August 05, 2021

Hello, Thursday. It's Katie

  • ☀️ Weather: 87 and sunny. Glorious.

🎁 Happy birthday to Axios Charlotte members Keith Alyea, Eric Banks, Richard Eustice, Maggie Fahy, Al Fiero, Maxwell Hanks, Blaine Hurst and Rich Mathieson.

⚾️ Good luck to Ryder Ryan of Huntersville and the rest of the U.S. men’s Olympic baseball team as they take on South Korea in the semifinals this morning at 6am.

  • So right as this newsletter hits your inbox.

Today's Smart Brevity count is 863 words, a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Day cares are struggling

Photo: Katie Peralta Soloff/Axios

Child care centers in North Carolina, which've been struggling for years with a workforce shortage, are grappling with major financial fallout from COVID.

  • That's despite the fact they mostly remained open over the last year.

What's happening: Across the state, nearly one-third of child care centers reported revenue losses of $45,000 or more from the pandemic, according to a new survey from the North Carolina Child Care Resource & Referral Council.

  • Without additional financial support, 20% of respondents say they are at risk of closing within the next six months.

Why it matters: The child care industry is the "workforce behind the workforce," says Kristen Idacavage, director of Kids 'R' Kids of Charlotte, which operates multiple facilities locally.

  • "There is a shortage of spaces and openings [in high quality settings] for Charlotte families that I have not seen in the 18 years that our school has been in operation," Idacavage added

State of play: Several factors are exacerbating the precarious financial situation of child care centers statewide.

  • Operational costs, such as enhanced sanitation, rose as revenue fell amid a drop in enrollment over the last year, says Janet Singerman, president and CEO of Child Care Resources Inc.
  • Day care facilities nationwide were already facing a worker shortage before the pandemic, largely because wages have lagged significantly, says Singerman. Most area facilities pay teachers around $11-$15 an hour.
  • During the pandemic, all sorts of companies, from Costco to McDonalds, have raised their hourly pay — but it's difficult for day cares to compete, as operators locally don't often increase wages much, Singerman adds.

Full story: North Carolina daycares struggle to hang on

2. It's still good

Intermezzo's piroska (left) and sarma (right). Photo: Michael Graff/Axios

We spend a lot of space writing about new restaurants opening and the really old restaurants we never want to see close, Axios' Michael Graff writes.

  • But what about those in the middle? The ones that are established but not old, adolescents but not babies.
  • We figured we'd start a series to occasionally highlight them, calling it, "It’s still good."

First up is Intermezzo, which opened in 2007.

Why it's good: Serbian dishes and conversation with the brothers who own it, Djordjè and Branko Avramovic.

Two dishes to try:

  • Sarma: Cabbage rolls with ground beef, rice, bacon, and housemade bread.
  • Piroska: Balkan-style stuffed pizza with ham, mushrooms, mozzarella and ricotta cheeses, sour cream, tomato sauce.
  • Bonus: The banana pudding is sneaky good.

Full story: Intermezzo is still good

3. At least you won't have to worry about lawn care

Rendering: Marc Michaels Interior Design 

A soon-to-be built luxury development called The Regent at Eastover is one of the most expensive condo projects in Charlotte, Axios' Bri Crane writes.

What's happening: The Regent will have 32 residences off Cherokee Road. Construction is slated to start this month and wrap up by May 2023.

  • The condos will range from $1,774,000 to $3,500,000. The HOA fee is $1,424 a month.

That's a lot of money to share a wall with somebody.

Full Axios story: 32 luxury condos coming to Eastover priced up to $3.5M

Fresh openings around town

💪 Time to flex your skills and experience.

  1. Sales manager at Spot Inc.
  2. Assistant manager/social media lead at Swoozies Charlotte.
  3. Parking coordinator at Queens University of Charlotte.
  4. Compliance officer at Consolidated Planning.
  5. Producer, Charlotte Talks at WFAE.
  6. Stair builder/installer at Masterpiece Staircase and Millwork.
  7. Paralegal at Stewart Law, P.A.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a job

4. Speed reads

Photo: AaronP/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

  • Spirit Airlines has been cancelling flights nationwide, including several in Charlotte, because of "operational issues" like staffing shortages and system outages. (CBS News)
  • Two men who were hit and killed by a light rail train this week were holding a memorial service for a relative who'd died in the same spot last week. (Observer)
  • Davidson College president Carol Quillen announced that this will be her last year at the helm. Former Charlotte mayor Anthony Foxx, a Davidson alum, will lead the search for her successor. (Davidson)

5. Eviction moratorium update

People lined up for affordable housing on Freedom Drive in January 2020. Photo: Alvin Jacobs

The Biden administration issued an order Tuesday halting evictions once again, giving thousands of Charlotte renters who are behind on payments temporary relief, Axios' Danielle Chemtob reports.

The new order, which prevents evictions for non-payment until Oct. 3, comes just after previous protections lapsed at the end of July.

  • It does not cover evictions that occurred in the days between the two orders.
  • The moratorium applies to counties with substantial or high rates of COVID-19 transmission. Per CDC data, that includes all but four North Carolina counties (Warren, Bertie, Hertford and Hyde).

In the meantime, millions of dollars in rental assistance are still available in Charlotte. More information.

6. This weekend in Charlotte

Photo: Ted Williams/Axios

Looking for fun things to do in Charlotte this weekend? As usual, Axios' Symphony Webber has you covered. A few notables:

  • Panthers Fan Fest at Bank of America Stadium: 6pm, Friday. Details.
  • The Whiskey Club at The Ballantyne Hotel: 6:30-8pm, Friday. Details.
  • 8th Annual Charlotte African American Festival in Uptown: 10am- 10pm, Saturday. Details.
  • Patio Yoga with CorePower Yoga at Free Will Craft and Vine : 11am-noon, Sunday. Details.

Full Axios guide: 20 things to do this weekend including Panthers Fan Fest and a paint and sip in the park

The loop (we're keeping you in it)

🌀 News you can use from our super cool, very important Axios Charlotte partners.

  • 🎉 Atrium Health Rea Village Medical Plaza is now open near Rea Farms and Waverly. With primary and specialty care in one spot, you won’t find a more convenient provider. Learn more.

7. Mural du jour

The NoDa mural in the works. Photo: Katie Peralta Soloff/Axios

It's Bo time in NoDa.

Bojangles is partnering with local artist Dammit Wesley for a "SO CLUCKIN' GOOD" mural on the side of the Evening Muse building on 36th. It's an ode to the Charlotte chain's new chicken sandwich.

  • "He's bringing our 'So Cluckin' Good" mantra to life in a creative way that we hope will stop people in their tracks," spokesperson Stacey McCray tells Axios.

🦪 Today's National Oyster Day. If you're looking for ways to celebrate, here's our roundup of everyone's favorite aphrodisiac.