin’ Medallions, from Greenwood, SC, perform at Liberty Falls Amphitheater Friday evening. Photos provided by City of Kings Mountain

Swingin’ Medallions kicks-off the NC BeachBlast Festival

Band will perform Friday, August 20
at Liberty Falls
Amphitheatre 


The City of Kings Mountain welcomes legendary group, Swingin’ Medallions to kick-off the NC BeachBlast Festival presented by Carolina Power Partners, Friday, August 20.
Based in Greenwood South Carolina, Swingin’ Medallions was founded in 1962. In 1966, the group hit #17 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts with “Double Shot (Of My Baby’s Love)”.
“This is the second visit to Kings Mountain for Swingin’ Medallions,” states drummer Robby Cox. “We can’t wait to get back to Kings Mountain. The crowd is always ready to have a great time.”
The kick-off party begins at 6:00 pm with Carolina Beach Music Award winning DJ Eric Bowman followed by Swingin’ Medallions at 7:00 pm.
Many of your favorite food vendors will be on hand serving kettle corn, seafood, burgers and more.
The full day festival begins Saturday, August 21, at 10:00 am.
For more information on the NC BeachBlast Festival, contact the City of Kings Mountain’s Special Events Department at 704-730-2101, or visit their website at www.KingsMountainEvents.Com/nc-beachblast-festival. You may also visit their Facebook page at @cityofkmspecialevents. 
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NC BEACHBLAST EVENT TIMELINE
The Gazebo
Saturday – August 21, 2021

10:00 am    Festival Opens
    • Performance by Dance Magic
    • Tiny Tots & Teenie Bikini Registration
         Registration Opens at 10:00am,
       registration closes at 11:30am
    • Fun Zone

10:30 am    Performance by Dance Reflections
11:00 am    Mermaid Encounter by Sigmon Theatrical
11:30 am    Performance by Fitness Troopers
12:00 pm    Performance by Dance Magic
12:30 pm    Tiny Tots & Teenie Bikini Contest
1:00 pm    Tiny Tots & Teenie Bikini Contest
1:30 pm    Mermaid Encounter by Sigmon Theatrical
2:00 pm     Beach Ball Drop
2:30 pm    Watermelon Eating Contest  
3:00 pm    Performance by Dance Reflections
3:30 pm    Mermaid Encounter by Sigmon Theatrical
4:00 pm    Performance by Fitness Troopers
4:30 pm     Hula Hoop Contest
5:00 pm    Performance by Dance Magic
5:30 pm     Performance by Step N Out
6:00 pm    Mermaid Encounter by Sigmon Theatrical
6:30 pm    Performance by Dance Reflections
7:00 pm    Performance by Fitness Troopers
7:30 pm    Performance by Dance Magic
8:00 pm    Mermaid Encounter by Sigmon Theatrical
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Kindergarten just got way cooler
Cleveland Co. Schools offer online enrollment

Cleveland County Schools announced their new online enrollment system April 9. Using their online enrollment system, you can upload documents such as proof of residency, birth certificates, and immunization records.
Visit https://www.clevelandcountyschools.org/ and click on the banner that reads, “Kindergarten Just Got Way Cooler. On that page, you can click directly on the name of the school your child will attend and register online.
There are also additional links sharing ways to prepare your child for kindergarten.
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Students head back to the classroom Monday, August 23

By Loretta Cozart

Cleveland County students begin the 2021-2022 school year on Monday, August 23. While the School Board has opted to let parents determine if students will wear masks at school, all students and adults must wear a mask on school buses.
According to Kings Mountain High Schools website, ALL students will eat breakfast and lunch for free during the 2021-2022 school year. If you want additional services, like free internet, additional P-EBT funds, cost waived for ACT, SAT, AP, and other tests, or to have college application fees waived, parents must apply at https://www.lunchapplication.com/.
KMHS offered laptop pick-up before school starts this year in the media center. They encourage all rising 9th-grade students to come before school starts to get their new Chromebook and laptop case.
Distribution dates were August 3, 4, and 5. If you missed the pickup dates, contact the school.
A signed laptop user agreement is required. Those forms may be picked up in the main office or downloaded from https://drive.google.com/.../1mdz_LpJ_F.../view There is an annual technology fee of $20 be paid at the time of pickup.
KMHS Orientation started yesterday for 9th graders. Due to mass gathering restrictions currently in place, Cleveland County Schools request only one parent per child attend the session. Orientation for 10th-grade is tonight, August 18, from 5:00 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. Tomorrow, 11th and 12th-grade Orientation will be August 18th from 2:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.
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Steffes, LLC expanding to Cleveland Co.

Steffes, LLC of Dickinson, North Dakota, a leader in the development and production of innovative energy technology and advanced manufacturing has announced their decision to expand into the southeast through the acquisition of a manufacturing facility in the town of Shelby, North Carolina.
This investment of $20.9 million in Cleveland County will create 130 new, full-time jobs over the next five years. Start of production is expected to begin in late 2021 with plans be fully operational in the first quarter of 2023. Steffes plans to provide advanced comprehensive metal fabrication services to support production of Steffes OEM products and customer production in the region.
 “This expansion is the realization of the company’s strategic vision,” said Todd Mayer, Co-President of Steffes. “The combination of customers and friends in this area combined with the workforce potential and community support made Shelby the best fit for us. We are excited to become part of the  community and support innovation in the region.”
Steffes is a privately held, diversified original equipment and contract manufacturer headquartered in Dickinson, North Dakota with additional manufacturing and customer support facilities in Grand Forks, North Dakota, Midland, Texas; Casper, Wyoming; and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Steffes specializes in:
• the design, manufacturing and service of energy technology products that support the extraction and processing and gas management of oil & gas.
• innovative product development and manufacturing of electric thermal storage and load management control technologies to meet our country’s adoption of sustainable electricity distribution and storage to meet decarbonization goals.
• steel fabrication, electrical services and engineering support for companies requiring prototype and manufacturing partners to support their business success.
   Because Steffes is locating in Cleveland County, classified by the state’s economic tier system as Tier 1, the company’s JDIG agreement does not require a contribution into the state’s Industrial Development Fund – Utility Account.
   “We are excited to welcome Steffes to North Carolina,” said Governor Cooper. “We know that when companies are ready to expand, they choose our state because of our ready workforce, exceptional quality of life and robust infrastructure.”
   “This is a great announcement for the entire state,” said N.C. Speaker of the House Tim Moore. “It takes diligent local and state leaders to recruit these types of investments to North Carolina and we’re eager to see to these investments come to reality in Shelby.”
   “Cleveland County is thrilled to have another manufacturer join our community,” said N.C. Senator Ted Alexander. “The people of Cleveland County are ready to accept these new opportunities and to support the company’s transition to our region. These are the types of jobs that are so necessary for a diverse economy, and I am delighted that Steffes has chosen to come to our region. They will be outstanding corporate citizens. Thanks to all those who worked so hard to recruit this great business.”
     In addition to the N.C. Department of Commerce and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, other key partners in the project include the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Community College System, Cleveland Community College, Cleveland County, City of Shelby, Duke Energy and Cleveland County Economic Development Partnership.
 

Back-to-School 
Prayer Rally

A Back-to-School Prayer Rally will be hosted by East Gold Street Wesleyan Church and sponsored by the Kings Mountain Ministerial Association on Sunday, August 29, at 6 pm.
Finger food fellowship will be held in the Family Life Center after the service. Please have your contribution to the fellowship placed in the Family Life Center by 5:45 p.m.
The church is located at 701 East Gold St., Kings Mtn.
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Blessed Boutique and Consignment is located at 210 East King Street.

Blessed Boutique and Consignment celebrates 2-month anniversary

By Loretta Cozart

On August 5, Blessed Boutique and Consignment celebrated it’s second month anniversary at their new location at 210 East Kings Street in Kings Mountain. Destiny Lindsay operated her business from home on Walker Street for nearly two years before making the leap to lease a storefront. “I told my husband we just didn’t have any more room at home and I needed to rent space. Within 3-days, this property became available,” she said.
Downstairs, she uses two rooms for her own boutique, offering clothes, shoes, and accessories. Upstairs, she rents space and currently has 20 vendors, from consultants like Paparazzi Jewelry to Pillow Street. “We also have vendors who make their own crafts, like wreaths and tumblers. There’s all sorts of stuff,” Destiny said. “We rent space by the month and do not take a percentage of sales.” That is a good option for vendors who want
to know their fixed costs. “We’re always looking for new vendors,” she added.
The shop carries size small to 3x, so there is something there for everyone. Other items include children’s clothes, bows, jewelry, paintings, tumblers, dreamcatchers, shoes, birdhouses, wallets, accessories, pillows, candles, woodcrafts, and wall-art weaving. New items are added daily.
The shop is open Monday, Thursday, and Friday from 10 am – 6 pm, Wednesday 10 am – 5 pm, and Saturday 10 am – 4 pm. They are closed on Tuesday and Sunday.
Destiny has lived in Kings Mountain since 2011 and graduated Kings Mountain High School in 2015. She and her husband have three children: Cooper, 7, Aiden 5, and Rosie 6 months.
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Chief Proctor poses with attendees of NNO at the Safe Kids Display showing how warm a car can become on warm days. See more photos on page 5A of this week's KM Herald (August 11, 2021) Photo by Angela Padgett

National Night Out
draws huge crowd

By Loretta Cozart

On August 3, Kings Mountain celebrated National Night Out in a big way at Patriots Park. Kids and parents turned out to celebrate, meeting officers, deputies, and first responders, along with others from Kings Mountain who support safe communities.
Police Chief Lisa Proctor, along with other local dignitaries welcomed those in attendance and shared the importance of the night.
National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community. Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.
   Millions of neighbors take part in National Night Out across thousands of communities from all fifty states, U.S. territories and military bases worldwide on the first Tuesday in August.
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Verizon Tower located at 500 S. Railroad Avenue.

New cell tower
to provide better
phone coverage

A few weeks ago, Verizon began installation of a new cell tower to help with poor phone coverage in town. Citizens seemed surprised at the news, but the topic was discussed in January at a Public Hearing of the Kings Mountain Board of Adjustments on January 19.
According to now retired David W. Owens of the UNC School of Government, “Quasi-judicial decisions involve the application of zoning policies already established in the ordinance to individual situations--for example, variances, special- and conditional-use permits (even if issued by the governing board), appeals, and interpretations. Quasi-judicial decisions involve two key elements: the finding of facts regarding the specific proposal and the exercise of some discretion in applying predetermined policies to the situation.”
Owens goes on to share, “Both (legislative and Quasi-judicial) hearings are open to the public and are intended to solicit comments, but they have different standards for the notice required prior to the hearing, as well as for who can speak, what issues are appropriately raised, the formality with which the hearing must be conducted, and the records that must be maintained.”
The cell tower is located at 500 S. Railroad Avenue. Joel K. Harris of Baker Donelson applied for a conditional use permit for  Verizon Wireless cell phone tower requesting a variance of setback from 131.25 feet to 106.25 feet. To mitigate concerns about the tower not meeting the 75% of tower height setback, the tower has a 25-feet engineered fall-zone radius so that in the event of failure, it would fall entirely within the parent parcels.
Twenty-four companies and individuals were notified of the conditional use permit request in a letter mailed on January 6. Notices went to the applicant, the owners of the affected property, the owners of abutting properties, and anyone else required to receive notice under the ordinance.

Fatal crash on Bethlehem Road

By Loretta Cozart

At approximately 1 am on August 3, a car driving south on Bethlehem Road in Kings Mountain ran off the road, hitting a culvert and then a telephone pole before coming to a stop. Three people were ejected from the vehicle.
Jason Matthew Ingle, 19, of Grover was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver, Garrett Clay Barber, was airlifted to Atrium Health Main in Charlotte. The condition of the other passengers is not known.
North Carolina Highway Patrol’s Reconstruction Unit is determining the events of the accident. Once complete, they will meet with the District Attorney to determine if charges will be filed.

City Council approves rezoning
of Neisler Brothers property

By Loretta Cozart

During the July 27 City Council meeting, Mayor Neisler recused himself for an item on the agenda, because it included property owned by his family. Mayor Pro-Tempore Keith Miller took over the meeting. Up for discussion was to consider a rezoning application from Stella N. Putnam (Owner Neisler Brothers Inc.) to rezone property fronting South Battleground Avenue and consisting of approximately 8.93 acres being further known as Parcel No. 12841 from Residential R-10 to Light Industrial (LI) – Case No. Z-18-5-21.
During the Public Meeting, neighbor Bobby Gaddy addressed city council with questions regarding the uses allowed for the property. He had heard the property was going to be used as a bar. Planning Director Stuart Gilbert assured Mr. Gaddy that bars were not allowed under Light Industrial zoning.
In the Regular Meeting, Councilman David Allen made the motion to adopt a Consistency Statement in  Favor of the request from Stella N. Putnam (Owner Neisler Brothers Inc.) to rezone property fronting South Battleground Avenue and consisting of approximately 8.93 acres being further known as Parcel No. 12841 from Residential R-10 to Light Industrial (LI). The vote was unanimous.
Councilman Jay Rhodes made the motion to Adopt an Ordinance amending the zoning map of the City of Kings Mountain, NC to rezone property fronting South Battleground Avenue and consisting of approximately 8.93 acres being further known as Parcel No. 12841 from Residential R-10 to Light Industrial (LI). The vote was also unanimous.
   Mayor Neisler returned to the meeting after that item.
   Councilman Allen asked to remove Item E from the Public Hearing for discussion which was granted. The item was to adopt a Resolution to establish the City of Kings Mountain 2020 Census Redistricting Committee and appoint the following members: Mickey Corry, City Attorney, Councilmember Annie Thombs, Stuart Gilbert, Planning Director, Karen Tucker, City Clerk, Renee Bost and Mary Jane Garver. During the Regular meeting Councilman Allen agreed with the resolution but wanted to add Councilman Miller’s name to the list. The board approved and the vote was unanimous.
   Two items scheduled for the Regular Meeting were tabled. The first, Item 15, was tabled until September 28 at the request of Michael Parker’s attorney. Item 17 was tabled until August 31 at the request of Earthfall Productions.
   Included in the Consent Agenda were several items approved by city council including a budget amendment in the amount of $10,516 to budget funds for a Library grant awarded in July 2021. The grant does not require a match, so no City resources are required. The grant will be used primarily to purchase hot spots and Chromebooks.
   City Council accepted a Certificate of Sufficiency and adopted a Resolution fixing the date of a Public Hearing for Tuesday, August 31, at 6 p.m. to consider a Voluntary Contiguous Annexation Petition from Kenneth F. Davis and Amy C. Davis, for property located on or about 155 Patterson Road, being further identified as Parcel No. 12139, Tax Map 4-59, Block 1, Lot 11U, and consisting of approximately 29.88 acres – Case No. A-2021-5-21.
   Also scheduled was a Public Hearing for Tuesday, August 31, at 6 p.m. to consider an application from Prestige Corporate Development, LLC (Brinkley Properties, LLC, Owner) to rezone property located at 1017 Phifer Road, 1025 Phifer Road, and 1027 Phifer Road, consisting of 52.95 acres being further known as Parcels 11916, 57168, 57167, 11919, 11920 and 11921 from then Residential R-10, now Suburban Residential (SR) to Semi Urban Residential (SU).
   City Council also adopted a Resolution amending the Gaston, Cleveland, Lincoln Hazard Mitigation Plan to include various dams in Cleveland County and their relationship to the City of Kings Mountain. This action will bring the plan into compliance with hazard mitigation efforts associated with these dams and allow the city to move forward with efforts for making application for funding through the High Hazard Rehabilitation Program.
   City Council authorized Mayor Neisler to execute a Joint Cooperation Agreement for Home Investment Partnership Act with Foothills NC Home Consortium (formerly Isothermal Planning & Development).
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Main Street Coordinator Christy Adkins took this photo of the train wreck as KM Police Department and KM Fire Department respond to the scene. See more photos on page 4A.

Truck demolished by train at Gold Street crossing Friday

By Loretta Cozart

On Friday, July 30, at 11:06 am, a Piedmont, LLC landscaping truck hauling equipment on a trailer behind, got caught on a cement pole at the Gold Street railroad crossing in Kings Mountain. According to witnesses, two men in the truck got out to see what got caught just as the crossing arms dropped and the signal indicated an approaching train.
The men moved away from the truck and witnesses in downtown watched as the Norfolk Southern cargo train traveling from South to North sounded its horn loudly before impacting and demolishing the truck. Along with the truck, the crossing arm and signal were pulled from the ground. Nobody was hurt in the accident.
The driver of the truck, Joseph David Bridges of Shelby, works for Piedmont, LLC, a landscaping company based in Mooresville, NC
Regarding the accident, KMPD Police Chief Lisa Proctor said, “When crossing over any crossing one must make sure that they do so in a safe manner and when you are pulling a trailer you have to allow yourself more room to make the turn based on the length of the trailer.”
She went on to day, “There are several other routes one could use in town instead of this location when you are pulling a trailer of any size. It's always best to err on the side of caution and go the extra block or two, instead of trying to cross there with a trailer.”
Preston Brown captured the impact on video, as did Grace Graham who was on S. Railroad Avenue near the intersection. Bystanders took photos of the scene and shared them with the Herald.
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Food vendors need to register with City of Kings Mountain Special Events to participate in the NC BeachBlast Festival August 21. Photos by City of Kings Mountain

Vendor registrations open
for NC BeachBlast Festival

Full-day Festival set for August 21st

Vendor registration has officially opened for the NC BeachBlast Festival, the City of Kings Mountain’s award winning full-day Carolina Beach Music Festival scheduled for 10:00am-10:00pm, August 21st, 2021.
Vendors, who are interested, are encouraged to register at www.kingsmountainevents.com/vendor-application.
Registration for Arts/Craft/Information Vendors-$30.00. Registration for Food/Beverage Vendors-$100.00.
Space is limited. To register, vendors must agree to stay for the duration of the event.
Bring your grass table skirts, seashells and sand dollars, vendors are asked to decorate booths to match the beach theme of the event. One lucky vendor will win a Mayor’s Choice prize for best set-up.
For more information on the NC BeachBlast Festival contact the City of Kings Mountain’s Special Events Department at 704-730-2101 or visit their website at www.kingsmountainevents.com/nc-beachblast-festival. You may also visit their Facebook page at @cityofkmspecialevents.

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NC BeachBlast road closure Aug. 19 - 21

The City of Kings Mountain looks forward to this year’s NC BeachBlast Festival located at Patriots Park. A portion of Railroad Avenue and West Gold Street surrounding Patriots Park will be closed beginning at midnight Thursday, August 19th, 2021, and remain closed or barricaded until midnight, Saturday, August 21, 2021. Please use
extreme caution when traveling on Cansler Street due to the increase in motor vehicles and pedestrians. Please plan to travel different roads if you are impacted by this change. Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.
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Tempers flare
regarding downtown Streetscape project at City Council

By Loretta Cozart

Tempers flared during city council as staff, citizens, and city council shared their frustrations over communication related to the downtown Street-scape project.
Early in the meeting, City Manager Marilyn Seller announced an update of Kings Mountain’s Streetscape plan during the city council meeting on July 27. “I'm very excited to give an update on our downtown Streetscape phase two. The streetlight design has been completed, lights and poles have been selected, and
all  the materials have been quoted as of last week. The DOT responded back to our design and calculations last week and have approved with one minor change. So, we are working on that change and that should be approved soon. All the Wi-Fi equipment has been mounted in phase two. The testing is now being done and everything will be completed within the next two weeks. Documents for bidding is being gathered and will be sent out soon. We are still targeting Thanksgiving for completion, weather permitting and we receive all supplies. So, we are hoping for a Thanksgiving and are still on board with that.”
During citizen recognition, developer David Stone requested that the city consider a special committee to improve communication related to Streetscape. “We had an unofficial public meeting on May 10. The most update I’ve had in the last 90-days on the Streetscape is what Marilyn Sellers just shared right there. That’s great news, but the fact is we left the meeting expecting that as soon as you had a detailed plan, more than the detail in the lobby, that you would share it. It hasn’t occurred. We want collaboration and (what we are getting) this doesn’t work for us businesspeople. We’ve asked for more communication on Streetscape and it’s not occurring.”
“Here’s what I’d like to see. I'd like a special committee formed with two people on the council, two property owners, two business owners to oversee Streetscape from here to this completion,” he said.  “And I'm asking instead of an informal meeting with council with the business meeting, that you do a public hearing with the business owners so that everything goes on record, and we have a clear action plan for how you're going to be better transparent, communicate, and partner with the downtown business owners.  it's very clear when we talk off the record things don't get done; there's no follow up. If it takes talking on the record to get the follow up, let's do it. Inaction, that's what breeds distrust,” Stone said.
Later, during the regular meeting, Main Street Coordinator Christy Adkins asked city council to help decide between two logo designs for rebranding downtown. Her committee had a 50/50 split on which logo was better and asked for the council’s input.
Councilman David Allen asked how current business owners responded to the concepts and Adkins replied, “We have not approached a whole lot of the current business owners. We wanted to see what your thoughts were on this before we did that.” Allen said, “I would think that would be a prudent step, since we are looking for buy-in. We are looking for them to support this, so I would think we should take these (concepts) and shop them around and let’s get some feedback from them.”
Councilman Jimmy West said he agreed with Councilman Allen. “I think the business owners feel they have been left in the dark long enough. I think their input would be vital in our deciding. If we decide without their input, that would not be a good move.” Adkins was directed by council to get additional input to come to a consensus and bring it before city council again in the next month or two.
Before concluding the meeting, Councilman West reiterated his concern that downtown property owners and business feel left out on the Streetscape plan. “I think David had a great idea and I would like to see us look into that more closely to determine if we should make a committee like David recommended to keep everybody abreast. I don’t know if we can do that tonight, but I’d hate to see it fall by the wayside like the last meeting did. We need to try to meet these guys in the middle. We made a pact to do that, and we haven’t done that.”
Mayor Neisler reminded the business owners. “The city has a thing called Main Street that is our vehicle for downtown. I know we’ve been talking about these plans since 2018, so there has been plenty of time that input could have been made. We are waiting on DOT approval, which we didn’t anticipate. Otherwise, we’d be further down the road on this. The fact of the matter is there has been input and there is a vehicle we setup called Main Street where input can be done. I’d like to see it be a part of Main Street where you get together.”
West continued, “This meeting in May what we talked about doing, none of that’s been done. And I’m not saying that we dropped the ball, or they dropped the ball. It’s just, the ball has been dropped. (We should) work together as a group to be more informed.”
David Stone spoke saying, “Nobody on the Main Street Advisory Board could give me an update on Streetscape because the last four or five meeting have been cancelled. Mr. Mayor, I appreciate you saying that we have a process, but that process is broken.”
   Councilwoman Annie Thombs spoke saying, “We have a vehicle already in place, but evidently the vehicle is not working to produce the benefits that would be viable for both the property owners and the city. So, I would ask that management would come together and find out what can be done to improve the current vehicle that we have in order to make things functional for all parties concerned. This is the second time we’ve had this request and there must be a solution. You can’t solve a problem on the level of the problem. We need management to come together and fix this, so it doesn’t happen again.”
Councilman Allen reminded city council, “The mayor has the power to create an ad-hoc committee. And really what we are talking about is communication. Perhaps we could put together some communication between us and the group and involve whoever you want to, Sir. Obviously, something is not getting communicated. I put that back on you, Sir.”
  Jay Rhodes commented, “I was involved starting in 2018 and we had citizen’s involvement. We had Mr. Flowe come, and he visited with every business owner. I don’t understand what we are arguing over or complaining about. We are going to put sidewalks and lighting in and change the dynamics some. We put picture out and all we are really doing is making the sidewalks where you don’t hurt someone and get new lighting.”
Keith Miller explained that  the delay in the project was due to a change in leadership at the DOT. “The new people decided that, no, they want to slow down and look at it from their perspective, maybe get engineering studies, new requirements. So, we had to deal with new people now.”  So, there's no point in showing the public where we're at when we don't know where we're at. Because DOT could make us change a lot of things, it’s their street. Then you got the railroad right-of-way. So, my understanding is that you know the lack of information is more a function of the process sort of got hijacked by the new folks at DOT. That burned six to eight weeks and that’s where we’re at.”
Assistant City Manager Nick Hendricks asked to speak. “Gary Spangler, DOT for many, many years retired that staff totally changed. That project went from an easement to a project, which dealt with hydraulics and other processes so there has been a lot of change associated with that. There was an enormous amount of work to go into the hydraulics associated with that process.  It went from check the box on easement to a package this thick, creating all of water flow, water outlets, inflows and outflows. So, it was a huge mark to be able to get it from where we were to today.  So Gary and Richard Flowe both emailed myself Marilyn. Marilyn asked me about an update, and we did get it approved except for one minor drainage issue right here on the railroad. So, the biggest hurdle has been crossed.”
“I think it would behoove me not to say that, and I’m going to say that because I am going to support the City of Kings Mountain employees. City of Kings Mountain’s employees have always done a  tremendous job. They worked their butts off over the last many years in the downtown area. The gazebo, you’ve seen it; you’ve seen what's been done down there. The City of Kings Mountain has done a tremendous value to the downtown area and will continue to, just like we treat the downtown just like we do any other part of town. And that is a value. My office is always open, communication is two-way street process. It takes two people, any time you ask me my work, you can always come and meet me anytime, any day, and talk with me about anything you want to talk about. I work pretty much 12-14 hours a day; enjoy the conversation. Come meet with me, I give you all the updates you want to acknowledge you. The Streetscape, there has been several cancellations. Cancellations are called a product of productivity.When you have nothing to talk about, there's no use to meet. When the DOT hold you up, there’s nothing else to talk about. When you've already made the decision to pick the light you need, there's no other decision to make. It becomes a time waiting game, so there's no use to continue talking about something until there is a decision that must be made. Lastly, nothing that we do will adversely affect any business or the design thereof. We must come back to your door threshold, we must go back to where you were, and we must meet that grade. So, regardless of the design that you may be doing, could be doing, or should be doing, think about it. We're working on public right-of-way. Public right-of-way is a right-of-way that is owned and operated by the City of Kings Mountain citizens. We only can work in that area, so therefore no design or nobody to change, or we can change anything that adversely effects that. Ken Fieger can come visit me anytime he wants, bring your drawings. We’ll talk about it. But we cannot adversely affect what you have. No different than me not going down and speaking to Papa John's, He hasn't come and said, “Well, wait a minute, you’re going to upset my door.” I can’t. The law says I can only work in my area and wherever his door is, I’ve got to meet that threshold. Meaning ground down, ground over, flatten down and meet the hydraulics.
So, as for us holding up the project, that's baloney.
   I'm getting tired of getting beat up on Streetscape. We work our tails off down there, and continue to work our tails off down there, we spent more money down there, and I've always had open door policy to help anybody coming and going.  My projects prove it, and it shows. Any other comments or questions?
 Jimmy West said, “I got one. I don’t think you know; I wasn’t beating up on you personally, Nick.”
“Well, I take it that way, Mr. West, because I’m personally the Project Manager.”
“Well, I understand that” West said.
“I don’t keep nobody in the dark,” Henricks replied.
“Okay. What I asked for was to allow these gentlemen right here who own these businesses to have some input downtown. And this thing got run all around the table here for no reason. And if that offended you, then I am sorry.”
“Well, it did,” Hendricks replied.
“Well, I’m sorry that it did,” West said.
“Well, I’m sorry, it did,” Hendricks replied.
“But the bottom line is nobody came in here to kick your ass over Streetscape,” West said.
“Well, it sure felt like it did, Mr. West. It does,” said Hendricks.
Mr. West said, “Well, I’m sorry you feel that way.”
“I am sorry you feel that way, yes Sir,” Hendricks replied.
City Manager Marilyn Sellers interjected saying, “I’ll just have to say I’ve seen a lot of correspondence from staff and emails, and we have really corresponded with all the downtown business through Main Street and through different committees. Staff have reached out: I see a lot of correspondence. But we could always do better, and we will try our best in the future. I'm not sure how, because I've noticed and have personally seen the commitment and the correspondence that they have given.”
Councilman West commented, “I don't think anybody's questioning the city side of their commitment, Marilyn. I don't think that at all. I don't think these gentlemen question that. We're just trying to figure out a better way to keep people informed and for them to have their input and we are not doing that.
I know and I agree with Nick. We can’t go in there and fix their business for them. I know that; they know that. But they feel like they are kept in the dark.”
City Attorney Mickey Corry reminded everyone, “We have gotten so far off the agenda.”
Councilman West stated, “I haven’t even seen the plans downtown. So, if I’ve not seen them, I’m sure they haven’t seen them.”
Sellers replied, “We’ve not either. They have not been released from the consultant. That is what we keep trying to tell everyone. We don’t have them yet.”
Again Atty. Corry reminded city council they had strayed far from the agenda. So, Mayor Neisler asked for a motion to adjourn. Mr. Miller made the motion, and the vote was unanimous.
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Kings Mountain women honored
Proctor and Wingo named
Distinguished Women of Clev. Co.

By Betsy Wells

The Cleveland County Commission for Women will host its twenty-ninth Distinguished Women’s Banquet on Thursday, August 26, 2021, at the LeGrand Center, 1800 E. Marion St, Shelby at 6:30 PM.  Valerie Boyd (704-813-7713) is chairing the 2021 Banquet Committee. Tanzy Wallace (704-300-5439) is co-chair.
The Commission solicited nominations from the community to find these “Distinguished Women”.  After reviewing the numerous applications that were submitted, the group selected the following women for the 2021 Distinguished Women Awards:
1. Carol Ann Hoard:  Known as The Christmas Tree Lady who has spread Christmas cheer and goodwill throughout appearances in New York on “The Today Show” & last year throughout Shelby distributing toilet paper and gift cards during the Covid crisis.
2. Lisa Proctor:  First female Chief of Police in Kings Mountain and Cleveland County. A leader in her community. Joined the Kings Mountain Police Department in 1992. Describes herself as a Christian, writer, competitive horseback rider, & cancer survivor.
3.  Terricia (Teresa) Wingo:  Known as the “Trunk Lady” throughout this area because she gives food, clothing, etc to the needy. Even the shoes off her feet if someone is barefoot and needs shoes. This is her mission in life.  A true Good Samaritan.
   Tickets for the banquet are $40 and may be picked up at the Cleveland County Arts Council on Courthouse Square in Shelby (9AM to 5 PM) Tuesday, Aug 2nd through Friday, Aug 20th.    No tickets will be sold at the door, nor will money be taken at the event. Please go by the Arts Council to get your tickets.
   Also tickets may be purchased on line at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2021-distinguished-women-banquet-tickets-163495325921. Check out the Commission for Women’s Facebook page for additional information.
   Members of the Commission are: Valerie Boyd, Tanzy Wallace, Diane Davis, Debra Blanton, Linda Martin, Robert Miller, Shirley Lail, Mary Accor, Cathy Robertson, Betsy Harnage, Patti Alexander, Joyce Coleman, Sandy Bailey, Holly Wall, Betsy Wells, and Commissioner Ronnie Whetstine.
Women who have been honored:
(1992)  * NC Senator Helen Rhyne Marvin, *Joyce Cashion, *NC Rep Edith Lutz,   *Martha Lee Scruggs, *Rosalynd Gilliatt,   *Grace Hamrick,   *Doris Borders,  Patty Dorian,   Dorothy  Edwards,    * Aileen Ford,   *Ellen Powell,    Dot Roark 
(1993)  Chinetta Brooks,     *Arrie Ellis,     * Virginia Raymer
(1994)  Marietta Floyd,  Jacqueline  Lavender,    *Thelma McVae
(1995)  Nancy Abasiekong,   Suzi Kennedy,    Linda Thrift
(1996)  Anganette Homsley,   *Dr. Lonnie Proctor,   Elizabeth Shipley
(1997)  Dr. Dottie McIntyre,  *Esther Plummer,  Kay Archer Price,   *Betty Withrow
(1998)  Julia Banks,   * Adelaide Craver,    Anne Short
(1999)  *Barbara Brock,    *Erma Drum,    Madge Wray
(2000)  *Rosaline Hunt,    Emily Ousley,      *Jackie Rountree
(2001)  Commissioner  Mary Accor,  the late Fay Webb Gardner,
             *Katie Norris,  Page Sherer
(2002)  *Beverly Shuford,    *Kathleen Hamrick,  * Ezra Bridges
(2003)  Karla Haynes,     *Brenda Page,     *Betty Roberts
(2004)  LouVerne McCray,     Jane Bryson Blake,     the late Bess Gardner Hoey
(2005)  *Betty Jean Mauney,    *Aloyse Jones,   * Annie Farley Dawkins
(2006)  Margie Christopher,       Shirley Lail,      Phyllis Sims
(2007)  Dr. Nellie Aspel,   *Lucille  Evans,    Mary Neisler  
(2008)  Shirley Brutko,  *Daeira Roberts,  * Evelyn  West
(2009)  Jo Powell Boggs, Lillie Hinton,  Zita  Roberts
(2010)  *Sybil Dixon, Jeanne Patterson, Suzette Ross, Elizabeth “Lib” Stewart
(2011)  * Lou Ballew, Helen Barrow, Elizabeth “Lib” Revels, Ruth Wilson
(2012)   Annie Mae Ross Beam, Dr.Collette Deviney, Patti Norman, Stella Putnam
(2013)   Dr Laura Bingham, Jane Cooke, Mary Degree, Dr. Jane King
(2014)   Libbey Lavender, Dr. Linda Hopper, Betsy Wells
(2015)  Dr. Shannon Kennedy,   Sharon Martin,   Marguerite Mebane
(2016)  Gaye DeVoe, Shearra Miller, Macy Stinchcomb, Rev. Frances Webber
(2017)  Doris H. Dedmon, Ramona Gash, Kathryn Hamrick, Kathy Wilson
(2018)  Tropzie McCluney, Bess-Alice Phifer,  Venita Roberts
(2019)  Susan K. Allen, Betty Gamble,  Dr. B.J. Zamora
(2020)  No Banquet--COVID
(* deceased)
   Committee Chairwomen include Valerie Boyd, 2021 Banquet Chair, 704-813-7113 cell. vrboyd@bellsouth.net. Tanzy Wallace, 2021 Banquet Co-Chair, 704-300-5439 tanzybw@gmail.com, Betsy Wells, 2021 Publicity Chair. 704-477-7024 cell betsywells@yahoo.com.
 
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Governor Roy Cooper

Governor signs Executive Order requiring Vaccine Verification for state employees

Urges other
agencies and
private employers
to do the same 


On July 29, Governor Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. announced that state government would begin verifying vaccination status of its workers. Employees not vaccinated are required to wear a mask and be tested at least once a week. Thursday’s announcement comes as North Carolina’s latest upswing in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations is driven by unvaccinated North Carolinians.
 “Until more people get the vaccine, we will continue living with the very real threat of serious disease, and we will continue to see more dangerous and contagious variants like Delta,” said Governor Cooper.
NCDHHS updated guidance encourages private sector businesses to, at a minimum, verify vaccination status for their workers as well. The requirement for state government employees applies to cabinet agencies and is included in Executive Order 224.
All workers must either:
1. Provide proof that they are Fully Vaccinated; or
2. Be tested at least once a week for COVID-19.
All other state and local government agencies are strongly encouraged to voluntarily adopt similar policies.
“There is only one way out of this pandemic and that is vaccination. Our trends are accelerating at an alarmingly fast rate and the highest rates of viral spread are happening in areas with low vaccination rates and among those who are not fully vaccinated,” said Secretary Cohen. “If you are already vaccinated, I call on you to urge your unvaccinated family and friends to get their shot now. It is not an understatement to say that you will save lives by doing so.”
The NCDHHS updated guidance reminds unvaccinated people that they need to continue practicing the three Ws – wear a mask in all indoor public settings, wait six feet apart in all public settings and wash hands often. In addition, unvaccinated people should not gather with other unvaccinated people who do not live with them. If they do, they should stay outside and keep 6 feet of distance. In addition, unvaccinated people should not travel.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued new mask guidance this week based on levels of transmission in communities. The new maps designate counties as areas of low (blue), moderate (yellow), substantial (orange) or high (red) transmission. Moving forward, everyone in a red or orange county in North Carolina, including those who have been vaccinated, should wear a mask in public indoor settings.
Additionally, in accordance with the updated CDC guidance, all K-12 schools should require universal masking, regardless of vaccination status. NCDHHS is updating its guidance for schools to align with this recommendation.
To date, North Carolina has administered nearly 9.8 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, with 57 percent of the adult population fully vaccinated. Sixty-one percent of adults have received at least one dose of the vaccine, including 86 percent of North Carolinians 65 and over.

Planning and Zoning Board to discuss Comprehensive Plan on August 10

By Loretta Cozart

The City of Kings Mountain’s Planning and Zoning Board meets the second Tuesday of every month. This month’s meeting is scheduled for August 10. On the agenda is slated discussion of the city’s new Comprehensive Plan used to implement the new Unified Development Ordinance approved by city council on June 30.
During the July 27 City Council Meeting, Planning Director Stuart Gilbert reminded citizens that this meeting is important since the Comprehensive Plan is the tool used to interpret the UDO. The city has until December 31 to develop the city’s Comprehensive Plan.
In addition, the board will also discuss Prestige Corporate Development, LLC’s (Brinkley Properties, LLC, owner) request for voluntary annexation. City Council has scheduled a public hearing for August 31 at 6 pm to rezone property at 1017 Phifer Road, 1025 Phifer Road, and 1027 Phifer Road, consisting of 52.95 acres from R-10, now known as Suburban Residential (SR), to Semi Urban Residential (SU).
The Planning and Zoning Board makes recommendations to city council on various issues that come before them. It is the city council’s job to approve or deny such requests during their meetings. The next City Council meeting is August 31.
The Planning and Zoning Board members are Chairman Doug Lawing, Ron Humphries, Renee Bost, Ronnie Franks, Joseph Allen, Bobby Elliot, Donald Adkins, Todd Wilson, Chris Jolly, Clinton Bouldin, and Kyle Yarbro.
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tim moore

NC House Speaker
says vaccine choice
is a personal matter

On July 26, NC House Speaker Tim Moore responded to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS) announcement that the Division of State Operated Healthcare Facilities (DSOHF) will now require employees at all state healthcare facilities to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by September 30.
All DSOHF employees who are not fully vaccinated by the deadline will "be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, for unacceptable personal conduct," according to the announcement.
“I have personally been vaccinated against COVID-19, and I have done my best to help educate the public and urge others to get vaccinated if they choose to do so. But at the end of the day, the decision whether, or not, to vaccinate is a personal one and should be made between a doctor and patient. North Carolinians will not be bullied into being vaccinated against their will, particularly with a vaccine that has yet to be approved by the FDA.”
He continued, “Our healthcare workers are certainly capable of weighing the risks and benefits and can make their own decision about the vaccine. This mandate could force healthcare workers to choose between their employment and their conscience. Now is not the time to risk losing any of our healthcare workers who have been at the front lines of this pandemic.”

Trackview Hall Event Center
is now open for business

By Loretta Cozart

Shane and Sherryl Adams announce the opening of Trackview Hall Event Center, a venue at 205 S. Battleground Avenue in downtown Kings Mountain.
The 5,000 sq. ft. facility has been completely transformed from the consignment shop that once occupied the space into a modern facility that can be used for weddings, receptions, or corporate events. New bathrooms have been installed, along with a bride’s room, and a modern prep kitchen. The space is accessible from the Battleground Avenue and has plenty of parking available in the  Cherokee Street Parking Lot.
“One of the biggest dilemmas we faced was what to do with the floor.  I wanted to use stained concrete, but we explored other ideas as well,” said Sherryl. “The old tiles were asbestos, so we had them professionally removed. Even so, you can see where the old Trackview
tiles were. We considered self-leveling epoxy to hide it but learned that it would not hide the pattern left from the tile. In the end, we went with our original idea.”
“This was a big job,” said Shane. He was the general contractor and that saved the couple money in the long run. “Even so, I spent many 60-hour weeks down here getting this place ready. We continue to do work to improve the space and recently added an industrial refrigerator and ice machine.”
“We have a maximum capacity of 273, but the space gives us flexibility. In our current setup, we have seating for 94 on the right side and seating for 96 at the round tables. We can divide the space with curtains and once the wedding is complete, add additional tables in the space where guests had just sat and observed the ceremony.”
The space is tastefully decorated, with modern touches. The tin ceiling remains and has been painted black. The color scheme is a good backdrop for a wedding, letting the bride and her bridesmaids take center stage in this lovely facility.
A sprinkler system is installed, and crystal chandeliers adorn the ceiling. The metal poles have been sheathed in wood which are also accented with lights. “We are also going to add optional brighter lighting, should a company hold a corporate meeting here need brighter lighting so folks can take notes,” Shane added.
When asked what he planned to do now that this facility is nearly complete, Shane said, “I’ve got a lot of work to catch-up on now, from my other businesses to my barn, there’s always something to do.”
“We’ve had several events here already,” Sherryl said. “We been so busy, we haven’t had time for an open house. But we do plan to have one so the community can come to see the transformation. We’ll be sure to announce it, so everyone knows.”
For more information, contact Trackview Hall.com or call 704-259-5806.

New restaurants slated for KM

By Loretta Cozart

The Kings Mountain Herald has learned that a Biscuitville and an A&W Restaurant are in the works for Kings Mountain, but neither restaurant shared a timeline for breaking ground.
Biscuitville is a privately held regional fast-food restaurant chain consisting of 62 locations in North Carolina and Virginia. The restaurant specializes in breakfast food and Southern cuisine. All biscuits served at Biscuitville restaurants are made from scratch "hot every 15 minutes."  The chain plans to build the new restaurant beside Burger King on York Road.
A&W Restaurants, based in Lexington, Kentucky, announced last week that three new restaurants would be built locally. The Herald learned that the A&W Restaurant in Kings Mountain will be built closer to Catawba Two Kings Casino.
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Cleveland County
Board Of Elections

On July 19, Governor Roy Cooper announced the appointment of Doug Sharp as the Chairman of the Cleveland County Board of Elections. Subsequently all board members were sworn in. Pictured are members of the new board. Front row, left to right: Debbie Clary and Mary Accor. Back row, left to right, Doug Sharp, Allen Langley, and Al Paksoy.
Photo by Cleveland County Board of Elections
 
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Wi-Fi Installation
in Downtown Kings Mountain

Downtown Wi-Fi installation began in July and will be completed by August 31 –  Shown above  is a map showing the general location of the access points and the approximate coverage area.                                                                                                                                                                                                          (Photo by City of Kings Mountain Main Street Program)
 
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National Night Out
Aug. 3 at Patriots Park

The City of Kings Mountain will celebrate National Night Out, Tuesda3y, August 3, at the Gazebo in Patriots Park.
This special event gives the community the opportunity to meet local law enforcement and first responders while offering food, music and a variety of family friendly activities.
Community Partners such as Safe Kids of Cleveland County and Kings Mountain YMCA, will be on hand with games and activities as well. Special guests include Cleveland Community College’s Yeti mascot and Chase from Paw Patrol.
National Night Out is an annual event designed to strengthen communities by encouraging neighborhoods to engage in stronger relationships with each other and with the local law enforcement partners.
Great food, fun games, inflatables and much more are available! All the fun starts in Patriots Park at 6 pm. Patriots Park is located at 220 South Railroad Avenue. Due to this special event, a portion of Railroad Avenue and West Gold Street surrounding Patriots Park will be closed beginning at 5:30pm, August 3, and remain closed or barricaded until 9:30 pm. Please use extreme caution when traveling in the area due to the increase in motor vehicles and pedestrians. Please plan to travel different roads  if  you  are  impacted  by this change.
For more information on National Night Out, contact the City of Kings Mountain’s Special Events Department at 704-730-2101, or visit their website at www.KingsMountainEvents.Com. You may also visit their Facebook page at @cityofkmspecialevents.

Equus Partners received approval for 300,000 sq. ft. shell building
and financial incentives

By Loretta Cozart

During last month’s city council meeting, Equus Partners received approval from Kings Mountain City council to construct a 300,000 sq. ft. shell building and to provide financial incentives for Project Joe.    The item had been continued from the May City Council meeting.
Planning Director Stuart Gilbert shared some background on the project, reminding City council that in March 2020 Council approved a spec building on the site with financial incentives. In the interim, a new economic development policy was put into place. “The former project was for a manufacturing building, but the new project is for a warehouse/distribution center. City council’s approval allows Equus Partners to receive financial incentives in either case,” Gilbert said.
Tom Johnson, attorney for Equus Partners spoke in favor of the project and thanked City council for considering the request.
Councilman Allen made the motion to approve a developer agreement to construct the 300,000 sq. ft. shell building and provide financial incentives. City council voted unanimously to approve. The closest access point to the property is from Sara Lee Access Road near Hanes Brands.
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The Joy Theater Complex. Photo by Loretta Cozart

KMLT announces 
renovations at the Joy

To become one of the leading entertainment venues in the region

Kings Mountain Little Theatre, its officers, and Board of Directors announce their next major project for the Joy Performance Center and the Liberty Mountain Garden. A major project that many, especially the Ladies, have been hoping for is a restroom renovation and expansion. The time is now!
This major renovation will enhance the original Joy Theater design elements for the façade, will extend the lobby area, and add bathrooms. All these elements will be features of the project. The Joy and the Liberty Mountain Garden are already a cornerstone of downtown Kings Mountain. This project will transform the complex into one of the leading entertainment venues in the region!
KMLT will soon celebrate 20 years at the Joy. During those years KMLT has accomplished a great deal with the generous support of the community, allowing them to successfully  complete  numerous  projects to enhance their facility. 
   The campaign allows for a one-time donation or up to a five-year pledge with a variety of giving levels.
The campaign’s goal is ambitious, approaching $595,000. However, they have already received initial pledges from local families that are helping make this monumental campaign a reality. KMLT’s officers and Board are 100 percent in support of the project with their pledges.
   KMLT is a tax-exempt, 501c3 non-profit and will provide a receipt for any donation.
   Please contact Jim Champion for further information at jim@kmlt.org or 704-730-9408.  Kings Mountain Little Theatre appreciates your support.

Scenes from KM’s LIVE
at  Patriots Park Concert and Cruise-In

Patriots Park was filled to overflowing during last week's Concert and Cruise-in featuring D.J. Jim Shaefer and the Voltage Brothers.

Photos by Loretta Cozart and Angela Padgett
 
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Pictured left to right: Mike and Bryan Butler in front of the new eight-bay facility at 404 E. King Street. Photo by Loretta Cozart

Butler continues the family’s
reputation for quality auto service

By Loretta Cozart

When Mike Butler decided to open Butler’s Garage in 1995, little did he know that his son, Bryan, who was about to graduate college at UNC-Charlotte, would follow in his footsteps twenty-four years later. Mike started the business after taking early retirement from Winn-Dixie when the Kings Mountain store announced it was closing. He opened a one-bay garage at 205 E. King Street and over the years, the business expanded to three-bays.
“Opening a garage wasn’t such a far reach for my dad. His father, Claude ‘Smokie’ Butler, was a backyard mechanic who taught his  kids  mechanical BUTLER
work; they had a garage on their property. Dad started buying equipment and pretty soon he was doing a lot of the pre-work with Kings Mountain Auto Sales, getting their cars ready to sell. They kept him really, really busy. His reputation just grew from there. He always had cars in the lot and had the reputation for hiring good mechanics,” Bryan said of his dad.
After college, Bryan became a commercial relationship banker with a huge territory in western NC and worked in that field for 25-years. I did a lot of driving,” he recalls. “One day, dad came to me and said he was going to retire. Mom had retired and he was ready to do so, too. The more I thought about it, I thought maybe I could take the business, grow it, and have someone run it for me. My wife, Stephanie, was supportive of me and said we were in a good place in our lives to try and that I should go for it. When I asked dad about it, he said he thought that would be cool.”
Two years later, Bryan and Stephanie bought a lot at 404 E. King Street, just down the block from the shop’s old location. “The rest is history. I disappeared from the banking industry and started doing this. I just wish I had done it 10-years earlier.”
Mike now helps in the business. “I put dad on special projects. He’s my go-to-guy for the motors and the bigger jobs that we get around here; I don’t think I’ve ever seen him happier. To be able to work with my dad now is really great, because I had been away from Kings Mountain for a long time.”
Butler’s Tire and Auto Service currently has eight-bays, with a mechanic working in each. They shop specializes in full-service work and are one of a few in town that do. “We do everything, from tires, to engines, to transmissions. Some places won’t do valve cover gaskets, but we do it all - including tires. We are a one-stop-shop,” Bryan said. “And we keep all the work in-house.”
“We bought all-new ROTARY® equipment when we opened this shop. They are well-known for lifts and alignment machines. And we are the only shop in town with a zero entry lift, so low cars like Corvettes can drive straight onto the lift and not worry about rubbing. People who lower their cars can come here and to get alignments and things like that.”
Bryan says he focuses on customer service, offering a 2-year warranty on most repairs. “We are a good old family business with a good reputation. If someone is unhappy about something, they can just come talk with me. I’ll be glad to have a conversation with them and make it right.” Bryan said, “Our reputation is something I want to continue to build upon. That’s why we have been for around so long.”
When asked where he sees the business going, Bryan said, “I feel we are going to continue to grow. We’ve got two-acres here and have plenty of room if we want to expand. I am always looking for other ventures, like popular franchises that might be a hit here. I own the property next to me it has good road frontage on King Street. So, I keep my options open.”
   “But my first job is to make sure this place does really well. So far, it’s been really good. We are growing every month and that’s all you can ask for,” he said. “I am excited I am part of the future here. If I’m going to do this, I’m going to do it right. I want everyone to come here and feel comfortable while they sit in the lobby. Customers can watch TV and enjoy a free water or coffee. If you have to get your car fixed, and you have to stay here, I want you to be comfortable. This is my vision built on my father’s reputation.”
When asked about the 1948 Ford he drives around town, Bryan shared the story. “We moved back to Kings Mountain about a year ago and we were looking for a house with property. We came across the Herndon residence and went to see it. That truck was in the garage. So I asked, ‘Does the truck come with the house?’” It did, and Bryan didn’t have to do anything to the truck; he drives it as he found it. “All I did was put stickers on the side and put gas in it. That’s it. It is definitely a conversation starter.”
Bryan Butler and wife Stefanie now live in Kings Mountain with their two boys, Ethan, 20, a junior at Virginia Tech, and Corbin, 9, who is in the fourth grade. One day, Bryan may have a similar conversation with his sons about taking over Butler’s Tire and Auto Service. But for now, he’s glad to be back home in Kings Mountain with his family carrying on the family tradition in a business his father started over 25 years ago.

Appalachian Gear Company ramps
up production with new KM facility

Appalachian Gear Company, an outdoor lifestyle company specializing in American-made performance apparel and gear, is proud to announce its expansion into a new manufacturing facility in Kings Mountain. The move allows the brand to significantly increase production of its award-winning All-Paca™ products, while creating jobs in the Charlotte metropolitan area.
Over the past 30 years, Appalachian Gear Company’s founders watched apparel manufacturing leave the United States. Since getting started in Charlotte in 2018, App Gear Co has always manufactured 100% of its fabric in its own facility, with product assembly taking place at various factories across the Southeastern U.S. As demand grew for the brand’s unique performance Hoodies, Crews, accessories, and gear, it became clear it was time to find a larger space that could accommodate the pace of manufacturing needed to keep up. As a result, App Gear Co’s founders returned to their roots and relocated to historic Kings Mountain, where they started their first-ever manufacturing operation. By staying in North Carolina, App Gear Co is able to have better oversight of the manufacturing process, ensure the production of higher quality garments and gear, and guarantee employees have a safe working environment.
“App Gear Co really started growing two years ago as more people began to find out about us, and then COVID struck,” says John Gage, co-founder of Appalachian Gear Company. “Ironically, 2020 was the year that our brand’s public awareness exploded, and we really struggled to keep up with demand in the face of global supply chain issues that impacted our flow of raw material from Peru. I know to a lot of folks, the decision to find a bigger, better space to grow our business in the midst of all that was unthinkable, but we just see it as staying true to the entrepreneurial spirit that helped us start the brand  in the first place.”
Appalachian Gear Company is an outdoor lifestyle company specializing in performance-based clothing and equipment manufactured in the United States. We combine decades in the textile industry with countless miles logged on trails across the country to introduce innovative and environmentally friendly products that provide performance and value. Our All-Paca garments are made from 100% Alpaca fiber and deliver unmatched breathability, comfort, and performance with less impact on the environment than synthetics. We understand the importance of Getting Out and Staying Out, and believe time spent in the outdoors leads to a happier, healthier life. Learn more at appalachiangearcompany.com.
   Production has commenced at the new facility, with a ribbon cutting ceremony in the plans for July. For more information, visit appalachiangearcompany.com.

Community partners host a free Healthcare
Olympics
 resource drive-thru event

On Thursday July 29, from 3 – 5 pm, the Cleveland County Health Department, Department of Social Services, and other community partners are hosting the Healthcare Olympics, a drive-thru community resource fair with free giveaways including, but not limited to diapers, wipes, medicine lock boxes, goodie bags, and more!
The event will take place in the front parking lot of the Cleveland County Public Health Center located at 200 S Post Rd, Shelby. Come learn more about the services offered at the Cleveland County Health Department and Department of Social Services, Safe Kids Cleveland County, Child Care Connections, Cleveland County Partnership for Children, Medicaid Transformation, and more! The event is open to everyone.
Safe Kids Cleveland County will be demonstrating the dangers of hot cars. Diapers were donated by March of Dimes and Seventh Generation.
“Due to our involvement in the COVID-19 response, the Cleveland County Health Department has had more interaction with county residents and community partners than ever”, said DeShay Oliver, Deputy Health Director. “However, we want people to know that while disease prevention and mitigation is a major role of public health, we offer a broad array of health services at the health department. This drive-thru is an opportunity for the health department and many of our community partners to educate community members about the services available to them while also providing free resources to help support healthy lifestyles in a COVID-friendly and convenient drive-thru format.”
   For more information, call 980-484-5336 to speak with Nurse-Family Partnership Nursing Supervisor, Dashé Lawton.

Never leave a child alone in a car, not even for a minute

In response to the latest hot weather, Kings Mountain Police Department has partnered with Safe Kids Cleveland County to host a Hot Car Awareness event.
Using a large digital thermometer to display the temperature inside and outside a vehicle, Chief Lisa Proctor and Detective Sergeant Lance Hamrick demonstrate how temperatures can quickly climb to dangerous levels. The Kings Mountain Police Department used the display to show the difference in a car’s temperature one hour apart. The photos show the drastic change in a very short period. Last year, a total of 26 kids died in the North Carolina, related to being left in hot cars. Since 1990, 212 children have died across the US.
As evidenced in the display, a vehicle parked outside with temperatures in the high 80s, can see temperatures rise inside the vehicle at 88.4 degrees to 133 degrees in one hour. At the two-hour mark, the car’s internal temperature reached 145 degrees.
 “The unfortunate thing is that these tragedies are completely avoidable,” said Jessica Crawford Safe Kids Coordinator for Cleveland County. “By taking simple steps, we can help one another prevent the tragedy of child heatstroke.”
In the last 20 years, Safe Kids from all over the world have partners with agencies such as Kings Mountain Police Department to bring awareness and prevent deaths to children ages 0-18. According to Safe Kids Worldwide, children are more at risk of heatstroke as their body heat rises three to five times faster than an adult.
On an 80-degree day, the inside of a closed car can, within minutes, exceed 100 degrees. Cracking a window does not help keep the inside of a car cool.
   Awareness campaigns, such as Safe Kids N.C.’s “Look Before You Lock” campaign, along with hot car displays, help educate the public on the grave dangers of leaving a child in the car for just one minute.
Detective Hamrick stated, “we feel it is our duty to not only protect our smallest citizens but to help prevent unnecessary injury and death when possible.”
Please spread the word to never leave a child alone in a car not even for a minute.
 Safe Kids North Carolina reaches out to parents, caregivers, and children to prevent childhood injuries. For more information, visit www.ncsafekids.org.
The display was moved to Patriots Park for the car show and concert last weekend to bring additional awareness and exposure to more people in other communities as well.

Library renovations
now complete

During the last year, Mauney Memorial Library has undergone some much needed renovations, including a new roof, plasterwork, paint, window restoration, new storm windows, and new flooring. The efforts taken by the city have returned the luster to this community landmark.
One of the first projects was to restore the windows throughout the home, and there are more than forty of them. Each window had to be removed and taken off-site to clean, remove years of  old  paint,  repaint,  and  Library reglaze. It was a painstaking process, but worth the effort.
Storm windows were also installed and are allowed under the house’s designation with the National Historic Register because the original windows are single-pane, and the storms will help protect them. The cost to restore the windows and add storms was approximately $75,000 - $80,000.
Library Director Christina Martin explained the process, “All the windows were marked and each one removed. After the windows were restored, each window was returned to its original space. We learned that a small detail in each window indicated the wealth of Dr. J.G. Hord. The window company owner came to give us an estimate and he touched this little piece of gingerbread and asked, ‘Do you know what that means? It means they had money.’”
The small pieces of gingerbread in each window were hand carved, which took time and added to the cost of the home. The house was built in a time when Kings Mountain had fewer than 3,000 people, and the majority of the homes in town were built by the mill at a cost of $1,200 or less. Yes, Kings Mountain did have its share of nicer homes at the time, but the majority were modest dwellings for millworkers and shopkeepers. Without records, it is unclear the exact cost to build the Hord Mansion, but from the home’s detail one can see that Dr. Hord was a wealthy man.
Another project undertaken by the city was new flooring. The mansion’s original floors are wood, which give and flex when walked upon. In years past, tile was installed over the wood, but it cracked due to flexing. Now the entire main floor of the original 1923 mansion has luxury vinyl plank flooring installed. It continues from the front door throughout the original structure. The house also had two additions, one in 1988 and the other in 2000. “Our plan is to extend this flooring to those areas when the budget allows to give the three areas a single cohesive look,” Martin said.
Another touch to unify the facility is new paint. The original home has been painted a lovely blue/gray paint color and the trim repainted white. It adds a soothing mood to the space and encourages readers to relax and enjoy their time at the library. The front room to the right of the foyer is now a reading room. In years past, it housed the card catalogue and, later, four computers. Now seating once again invites readers to sit and read.
Last spring, the roof was replaced. The original tiles had seen better days and water was leaking into the house, so much so that plaster on the ceilings and walls had to be replaced in several rooms upstairs after repairs were complete. The new roof is metal, made with a similar pattern and color to the original clay tiles. This roof should protect the structure for decades, if not longer.
“We are getting away from paper signs here at the library. Using the Cricut machine that we have in our MakersSpace, we made signs in-house that gives Mauney Memorial Library a more polished look. We utilized the city’s new color scheme and that adds a nice touch, too,” she said.
When asked about the genealogy collection, Martin replied, “We have the history and genealogy in the main collection. However, any items that we only have one of are housed in our archive room upstairs and visitors can request to see those files. We have filing cabinets filled with family histories and church histories upstairs to keep them safe.”
Aside from the roof and windows, the front columns of the Hord Mansion were also repaired, due to cracks in the stucco. A pink substance was put on them as part of the repair process. “Several folks called us about that, and we reassured them it was only temporary,” Martin shared.
Most visitors do not go upstairs in the library, but these rooms once housed a teacherage and apartments for a time. Now they serve as an office, storage, archive, and a break area. Over the years, the floors became worn, and the roof leaked allowing water to enter. The ceilings and walls have been replastered and the floors refinished. And city employees have taken an interest in the project. “Every light fixture up here period to the 1920s. Lights on either side of the hallway are cast. One is stamped 1914 and the other 1920. One of the guys in public works is an antiques collector and he found two crystal lights from a house built in 1920 and he gave them to us. He is a good friend of the library,” said Martin.
The parlor, a smaller room sandwiched between what were once two bedrooms, sits behind the Juliette balcony seen from the front of the house. Before the renovation it was a work room, with a copier and other office equipment stored there. After restoration, it has taken its place again as a parlor just outside the Librarian’s office. The room has been replastered and repainted, and the floors now restored. Martin shared, “When guests and dignitaries visit, as did city council last week, we welcome them in the parlor. It is the little jewel of this home. The transformation is just amazing and it is now a relaxing space.”
“During the renovation, some molding was missing upstairs, so Darryl Dixon took a piece to Cleveland Lumber and they made us new molding to match,” Martin said. “I was really impressed with their work, I must say.”
Future renovation plans for the library include replacing the shingles roofing on the additions with a metal roof also.
 We would also like to extend the luxury vinyl flooring to the additions too, to give better flow to the entire house.
   “When the question comes up if we are moving anytime soon, I tell people we aren’t going anywhere. This is where we are going to be,” Martin says with a smile.
While the library bears the name of Jacob S. Mauney, the Mauney’s never lived in this home. Dr. J.G. Hord built this home for his family in the early 1920s. It is believed to be the first building in town designed by an architect, but no plans exist, and the architect’s name is not known. Two years were required to build the house. After its completion in 1923, Mrs. Hord was known to have beautiful roses and flowers in formal gardens on the property. The Hord family was large and social, and the house offered a great vantage point from which to watch President Hoover’s 1930 ride through town, which one of the Hord daughters remembers doing. Dr. Hord died three years after moving into the house.
In 1947, the children of Mr. and Mrs. Jacob S. Mauney decided to buy the Hord mansion and donate it to the city in memory of their parents as a home for the library. It was a fitting memorial to the couple who had been so actively involved in the education and betterment of Kings Mountain.
Screen shot 2021 07 22 at 9.31.41 am

City of Kings Mountain
adopts new
 Unified Development Ordinance

By Kimberly Herndon,
Senior Planner,
City of  Kings Mountain
Planning Department


On Tuesday, June 29, City Council adopted the City of Kings Mountain Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). The UDO provides regulations for land use and development in the City of Kings Mountain and its Extra Territorial Jurisdiction. The new ordinance replaces the City of Kings Mountain Zoning Ordinance, originally adopted in December of 1996, and the City of Kings Mountain Subdivision Ordinance, originally adopted in April of 1996, and all of the subsequent amendments. These ordinances had long served the community. With changing times, it was time for the ordinances to changes as well.
   The need for a UDO came about as a result of a number of factors. In 2019, the North Carolina General Assembly adopted a complete reorganization of the state’s planning and development regulations. State standards from 1905 to present day were revised, consolidated, and clarified. The new Chapter 160D mandated that every city and county development regulation in the state to be updated by January 1, 2021. Due to the effects of Covid 19 a six-month extension was allowed, thus bringing the new deadline to July 1, 2021. The City of Kings Mountain UDO became effective on July 1, 2021 in compliance with the state law.
   The city planning staff worked with Kendig Keast Collaborative, a consulting firm known for their work in land use codes and specializing in performance zoning. Bret Keast, Principal, and Kelli McCormick, Senior Associate, worked with the city planning staff to evaluate the existing city ordinances and draft a new unified ordinance to carry the city into the future. A series of community meetings were held via Zoom and in-person. The City Planning & Zoning Board hosted public input sessions, board workshops, and participated in joint workshops with city council. Edits and public hearings continued until the time the ordinance was adopted.
   One goal of the UDO process was to make the code more user friendly and understandable. The entire ordinance was moved to EnCode Plus software. The use of EnCode allows the ordinance to be easily accessed by any from the city’s web site. The code is now a searchable document and can easily lead users to the sections in which they have interest with a simple search by topic. Reference sections appear as interactive links for easy access to charts, tables, and diagrams. Definitions are also linked to text for clarity.
    Another feature of the software is its link to the official zoning map. Once updated, users can search by property address and easily access zoning information as well as information linked to the Cleveland and Gaston County GIS databases. The map function will go live once the official zoning map is updated with the proper zoning terminology.
   The UDO replaced the old Euclidian zoning model that had been used since the 1990’s with a hybrid zoning classification system that merges aspects of Euclidian zoning with performance based zoning. In so doing, the zoning classifications were changed.
   An example of this type of update that effects residential properties is in the difference between the old Residential-10 zoning and the new Suburban Residential Classification. Residential 10 (R-10) zoning was converted to Suburban Residential (SR). The Suburban Residential (SR) classification now allows for three different development types based upon the desired character of a neighborhood. Standard lots (S) is most similar to the old R-10 designation. Cluster (C) and Planned (PL) are additional designations in this classification that allow for higher density development upon compliance with additional development standards. This approach allows housing to be addressed with residential standards, allow for clustering, and bonus techniques compatible with resource protection and quality design.
   The UDO and the related Official Zoning Map are the first steps in moving the development and land uses forward. The City of Kings Mountain and surrounding ETJ are currently experiencing record growth and development requests. Ensuring that land use compatibility is maintained, and that growth is managed in a controlled fashion are critical to community development and sustainability. Development guidelines can often be perceived as difficult or overbearing. In reality, good development is always welcome in a community and encouraged. Development increases the tax base, allows for variety of housing options, new commerce, new jobs, and quality of life.
   The UDO can be accessed on the City of Kings Mountain website on the Community Planning & Economic Development page. The link is: http://online.encodeplus.com/regs/kingsmountain-nc-update/
   The UDO and official zoning map did not make broad scale changes to zoning classifications. If your property was zoned residential prior to July 1, 2021 it is still zoned residential today. The name of the zone has changed. Some changes have been made in allowances and setbacks within zoning classifications. A table of uses is included in the UDO that outlines what uses are permitted in each of the zones. Some uses require special use permits and other uses are limited. Terms and definitions are included to provide clarity. Questions and concerns about land use and the UDO may be addressed to the planning office.
   Zoning permits, rezoning applications, subdivision requests, address requests, and text amendments will be handled as in the past. Forms for such requests continue to be available online. In the near future, these forms will be moved to OpenGov, a new online format being implemented by city staff. At that time, all new applications will come through the online portal and be reviewed by staff.
   A new zoning map will be generated in conjunction with the comprehensive plan that is being written. The City of Kings Mountain had paused its work on the Vision 2040 Comprehensive Plan due to Covid 19 and the inability to host community input sessions in person. The planning staff has restarted these efforts and will work to complete the new plan by the end of 2021/early 2022. Based upon the findings of the comprehensive plan and analysis of existing land uses, economic forecasts, development needs of the community, and supply of undeveloped land, the zoning map will be updated to meet the needs of the future of the community. Public input is welcomed as this process moves forward.