Monthly Archive for September, 2004

Fridays After 5: Dead, or Changing?

In June, after the amphitheater was turned over to Coran Capshaw, it was up in the air whether Fridays after 5 would continue. An attempt was made to clear things up, but all that was known that some sort of a free weekly event would continue to happen. After all, why wouldn’t Capshaw want to sell tickets to see prime performers on Friday nights? Now the folks at Charlottesville Downtown Foundation, the creators and operators of the concert series, have declared Friday’s concert to be “the last Fridays After 5 as we know it.” Councilor Blake Caravati says that Fridays isn’t ending, but that the city is just going to “take it to the next level,” while a Capshaw rep. promises that there will be a charitable concert every Friday, although the contract makes no such promise. CDF isn’t so sure that Caravati and Capshaw are going to come through, and so they’re looking for a new venue to carry on the event. In short, nobody’s knows what’s going on. Lisa Provence has the story in this week’s Hook.

Area Income Dropping

While unemployment in Central Virginia may be pleasantly-low, particularly when compared to Southside, things are still slumping in ways that pure employment numbers don’t capture. 3,100 jobs were lost from ’98-’03 (largely thanks to NAFTA), with notable mass-layoffs including Comdial and Technicolor. Most of those people found jobs, but instead of making $35k performing skilled steps in the manufacturing process or managing the assembly line, they’re welcoming people to Wal-Mart. A just-completed study found that the job growth of the last few years has occurred in jobs that pay 40% less than the jobs that were lost. The result? The rich are just as rich as always, while more and more people are becoming poor. Reed Williams has the story in today’s Progress.

This Just In: Serial Rapist Black

Thanks to a $1,000 DNA analysis, DNAPrint Genomics has determined that the serial rapist is — get this — a black man. In an interview, a representative from the company, which was hired by the Charlottesville police, said that this shows that “this guy’s not Caucasian or East Asian or a guy from Mexico.” That clears that up. Reed Williams has the story in the Progress.

Students Arrested for Field Trip

Last week, a UVa fiction teacher took 23 students on a field trip to the abandoned Blue Ridge Hospital, by way of inspiration. As the hospital is owned by UVa, they figured they were OK. Not so: a UVa Foundation representative had them arrested for trespassing. Hilarity ensued. Ultimately, UVa persuaded commonwealth’s attorney Jim Camblos to drop the charges, and the students got off with $66 in court fines apiece. Kate Andrews has the story in today’s Progress.

Reinike Abuses R911 System

One-time Republican City Council candidate Ann Reinicke recently used her access to the city’s reverse 911 system, which automatically calls city residents to alert them to emergencies, to encourage 3,000 residents to attend the Election Study Task Force public hearings that have been taking place throughout the city. Reinicke and other local Republicans favor an overhaul of the electoral system, which they believe would give them a leg up in City Council elections. Though she is authorized to use the City Watch Automated Voice Service System, it’s not intended for such purposes, and she neither sought nor received permission from the city to do so. Reinicke is, characteristically, not talking to the media. John Yellig has the story in today’s Progress.



You are currently browsing the weblog archives for the month September, 2004.