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Painting the Town with Kindness 

Evelyn Henson’s whimsical designs spark joy and fun. by Michelle Boudin Photographs provided by EVELYN HENSON Evelyn Henson wasn’t always sure she could be an artist. The fresh-faced Columbus, Ga., native who painted the popular South End confetti hearts wall remembers walking into her first art class as a college freshman — and being seriously intimidated. “If you think of artists,…

Mystery Maven

In writing her new book, Cathy Pickens finds real-life crime stories are more interesting than fiction.   By Allison Futterman Cathy Pickens is well-known as the author of the Southern Fried mystery series set in a fictional town in South Carolina, her home state. She’s also written a nonfiction book exploring haunted spots and unsolved mysteries in Charleston. In her…

Bookshelf

September Books Notable new releases   Compiled by Sally Brewster The Dutch House, by Ann Patchett Ann Patchett returns with her most powerful novel to date: a richly moving story that explores the indelible bond between two siblings, the house of their childhood and a past that will not let them go. Set over the course of five decades, The Dutch…

My Favorite Things . . .

Julie Eiselt’s preferred way to explore the Queen City is on two wheels. “Peddling through the city can lead to some great little surprises in the form of restaurants, shops and unique urban spaces that are little pockets of organic development,” says Charlotte’s Mayor Pro Tem. Here are a few of the Wisconsin native’s favorite spots. Comments were edited for…

Fall Festivals

FestiFALL Autumn is the season to get outside and check out one of the Queen City’s vibrant festivals. Luckily, Charlotte has plenty to choose from, including the annual Yiasou Greek Festival in Dilworth. Here are a few more picks, plus a couple of out-of-town events that are worth the drive.   Festival in the Park Sept. 20-22: Now in its…

To-Do List

September This month’s five essential dates 9/7 History enthusiasts take note: In collaboration with the Charlotte Folk Society, the Charlotte Museum of History’s annual Backcountry Days Festival explores the cultures and traditions of our region’s early residents, from European colonists to the Catawba Indian Nation. Bring a picnic blanket and stay for the outdoor concert. The festival is free to…

Simple Life

The World After Rain A good Soak is the gift that keeps on giving.   By Jim Dodson Every year about this time, as another summer’s lease expires, I remark to anyone who will listen (i.e. mostly my dog Mulligan) that we’ve survived the hottest summer ever. Unfortunately, this year I turned out to be right. According to the National…

Snapshot

A Stage for All Monica Pettiford’s Porch Productions youth theater company celebrates its 10th season. by Vanessa Infanzon More than 20 years ago, Monica Pettiford staged a sit-in on Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday at Queens University of Charlotte. The silent protest led by Pettiford, then an undergraduate at the liberal-arts university, was successful; it convinced the school’s president to…

The Road Home

The Layered Garden How a new mom came to terms with her husband’s new-found obsession. by Caroline Hamilton Langerman I had finally gotten both babies into an afternoon nap when the doorbell rang. The man in the green jumpsuit on my porch was too attractive to be an escaped convict, so I opened the front door. “Good afternoon, ma’am. Your…

Fostering Fitness

Try It For Life founder Alyse Kelly Jones helps women of all fitness levels meet their training goals. By Michelle Boudin Alyse Kelly Jones is all about empowering women. The 54-year-old managing partner at Novant Health Mintview OB/GYN is known for helping women improve their sex lives — her TedX Talk Charlotte was called “Shedding Sexual Shame (and Some of…