Category Archives: Durham

Durham Bimbe’ Festival

DURHAM ARTS COUNCIL PARTICIPATES IN

BIMBE FESTIVAL

BIMBE KIDS ZONE 2009 “AFRICAN SPIRIT”

Durham, NC: On Saturday, May 16, Artists from the Durham Arts Council’s CAPS Program will join Durham Parks and Recreation in celebrating the spirit of the African community at the 40th Annual Bimbé Cultural Arts Festival. The festival will be held at the CCB Plaza on 201 Corcoran Street from 12 noon – 9 p.m.

The Durham Arts Council will host the Kids Zone and engage children of all ages in dance, drumming, games, stories, and crafts. Under the theme “African Spirit” the Durham Arts Council’s CAPS (Creative Arts in the Public/Private Schools) solicited some of the region’s premiere teaching artists to host the Kids Zone. “African Spirit” presents dynamic hands-on activities from the deep and vibrant roots of African culture and creativity that are the basis of many American art forms.

Allison Davidson, Rachel Galper, Kamu Mimy, and Braima Moiwai, are among the many artists who will provide a fun filled day of activities highlighting the culture and traditions of African communities with our own! Children will create art and music; participate in dance and stories; and play games orginating from Africa.

The Durham Arts Council encourages you to join us at the 40th Annual Bimbé Cultural Arts Festival. Participate and learn from master teaching artists with CAPS program as they share the same talent and enthusiasm that they bring to classrooms in Durham through teaching workshops and residencies.

Creative Arts in the Public/Private Schools (CAPS), provides an easy-to-use and effective way for educators to integrate the arts into the curriculum. Primarily a partnership between Durham Arts Council and Durham Public Schools, this 35-year program places professional artists in public and private classrooms throughout Durham, Orange, and Granville counties to provide creative and interactive residencies that stimulate and engage students in any discipline through creative arts.

For more information about CAPS, visit www.durhamarts.org/artistsintheschools or call Shana Adams at (919) 560-2718.

For more information about Bimbe, call (919) 560-4355 or visit www.durhamnc.gov/bimbe.

Your Last Chance!

I votedI was late coming in to work this morning. No, I didn’t go vote. I did that two weeks ago. I was late because I was watching Senator Obama and his family vote. I don’t know why, it just felt to me like I was watching history. I guess maybe I was. I know I was.

I was just thinking how proud my step-dad and my mother-in-law would be at this moment if they were still with us. I think this is a moment they never even thought would happen. It didn’t happen in their lifetime, but it did for their sons, their daughters and granddaughters. I am sure they would be beaming today.

The girls are off from school today. Durham schools have opted to give them the day off since most of the polling places here are in public schools. With the anticipated record breaking turn outs, it would have been a nightmare to have regular school session. Some people think the kids should have been left in school so that they could be witness to the voting process and the excitement that this particular election is generating. I think that the kids already are aware of the significance of these elections. My daughters (10, 15, & 16) actually watched the debates. They get the Saturday Night Live jokes. They discuss politics with their friends. They even argue about the issues. When I was that age, I didn’t even want to watch the evening news. So yeah, I think they are very aware of what’s going on. They have been going with us to vote since they were babies. And when they got old enough, they even voted in the ‘Kids Vote‘ corner of the voting center.

There’s less than two hours left before the polling places here in North Carolina close at 7:30 p.m. So there’s still time. If you’re in line by 7:30, you have the right to cast your ballot. GO VOTE!

Me, I’m going home to watch the numbers. Here in the East Coast, we’ll have to wait until 1a.m. until all the polling centers across the country. I hope I can stay up that late. Maybe I’ll be late again tomorrow morning.  🙂

In case you didn’t see it this morning, here’s a video of Obama voting. He is so cute with his daughters.

Durham is Voting Early. Are you?

Photo by Scorpiochick @ Izea Overheard

Photo by Scorpiochick @ Izea Overheard

Can you guess which candidates this sign is referring to? Who do you think they’re going to vote for? 🙂

I’m not normally a very politically active person, but presidential elections are an exception. They generate so much hype and excitement. This year’s presidential election is even more exciting than any of the previous ones I’m aware of.

This year is also the first year, that I’m aware of, where early voting is open to everyone. Early voting means that you can start voting now and make sure your vote is in and counted before November 4. Early voting here in Durham, NC started last October 16 and will be going on until November 1st. Voting places have been set up in various locations like malls, shopping centers, schools and other locations to make it more convenient for voters.

In the past we’ve gone to vote as a family on November 4th. The kids go to the Kids Vote area and we go to our side. They love participating in the voting process and get a kick when they ‘guess’ the right winner. My ten year old daughter, The Clone, has even been watching the debates, believe it or not and is even more opinionated than her dad. lol!

The mother of one of her friends knocked on our door last Sunday morning, surprising us. She is among the many volunteers who are going door to door urging and reminding everyone to go out and vote. The campaign to get people out to vote has been tremendous. It is no surprise then to find out that we’re going through a record breaking election.

In Durham County, a record-breaking 6,264 ballots were cast. The previous one-day high of 4,476 voters was set on Oct. 29, 2004, during the last presidential election, the Durham County Board of Elections reported. With 16 more days to go before early voting ends , Durham elections board director Michael Ashe said in a news release that he expects Thursday’s record to be broken.
Source: News & Observer – Early Voting Records Set in State Thursday

UPDATE: as of October 20, over 24,000 people have voted. Click here to get daily updates of the numbers from the Durham County Government Board of Elections: Early Voter Turnout statistics.

North Carolina has traditionally been a red (republican) state. However, I’ve been hearing that if all the registered democrats go out and vote, we can turn this state blue! Actually, I also heard that if ALL Durham democrats go out and vote, we can turn the whole state around! Pretty awesome, isn’t it?

This Thursday, all five of us are going out to vote early. We won’t be voting for the Geezer and the Dingbat. 😛

Conserve Water and Get Penalized?

Lake levelAlong with the rest of the state, I’ve talked and worried about the drought we have been in having all year last year. We were in a bad drought situation last year so the city governments urged all its users to conserve water. While the conservation methods were at first met with resistance, people soon fell in line when confronted with visual proof of the drought, our beloved lakes turning into dry beds. Many of us implemented water conservation methods throughout our homes and businesses and I think we helped ease the burden some.

Thankfully, this year, the rains came back and our lakes are back up to capacity again. The great thing is, even though the lakes are full again, people have gotten into the habit of conserving and were continuing to save water even when it’s not necessary anymore. That’s wonderful, isn’t it?

Well, you’d think so, but as this article from our local paper says, “all this good news does have a potential downside”. The down side is, that people have been conserving so much that the city is now not making enough revenue from selling water. So they are proposing a tiered rate program where anyone who is using a higher volume of water will pay more than someone who is using less. The problem comes with large families like ours though. Although we may be using less water than we did this same time last year, we still use more water than our neighbors who live by themselves and may not even be consciously conserving their water usage. Does that mean that our rate will be higher than theirs? I don’t really know how it will impact us, to be honest with you. Our water bill has not gone down despite the water conservation methods we’ve implemented.

I received this via email today and all the tips they mention, we are already doing without seeing much change in our water bill. But, the way I look at it, whether it makes a difference in the amount of my water bill or not, it is just good common sense practice to do all the conservation methods anyway. We have gotten to be such a wasteful society that we take for granted the conveniences we get. There are still places on this world where running water is a luxury; a luxury that we shouldn’t take for granted lest we lose it.

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A dry spell

Photo from Ilove Durham
photo credit: I Love Durham

Saturday was dreary and cold. Then it started to rain. And I was happy. I was happy even though it was dark, cold and wet because, well, we needed to get wet! We need to get drenched!Durham and most of North Carolina has been in drought conditions for at least a couple of months now, and we, Durham especially, are running out of water. See the photo above? I borrowed that from the I Love Durham website since I didn’t have my camera with me when we went by another major lake last week.  There is very little difference in how they look though. Most of our lakes look like this lately. The photo is of Jordan Lake south of where we are, it was also a major body of water before the drought. Now it looks like a mere brook slicing the river bed and grass has actually started growing on the banks. This ‘lake’ should be full of water all the way to the line of trees in the background. Pretty scary thought for a pretty picture, isn’t it?

It’s even scarier when you realize the magnitude of the drought problem. WaterTechCrunch looks at the water problems that many states in Southeastern United States are facing. We are not alone. This is a huge problem! And yet, it seems like many people here in Durham are quite complacent about it or just don’t realize that it is a problem. I’m not sure if it’s ignorance or apathy? But it just seems like it’s not a big deal to most people around here.

I guess I have been moaning too much here and there about our dwindling water supply. What can I say, I love water! Scary, but we have just a little over a month’s worth of ‘premium water’ according to the City’s website.  So a friend sent me the following inspiration to give us hope:  It must be God

God help us!