City of Salisbury looking for vendors for College Night Out

By David Whisenant Published: Jul. 18, 2022 at 6:32 AM EDT

The event is happening on August 18 at Bell Tower Green Park.(David Whisenant-WBTV)

SALISBURY, N.C. (WBTV) – The City of Salisbury and Downtown Salisbury, Inc., are looking for vendors for the College Night Out event happening at the Bell Tower Green Park in August.

Th event is scheduled for Thursday, August 18 from 5 to 9 p.m. During College Night Out, Downtown Salisbury welcomes and invites students from our local colleges (Livingstone, Hood Theological Seminary, Catawba and Rowan-Cabarrus Community College) and new Rowan-Salisbury School System teachers out for games, activities, food, networking and so much more.

This year College Night Out is accepting vendors. Organizers say it’s not only is this a great way to introduce college students and new educators to Downtown Salisbury shops, restaurants and entertainment, it is a fantastic opportunity to give them access to the many resources available from Downtown partners, such as options for banking, health, culture, arts, employment and volunteerism.

Anyone interested in setting up at College Night Out, please click on the following link, https://bit.ly/3ut3Kzd to complete the College Night Out Vendor Application form. Space is limited and on a first come, first serve basis. Applications are due by Friday, July 22nd. Staff will confirm vendor acceptance via email listed on the application form by Tuesday, July 26th.

Vendors are encouraged to bring any information regarding employment, internship or volunteerism opportunities.

Cost for Vendor space (Map of MSD attached) –

  • Sponsors – No Fee
  • Businesses outside of the Municipal Service District (MSD) – $75
  • Businesses inside the Municipal Service District (MSD) – $25

Businesses are welcome to split booth space with other businesses and the cost will remain the same as above.

Saturday kids’ parade open to public

By Elisabeth Strillacci

Parade Map Route
Graphic by Andy Mooney, Salisbury Post

SALISBURY — Local children are invited to join a kids’ parade through downtown Saturday morning starting at 10 a.m.

Bring bikes, tricycles, wagons and strollers decorated in red, white and blue for a celebration. Prizes will be awarded for best decorated and best dressed.

Participants, who are not required to register, will kick off the walk with the pledge of allegiance by the flag pole at city hall, and historical figures, such as Daniel Boone, will greet children along the way.

The parade is for all ages and even for pets, though children age 6 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. No motorized vehicles are permitted.

The parade will begin at the back parking lot of city hall, 217 S. Main St. and conclude at the corner of Fisher and South Main streets.

New Hallmark Movie Filming in Historic North Carolina City

Salisbury is providing the backdrop for a new feel-good film.

Meghan Overdeep, Senior Staff Writer
By Meghan Overdeep Updated June 29, 2022 (Southern Living)
CREDIT: THE WASHINGTON POST/GETTY IMAGES
CREDIT: THE WASHINGTON POST/GETTY IMAGES

Hallmark is currently filming a new movie in charming Salisbury, North Carolina.  

Production on the forthcoming drama called To Her With Love kicked off this week. It’s reportedly the first movie to film in the city known as the birthplace of Cheerwine since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. 

According to Queen City News, filming will take place across the city— inside Salisbury High School, in the downtown area, and on the 400 block of Fulton Street—through Friday. 

“I think that this being a Hallmark movie makes it more of a quaint feel, and so they wanted more of a quaint location. And I think Salisbury definitely serves that,” Salisbury communications director Linda McElroy told the local news outlet.

The 65-person production hired a few locals as production assistants, and even put out a casting call for extras. 

“When I heard the movie, it got all of us excited,” an extra named Paula told Queen City News. “Even the mail lady.”

Hallmark has yet to share details on the movie, but we’ll provide updates as we get them!

‘New dynamism to downtown’: Salisbury social district debuts Friday

By Ben Stansell

Map of the new downtown social district. Graphic by Andy Mooney, Salisbury Post.

SALISBURY — After months of discussion and preparation, Downtown Salisbury’s new social district will start on Friday.

The district will allow consumers to purchase alcoholic beverages from state-licensed businesses and restaurants and walk around a designated area downtown. Drinks must be carried in specially-marked cups. 

“We are optimistic about the impact of the (district) on downtown businesses and the community in general,” said Sada Stewart Troutman, director of Downtown Salisbury Inc. “As other communities who have implemented a social district have seen, we hope this is an opportunity to bring new dynamism to downtown.

The boundaries of the social district, which generally include several city blocks around the heart of downtown, will be marked with signs. A boundary map also is available on the Downtown Salisbury website, and accessed via the QR code on all social district signs. Drinks must be consumed within the social district and before entering any vehicle.

Bell Tower Green is included in the social district, but the park does play by slightly different rules. Visitors may stroll within the district Monday through Sunday between noon and midnight but within Bell Tower Green park on Monday through Sunday, as follows:

• Nov. 1 through March 1: between 5 p.m. and park closing

• March 2 through Oct. 31: between 6 p.m. and park closing

City staff has installed social district boundary signs in downtown. The social district will allow consumers to walk around certain parts of downtown with special-marked cups containing alcoholic beverages.

Picture of Social District Sign
City staff has installed social district boundary signs in downtown. The social district will allow consumers to walk around certain parts of downtown with special-marked cups containing alcoholic beverages. Ben Stansell/Salisbury Post

Alcoholic beverages may not be consumed or sold during and within the boundary of a public street festival, during a special event sponsored by the City of Salisbury, or within the boundary of Bell Tower Green park when the event is permitted and held per city ordinance. This does not prohibit the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages within Bell Tower Green park pursuant to a properly licensed and permitted event.

Downtown Salisbury Inc. has been leading the push to create the district since the state legislature last year passed a bill allowing for the districts in an effort to bring business back downtown after the COVID-19 pandemic. Kannapolis was quick to establish a social district of its own in the fall and other towns and cities have followed suit.

Stewart Troutman said the organization is “thrilled that Downtown Salisbury is able to have a social district, and see this as a privilege that will enhance the experience of our downtown for residents, visitors and business owners.”

The Salisbury City Council endorsed the district after Downtown Salisbury Inc. held several public input and education sessions with stakeholders and Salisbury residents.

“With the preparation we have done, we expect the (social district) to be a positive environment for all participants, and thank everyone in advance for working with Downtown Salisbury as we get this off the ground,” Stewart Troutman said.

There are 12 business currently signed on to participate in the district, including La Cava, Carpe Vinum 121, New Sarum Brewing, Sweet Meadow Cafe, Go Burrito, Salty Caper, Shug’s, Shuckin’ Shack, City Tavern, Bangkok Downtown, The Fish Bowl and Bottle and Can.

Other businesses will allow alcoholic drinks in their stores, but will not sell them. Participating businesses, including retailers that allow drinks into their stores, will feature a “Downtown Salisbury Social District” sticker at the door/window.

Stewart Troutman expects the list of participants to grow over time.

“We have new businesses in the pipeline who have already said they are excited to participate when they open, and some existing businesses who may join after they are able to educate staff or assess the operation of the district, so I do think more will begin to participate as time goes on,” she said.

Chris Ostle, co-owner of The Fish Bowl, said the bar is approaching the social district with caution. At least for the time being, Ostle said The Fish Bowl will only offer social district drinks on certain days.

Paul Bardinas, co-owner of Carpe Vinum 121, doesn’t expect the new social district to have a major impact on the fine-dining restaurant, but he does think it will “liven up downtown a bit” and provide a boost to other restaurants and bars. Bardinas said the district could prove to be “great for our community” by promoting more downtown foot traffic.

Violations of social district rules should be reported to the Salisbury Police Department at 911.

For more information, lists of participating businesses and rules and regulations, go to downtownsalisburync.com/socialdistrict.

History on Tap: Visitors get chance to see progress on The Salisbury renovation

By Elisabeth Strillacci

SALISBURY — The Historic Salisbury Foundation welcomed the return of the History on Tap (H.O.T.) series Thursday when more than 300 people toured the former Southern Bell building on West Council .

The series, in its eighth year, entails an open house at a historic building or structure the fourth or last Thursday of June, July and August. Attendees sample cold beer from New Sarum while getting an insider’s view of some of the city’s historic spots.

The first tour site of the summer, The Salisbury, is currently in the midst of renovation into 12 apartments from the former Southern Bell phone company building. Constructed in the late 1920s, the three-story building at 121 W. Council St. had not been touched since 1985, but Josh Barnhardt, who had been hearing the stories of the building’s former glory from his grandmother, Edith Thompson, saw more than a little worth salvaging. Thompson was a switchboard operator at Southern Bell starting in the 1940s, and would often regale her family with stories from her time in the beautiful art deco building.

With the renovations, all the essentials, such as electrical, plumbing and flooring are new, but the architectural details that set the building apart remain. Six apartments are one-bedroom units and six have two bedrooms. The historic outside of the building along with numerous interior details are being restored or maintained, making it an ideal stop on the summer tour.

“Whitney Wallace was the instigator of History on Tap in the beginning,” noted Sherry Beck of the Historic Salisbury Foundation. “One of our goals as an organization is to become more diverse in our events, reaching out and bringing in families and the wider community. And we take a lot of pride in finding locations that show off some of our local historic structures and learn about the history of our town.”

Renovation of The Salisbury, as it was originally named, began on the third floor and the first tenants were originally scheduled to move in June 1, but as with nearly all ongoing construction right now, delivery of materials, along with a few other issues, have caused delays.

Jimmy and Linda Thompson, who have lived in Rowan County all of their lives, will be two of the first tenants, having signed a lease on the first apartment at the top of the stairs on the third floor. Their living room windows look out on the front lawn of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, which Jimmy said was just what he wanted.

“He absolutely loves this view,” Linda said. The couple currently live on High Rock Lake in Davidson County, but have missed living downtown, where they can walk to everything. They were the first people to purchase a unit in the Kress Building, and Linda said living there taught them everything they did — and did not — want in moving back downtown.

“We wanted a place to park, and an outdoor space of some kind,” she said. The Salisbury will have a rooftop community gathering space, and a designated parking lot just beside the building. “It hit all the things we wanted.” She said they anticipate in four to five years, they will sell the lake house and live solely in the Salisbury. She was chatting with friends during the open house about decorating in art deco style to coordinate the decor in communal areas and to work with the style of the building, though she said she is trying to be patient as the new move-in  date of Sept. 1.

Kimberly Steig of Historic Salisbury said the next open house is scheduled for July 28 at The Old Textile Products Building at 121 N. Main St., and is nearly full already, so anyone interested should register quickly. Free registration is available from the website at HistoricSalisbury.org.

“We have quite a few people who have figured out that we fill up fast and they’ve gone ahead and registered for all three,” she said. “We didn’t quite anticipate how fast this would fill, but we’re certainly thrilled that so many people are coming out!”

‘A second round of your talents’: Outgoing interim city manager Brian Hiatt given key to city

By Ben Stansell

SALISBURY — When the City of Salisbury began searching for an interim city manager to fill the gap after Lane Bailey’s retirement at the end of last year, Mayor Pro Tem Tamara Sheffield knew just the person for the job.

“I was like, ‘Please let it be Brian. Please let it be Brian,’” Sheffield said, recounting the moment during the city council meeting on Tuesday night.

Sheffield was referring to Brian Hiatt, who served as Salisbury’s interim community planning director for five months in 2018 after retiring following a 19-year tenure as city manager for Concord.

Sheffield got her wish.

Hiatt was brought back for the interim job and served as city manager until Jim Greene Jr. took the helm in May. When Hiatt started in the temporary role, he told the Post he wanted to “keep the car in the road” until the city brought in a permanent replacement.

According to the members of the city council, he did more than that.

“One of the things that a lot of public servants like to say or corporate leaders like to say is they like to leave a place better than when they found it, and you’ve done that twice,” Council Member David Post said. “We’re all grateful for that.”

For his two stints with Salisbury, Mayor Karen Alexander and city council on Tuesday bestowed Hiatt with a key to the city.

“Thank you for giving us a second round of your talents,” Sheffield said.

Hiatt said this is the first time he’s received a key to the city, despite spending about 42 years in local government.

“I am certainly honored and humbled by all of this,” Hiatt said. “When you leave an organization full of great public servants you will miss them.”

Greene, who has known Hiatt for more than two decades and worked with him at the City of Concord, said Hiatt is “a great man with the highest of ethical standards and a big heart.”

City Attorney Graham Corriher spoke highly of Hiatt’s leadership. “It’s been very important during this period of growth that we’ve experienced to have somebody that’s experienced that growth from where he came from in Concord to lead the ship. And not just to keep it in the road as he claimed to do, but solve the problems that needed solving.”

Council Members Anthony Smith and Harry McLaughlin, both serving their first terms on council, also thanked Hiatt for his guidance.

“You meet people and they have the wisdom to do things in their body, like it’s just a part of them,” Smith said. “I appreciate the way you’ve brought that wisdom to, especially those of us who are new to this work because honestly it’s been like drinking from a fire hydrant for the past couple of months.”

“Brian was able to come in and take the time and really rein you in and help you with that transition from being in campaign to being a city council member,” said McLaughlin, who added that he’s particularly grateful for Hiatt’s patience.

Leaving Salisbury for a second time, Hiatt said the city is “in good hands.”

“You’ve hired an excellent city manager, and I know because I’ve seen him.”

City of Salisbury hosts open house on Fisher Street bridge possibilities

By Madeline Wagoner

SALISBURY — Community members gathered Thursday in City Hall for an interactive discussion with planning and public works officials for a presentation on the future of the East Fisher Street bridge.

According to Community Planning Director Hannah Jacobson, what people have to say about the options will be presented to City Council in August to show how they would like to move forward with reviving the historic bridge.

Poster boards outlined the ideas and goals put together by the city, including reopening the bridge for vehicular traffic in two years or turning it into a pedestrian bridge with added design features as a safe gateway to downtown. Posters had blank squares for people to place a sticker under the option they liked best, including what additions they would like to see in the finished product.

Public Works Director Craig Powers said the pedestrian option could open more opportunities for tourism in Salisbury as it would renovate the bridge while offering an option to walk downtown to support businesses.

“Bridge permits take a long time to obtain,” he said. “As far as repairing the bridge, a vehicular bridge would require more frequent maintenance. If you have bikes and people, it wouldn’t need it as often.”

A pedestrian bridge could also include bench seating, public art, festive/colored lights, planters and greenery, educational signs and historic markers, ballards and painted pathways. New lights got the most votes, while painted pathways only had one.

Jacobson said ultimately City Council members will have the last word for the bridge’s future, but the community can help them make the best decision.

Another poster board was designated for public comments on how closing the bridge has affected residents. Some people said it helped ease traffic on Fisher Street; others noted it has been difficult to make deliveries and that East Bank Street traffic has built up.

Acey Worthy, a property owner on East Bank Street, said it wouldn’t bring in tourism like the city is hoping due to lack of parking and who is coming to the area.

“If a mom wanted to take her daughter to the bridge, she’d have to park in front of Autozone,” he said. “To get to downtown, she’s not going to cross this bridge.”

While voting for either option was split down the middle, with eight votes on each proposed idea, several people voiced that they would like to see the bridge transformed for vehicular purposes.

“The idea is great, but as it’s gone on, it’s only gotten worse and worse,” said Jeremy Tatum, another property owner on East Bank Street. “I see the light at the end of the tunnel, but is there really a light, or will we be hitting a brick wall?”

A community member wrote on the comment poster that making it a pedestrian bridge would help with safety, by limiting the streets with cars.

Planning and public works officials also included estimated values to the poster board, where repairing the bridge for vehicles would cost an estimated $900,000 and the pedestrian option would cost an estimated $150,000 to $200,000. For driving, it would take two years to reopen; the walking and biking option would take an estimated 18 months. The I-beams would eventually need to be repaired, even if made into a pedestrian walkway.

“These beams have to be custom-made into almost a C-shape to fit the bridge,” Powers said.

Once City Council makes a decision, planning and public works will apply for grants and gather estimates before moving forward.

Hallmark movie to be filmed in Salisbury next week

Road closures, detours expected along South Fulton, West Horah, Main, and Fisher streets.

By David Whisenant

SALISBURY, N.C. (WBTV) – A made-for-TV Hallmark movie is set to film in various locations in Salisbury next week, according to the City of Salisbury.

The production may affect travel near Salisbury High School, homes along the 400 block of South Fulton Street, and the 100 block of East Fisher Street, Tuesday, June 28 through Friday, July 1. Intermittent road closures also may occur on Saturday, July 2 along South Fulton Street. Detour signage will be in place.

Expected road closures and/or traffic shifts include:

Tuesday, June 28

400 Block of South Fulton Street from West Monroe to West Horah Streets

300 block of West Horah Street from South Fulton to South Jackson Streets

Wednesday, June 29 (and possibly Saturday, July 2)

400 Block of South Fulton Street from West Monroe to West Horah Streets

300 block of West Horah Streets from South Fulton to South Jackson Streets

Friday, July 1

200 block of South Main Street from Bank to Fisher Streets

100 block of East Fisher Street from South Main to South Lee Streets

Residents, merchants and downtown visitors will have access to homes and businesses during filming.

An air date for the movie is unknown.

Salisbury’s Social District debuts Friday, July 1

SALISBURY, N.C. (Thursday, June 23, 2022) – The Downtown Salisbury Social District (DSSD) becomes official Friday, July 1, after months of preparation, discussion, merchant information sessions and final City Council approval.

               A social district is a designated area in which alcoholic beverages are allowed to be carried in open containers on the street. Salisbury’s Social District follows the passing of the Bring Business Back to Downtown Bill by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission, which aims to increase economic vitality in North Carolina downtowns.

               Beginning Friday, July 1, downtown visitors will be able to purchase an alcoholic beverage in a special DSSD cup from an ABC-permitted, participating business. Participating businesses, including retailers that allow drinks into their stores, will feature a “Downtown Salisbury Social District” sticker at the door/window.

               DSSD boundary signs will be posted along the route over the next few days. A boundary map also is available on the Downtown Salisbury website, and accessed via the QR code on all social district signs. Drinks must be consumed within the social district and before entering any vehicle.

               Visitors may stroll within the district Monday through Sunday between noon and midnight. Within Bell Tower Green Park, Monday through Sunday, as follows:

  • November 1 through March 1: between 5 p.m. and park closing
  • March 2 through October 31: between 6 p.m. and park closing

               Alcoholic beverages may not be consumed or sold during and within the boundary of a public street festival, during a special event sponsored by the City of Salisbury, or within the boundary of Bell Tower Green Park when the event is permitted and held per city ordinance. This does not prohibit the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages within Bell Tower Green Park pursuant to a properly licensed and permitted event.

               Violations of social district rules should be reported to the Salisbury Police Department at 911.

               For more information, lists of participating businesses and rules and regulations, visit downtownsalisburync.com/socialdistrict.

As a Main Street America™ accredited program, Downtown Salisbury is a recognized leading program among the national network of more than 1,200 neighborhoods and communities who share both a commitment to creating high-quality places and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development. All Main Street America™ accredited programs meet a set of National Accreditation Standards of Performance as outlined by Main Street America. Please visit us on the web at www.downtownsalisburync.com.

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Downtown Salisbury Social District Goes Into Effect July 1st

June 23, 2022  Marvin BeachSamantha Gilstrap

Beginning Friday, visitors to downtown Salisbury can walk around with their alcoholic beverage of choice thanks to the execution of a new social district.

The Downtown Salisbury Social District (DSSD) becomes official Friday, July 1st, after months of preparation, discussion, merchant information sessions and final City Council approval.

A social district is designated area in which alcoholic beverages are allowed to be carried in open containers on the street.

Salisbury’s Social District follows the passing of the Bring Business Back to Downtown Bill by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission, which officials say aims to increase economic vitality in downtowns across North Carolina.

In the new social district, visitors will be able to buy an alcoholic beverage in a special DSSD cup from an ABC-permitted, participating business.

Participating businesses, including retailers that allow drinks into their stores, will feature a “Downtown Salisbury Social District” sticker at the door/window, according to a news release.

Officials say DSSD boundary signs will be posted along the route over the next few days.

A boundary map also is available on the Downtown Salisbury website, and accessed via the QR code on all social district signs.

Officials say drinks must be consumed within the social district and before entering any vehicle.

Visitors may stroll within the district Monday through Sunday between 12 p.m. and 12 a.m., and within Bell Tower Green Park, Monday through Sunday, as follows:

  • November 1st through March 1st: between 5 p.m. and park closing.
  • March 2nd through October 31st: between 6 p.m. and park closing.

Officials say alcoholic beverages may not be consumed or sold during and within the boundary of a public street festival, during a special event sponsored by the City of Salisbury, or within the boundary of Bell Tower Green Park when the event is permitted and held per city ordinance.

This does not prohibit the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages within Bell Tower Green Park pursuant to a properly licensed and permitted event, according to a news release.

Click here for more information on rules and regulations for The Downtown Salisbury Social District.

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