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Aug
20

Chef Rameaux Closing, Liquidating

ChefRam A sad email went out this morning to fans and friends of Chef Rameaux. As has been known, the chef is suffering from terminal cancer. While he has been hopeful that he could return to giving classes, alas he is too sick and will not. The family will be having a moving-out sale on Saturday from 10am to 2pm at the store at 704 N. Person Street.

Attached below is the full text of the letter:

read more…

Aug
20

Ennis Featured in Southern Living

The September issue of Southern Living magazine has a feature worth noting on page 12 of its “Carolina Living” insert. The brief article highlights curator of the Gregg Museum of Art & Design (in NCSU’s Talley Center), Lynn Jones Ennis, and her work to showcase the craft and artistry of textiles. Ennis is a fine, delightful person and the feature is worth the short read.

Aug
19

"Taken For A Ride" Free Showing

The 1996 documentary “ Taken For A Ride ” is being shown for free on Wednesday (8/27) at 7pm at the Colony Theatre. The 52-minute piece documents what is believed to be “death by intent” of public rail transit at the hands of big auto companies such as GM. From the back cover of the video jacket:

Following a long buried trail of auto/oil industry schemes, Taken for a Ride exposes the dummy companies, secret stock transactions and propaganda campaigns that motorized one third of the nation’s streetcars. Tracks were torn up overnight, and ear splitting, bone jarring buses took the trolley’s place. Scores of American cities lost their streetcars, including five of the nation’s ten largest. The same players, organized as “the highway lobby,” then campaigned for a network of urban freeways that would destroy America’s downtowns and turn the dream into a nightmare.

Aug
18

G. Love/John Butler Concert Canceled

Due to an illness, the G. Love & Special Sauce/John Butler Trio concert for Thursday has been canceled, reports David Menconi. Tickets will be fully refunded.

It will be interesting to see in Butler or Tristan Prettyman will be playing any stand-alone gigs instead. They are upholding their date at the Myrtle Beach House of Blues.

Aug
18

Hook Up Closing?

The Raleigh Chronicle is reporting today that the Hook Up Marina Bar and Resort is shutting its doors today. I did not get a chance to eat there, as their slogan was “Eat up, drink up, hook up” [purge]

Aug
17

Holly Park Renderings Available

HollyParkRend1 The much-needed renovation of Holly Park shopping center won’t be complete for about a year, but new renderings of how it will look are posted on-site. The artist portrays a colorful, boxy, EIFS facade that updates the 34 year-old shopping center’s look. The key anchor for the center will be a Trader Joe’s, which will sit alone in a new building where the Wake Paint and Decorating store currently is. The former CCB and Taco Bell site has been replaced with pavement, but just behind it, in the former main driveway of the center, a new 10,000 square foot retail building is going up.

HollyParkRend2 The renderings are an update to previous renderings (.PDF). The only apparent changes center around the signage for the stores. The current Jersey Mike’s site is labeled “Coffee”, while the right end of the new, 10K building shows “Subs”. Adjacent to this space is patio seating, so could it be that Jersey Mike’s is moving across the parking lot to the new space?

The center’s secondary anchor, The Melting Pot will stay put, and is undergoing  an expansion.

Holly Park is being redeveloped by Charlotte’s Lat Purser & Associates . The architect is Finley Design.

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Aug
16

DQ Adds OJ

image Some local Dairy Queen stores are making moves toward reinventing the brand. For instance, the Dairy Queen Grill & Chill in Morrisville (off Davis Drive and Morrisville Carpenter Rd) has added the Orange Julius (Warning: music) brand to its menu.  The Orange Julius brand has been predominantly found in enclosed malls in recent past, but DQ is testing it in a few of their flagship DQ Grill & Chill concepts.  The menu includes the Original Orange Julius (lots of other flavors too) and Premium Fruit Smoothies.

Aug
16

AIGA Raleigh Introduces Town Square

AIGA Raleigh , a member-driven organization of more than 350 local industry students, professionals and educators dedicated to design, has introduced a new Town Square initiative. It gives designers the opportunity to meet fellow designers and professionals in the Triangle area. Town Square is free, public-driven, and approachable. The goal of this initiative is to empower all involved to delve deeper into design by creating their own communities based on shared interests and topics. This enhances the design community for the benefit of all.

The group has already had two meetings, but there are a few more coming up:

  • Writers Block Party: Tuesday, August 19, 6:30 p.m., The Raleigh Times – Town Square group will discuss writing in general, in-depth, in theory, or in relation to specific projects.
  • Interactive: Wednesday, August 27, 7:00 p.m., Café Carolina in Cameron Village – Town Square will discuss everything from Web 2.0 icons to the latest theories on activity-centered design.
  • Photographers: Thursday, August 28, 7:00 p.m., Helios on Glenwood Ave. – Town Square group open to any subject relating to photography.

If there are no topics that interest you above, AIGA Raleigh encourages you to start your own group! Set up a meeting location, time and day each month where you’d like to meet, and pick your topic/interest. AIGA Raleigh will advertise your group publicly and all are invited to meet you there.

Aug
16

City Requests Input on Downtown Parking Plan

The City of Raleigh is seeking comments from citizens regarding downtown parking issues. A public input forum will be held on Aug. 26 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the city council chamber on the second floor of the City Hall. (222 W. Hargett St.)

A draft report of the Master Plan by the City’s parking consultant is linked below. The report includes key observations and recommendations on the City’s parking operations and resources. Interested citizens are invited to study the draft report in preparation for the Aug. 26 forum.

The parking study is nearing completion after a consultant has been working with City staff and the City’s Downtown Parking Task Force. The Downtown Parking Task Force wants to hear comments from the public before the study is presented to the City Council in October.

On the following day, August 27, the final meeting of the Downtown Parking Task Force will be from 8:30-11:30am at City Hall, room 305.

City of Raleigh
Parking & Transportation Master Plan

Aug
16

Hall of Fame Concert Adds After Party at Lincoln Theatre

The Hall of Fame Concert weekend keeps growing! Organizers have added an after-party, added two all-star bands, and a golf event to the busy weekend. Does anyone else seriously think this event is growing to proportions that could make it an annual event that legends would want to be a part of? With the Jimmy V Classic having moved waaaaaay away, there is room for a celebrity event like this each year.

Here’s the official press release about the post-party:

Organizers of the visitRaleigh.com Benefit Concert for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum (“Rock Hall”) and the John Entwistle Foundation, will host an after-party at the Lincoln Theatre in downtown Raleigh following the concert on September 20. The two-day visitRaleigh.com Benefit Concert will take place at the beautiful Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, N.C. on September 19-20, 2008. The late night jam session will feature artists from the much anticipated show as well as several special guests.

The after-party is open to the public and tickets are $14 in advance and $17 at the door. All VIP concert ticket holders gain admission into the after-party by presenting their VIP wristbands. Tickets go on sale Monday, August 18 at 10 a.m. via etix and online at www.lincolntheatre.com .

Opening the late night party will be Grand Society, which kicks off the Emerging Artists Showcase during the benefit concert. Following Grand Society to the stage will be Moonalice, an all-star band whose members include GE Smith (Saturday Night Live, Bob Dylan), Pete Sears (Jefferson Starship, Rod Stewart), Barry Sless (Phil Lesh & Friends, David Nelson Band), Ann & Roger McNamee (the Flying Other Brothers) and Jim Sanchez (Dr. John, Boz Scaggs). Expected to jam with Moonalice late that evening are a number of other artists who have performed over the ensuing two days.

read more…

Aug
14

Ben Stein to Headline Chamber Meeting

stein The Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce is getting ready to have its 120th annual meeting at the new convention center. The keynote speaker for the September 16th event is actor and economic analyst Ben Stein. Stein will give “an eye-opening tour of life’s greatest absurdities, all while focusing on ‘Business, Economics and America.'”

Tickets are $85 and may be purchased at the chamber’s website . wow.

Aug
14

Disney On Ice Coming to RBC Center

The Disney On Ice: Worlds of Fantasy tour will be hitting the RBC Center on December 12. Tickets go on sale on Monday morning (8/18) through Ticketmaster.

Aug
13

Marriott Embraces Its Target

Marriott I had a chance to walk through the new Marriott today and was not surprised. The new hotel, with its gorgeous lobby, does an excellent job of meeting Stormont-Noble’s lofty standards. Raleigh can now be proud that it finally has a downtown hotel that meets national standards.

Previously the focus of critics has been the hotel’s exterior. In person, the building’s exterior is a failure on levels worse than expected. The materials, colors, and window details are vapid. It’s exterior’s role in downtown life is a embarrassment to the Livable Streets concepts prescribed in the city’s original requests. Both the dysfunctional Salisbury Street facade and its service-only Lenoir facade punish interested pedestrians. As predicted, the only ways to enter the building from sidewalks are clustered near the intersection of Fayetteville and Cabarrus Streets, creating a horrible pedestrian experience.

Inside, however, the hotel is outstanding. Dressed with white marble floors and contemporary orange, brown, and tan walls and furniture, the hotel is a welcome, first-rate newcomer to downtown Raleigh. The porte c Marriott3 ochere, understated registration desk, and Starbuck’s Coffee store offer a warm, doorstep for voluminous convention traffic in the future. The hotel’s lobby flows spaciously by a slightly underwhelming gift shop and formal sitting areas adorned with multiple high definition televisions into the hotel’s restaurant, Posta Tuscan Grille (preview to follow). Posta Tuscan also has a dedicated Fayetteville Street entrance, so guests having nothing to do with the convention center will have no trouble finding the restaurant.

The west half of the hotel’s ground floor is where one finds the ballrooms and meeting spaces. Unfortunately the corridor that surrounds the central ballroom is lined with a wall of Salisbury street-facing windows. There is no west facade entrance, so those in the hotel can only look out the window at pedestrians who are likely trying to find their way into the hotel. It’s a tragic flaw that could have been easily remedied by placing a small entrance at the building’s NW corner.

The hotel sits atop a multi-level parking garage. The access to the hotel coincides with the hotel’s escalators that access the underground Convention Center connector. This nice piece of design will be a major convenience for conventioneers using the underground garage. The only problem with the hotel’s downward access to the tunnel is that the walls are bare. Perhaps the final phases of decorating are yet to come, as the hotel has still not reached its official opening date.

Marriott2 The City of Raleigh requested, and subsized a facility that would match the impressive function and form of its new convention center. While the delivered product contributes almost nothing to its neighborhood or the city’s skyline, it will undoubtedly impress its target audience, conventioneers staying on-site. That’s a level of success we can all celebrate.

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