Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

A Plan to Preserve Gullah Geechee Culture

Jul 23, 2012

The Gullah Gechee Historical Corridor Commission has released a plan to preserve the endangered culture of slave descendants who worked on rice plantations along the coast.

Pauli Murray
Leoneda Inge

The Durham community celebrated the life of Pauli Murray last evening. But this year the celebration marked the Episcopal Priest’s sainthood.

Krispy Kreme
Leoneda Inge

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts is celebrating its 75th birthday today. That perfectly round original glazed doughnut was born in Winston-Salem and that's where its headquarters remains. Leoneda Inge visited Krispy Kreme workers and fans who say the company's longevity is directly related to its family atmosphere and dedication to the Krispy Kreme brand.

Leoneda Inge: Krispy Kreme has been serenaded, mocked, and adored by people all over the world - just check out YouTube.

Pie Pushers
Leoneda Inge

The Food Truck scene in Durham is credited with helping to grow the area’s image as a top food destination.  Durham officials are now trying to find a way to update its mobile vending code and keep the food truck business vibrant.

Leoneda Inge:  The City of Durham has been working on changes and updates to its 10-year-old mobile vending code for several months.  But when they announced those changes last week, the food truck community cried foul.  Grace Smith got a lot of those complaints.

The City of Durham is taking another look at its mobile vending rules.  And that means Food Trucks.

Leoneda Inge:  Becky Cascio and Mike Hackerd rolled out their Pie Pushers Food Truck about a year ago.  Cascio says it was a big step to make.

Becky Cascio:  My boyfriends a chef, he would love a restaurant but we’re not in a place in our personal lives, or financial or business knowing where we’re going to open a restaurant yet. So we saw this as a kind of stepping stone and Durham as a great spot to do it.

Andy Griffith
Dave DeWitt

Fans are remembering Andy Griffith today. The television icon and North Carolina native died yesterday at his home in Manteo. But it’s in his boyhood home in the foothills that his passing takes on a special meaning. Mount Airy provided the basis for the fictional Mayberry of the Andy Griffith show.

Andy Griffith

Andy Griffith has died. The legendary TV and film actor passed away this morning at his home in Manteo. He was 86. The Dare County Sheriff's Office confirmed the death; no cause was released.

For many, Griffith was North Carolina. He was born in Mount Airy, spent his college days at UNC-Chapel Hill, acted at the Lost Colony in Manteo, and even taught theater in Goldsboro. He introduced the world to the iconic character of a small-town North Carolina sheriff.

Fearrington House
Leoneda Inge

There’s a new food magazine on store shelves focusing on food culture of the South. Food from North Carolina is featured this month. 

Miss North Carolina Museum Exhibit Opens

Jun 23, 2012

The 75th Miss North Carolina will be crowned Saturday. And part of the anniversary bash includes a new exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of History.

Asma Khalid: The exhibit offers a rare glimpse into the pageant's history. It includes evening gowns and swimsuits, of course. But Jennifer Vaden-Barth says the exhibit is more than glitz and glamor. She says it shows folks the pageant is still important today, by focusing on service and talent.

Vince Gill
Durham Performing Arts Center

Country legend Vince Gill plays the Durham Performing Arts Center this Sunday night. After nearly 20 records, 14 Grammys and a truckload of Country Music Association Awards, he's back playing bluegrass again. And Gill tells WUNC's Eric Hodge it feels right to be doing it in North Carolina.

Voters in Greensboro will not see a referendum for a new performing arts center on the November ballot.

Jeff Tiberii: A task force has been studying the feasibility of a new downtown arts venue. They had hoped a $20 million bond referendum would be posed to voters this fall. But the City Council ultimately decided it was not comfortable moving the issue forward. Ross Harris is one of 80 task force members working for the arts center.

44th National Hollerin' Contest

Jun 18, 2012
National Hollerin' Contest
Asma Khalid

Over the weekend, folks in Eastern North Carolina belted out their favorite tunes at the 44th National Hollerin' Contest. Asma Khalid reports from Spivey's Corner on this unusual tradition.

Asma Khalid: Drive about an hour Southeast of Raleigh, and you'll find Spivey's Corner. It's a tiny town, no post-office, one stop-light. But it's claim to fame is hollerin'. Hollerin' is not yodeling, and it's not calling in the hogs. Folks in Spivey's Corner say hollerin' was a form of communication used in Sampson county long before phones.

UNC Study: More People Turning Into Couch Potatoes

Jun 15, 2012

New research from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill finds physical fitness around the globe is plummetting.

Asma Khalid: Sure, we may already know a lot of us Americans are overweight. But, the problems aren't limited to our borders. This study finds a growing number of people in the U.K., Brazil, India and China are less active than a generation ago.  Barry Popkin is a nutrition professor at UNC and a co-author of the report.

A new report is detailing the economic impact of arts in North Carolina.

Jeff Tiberii: The national study concludes nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in the state had a financial impact of 1.24 billion dollars during the 2010 fiscal year. That ‘impact’ figure includes ticket purchases, estimates on money spent before and after the show, and the salaries art professionals earn. Catherine Heitz New is with the Arts Concil of Forsyth County:


The dB's are back. This week, the legendary band releases Falling off the Sky. It's their first studio album in more than 30 years. The dBs began life in the late 70s in New York after growing up in Winston Salem. After several critically acclaimed records, members of the band went their separate ways -- but the music they recorded continued to influence fellow musicians.

Lavinia "Big Boss" Hensley
Leoneda Inge

The current state of the economy has shaken up countless careers, especially if you were in the housing construction business. But in a neighborhood outside High Point, one woman who used to build homes now uses her own home as a bakery. She said it was time to do the one thing she knew best and Big Boss Baking Company was born. Leoneda Inge has this report for our series, “Breaking into the Food Biz.”

Lavinia Hensley:  Hey come on in, how are you. You found us. See you weren’t too far.
Leoneda Inge: I know. I found it.

Doc Watson
Sugar Hill Records

Musician Doc Watson died on Tuesday. The 89 year old guitarist from Deep Gap, North Carolina, had been in a Winston-Salem hospital recovering from a fall and other ailments. Watson was an iconic North Carolina musician, he broke new ground in bluegrass, country and gospel. His legacy has fueled a generation of musicians.

Doc Watson: In the summer of 1934, papa made my first musical instrument, a little five string fretless banjo and he played me a tune on it.

Leoneda Inge

Durham has a pretty tasty reputation when it comes to food.  Nationally ranked restaurants and a burgeoning food truck scene keeps food-types buzzing.  But moving in between the ice cream and burger trucks is a fresh food truck called LoMo Market.  The idea is to bring fresh food to busy residents who can afford it but may not have time to get to the store.  Leoneda Inge has the first report for our series, “Breaking into the Food Biz.”

North Carolina will host the best in Bluegrass music in a capital city festival starting next year.

Magnolia Grill Closing

May 3, 2012
Karen and Ben Barker

One of the most well-respected restaurants in the Triangle is closing its doors. Magnolia Grill in Durham has been a culinary powerhouse for 25 years.

Leoneda Inge:  Most people got the word yesterday that the award-winning Magnolia Grill is closing its kitchen for good.  Nick Powell says his family has never had a bad dish at Magnolia Grill.

Nick Powell:  We’re pretty sad to see it go.  Emilee gasped when she read the news.

Emilee Powell:  It’s one of our favorite restaurants.

In November of 2008 the Durham Performing Arts Center opened its doors to Broadway performances, and big name musical acts. By virtually all accounts D-PAC has been a success, welcoming more visitors and earning more money than many had expected. Now Greensboro is considering following suit. Residents, politicians and leaders of the arts community are discussing G-PAC. Supporters say the proposed 50 million dollar facility would boost the local economy and make the city a better place to live. But there are many questions: such as location, parking and would voters approve it?

The Full Frame Documentary Film Festival begins today. Lovers of non-fiction cinema travel from all over the world to Durham to view this juried competition.

Leoneda Inge:  This is Full Frame’s 15th year.  As many as 12-hundred documentaries pour in from every corner of the globe.  Just over 100 films will be shown during the festival.  That’s a lot of films, ranging from “The Invisible War,” about rape in the military, to a family’s quest to eat local in Alabama.

Kathleen Cleaver Source
Southern Oral History Program

In the final installment of Voices for Civil Rights, we hear some reflections on the Civil Rights Movement as a whole.

Kathleen Cleaver describes a loss in intensity in the movement over the years, while Ruby Sales frames the movement as part of a larger fight for human dignity. Finally, we return to Jamila Jones, who recalls how as a child she struggled to understand the segregation on her daily bus ride.

El Anatsui

A new exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Art offers visitors an unprecedented chance to follow the 40 year career of one of Africa’s most celebrated contemporary artists.

In the third installment of our series Voices for Civil Rights, hosted by Eric Hodge, Seth Kotch shares excerpts of two oral histories conducted by the Southern Oral History Program at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Freeman Hrabowski describes a clash with his parents over joining the Civil Rights movement in Alabama, when he was just twelve years old.