Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Bull City Strong Day



We celebrate and honor first responders at the DBAP today. May 1st is Bull City Strong Day

The gas explosion in Durham was a tragic event on April 10th, but it could have been 20x worse if not for our courageous Bull City firefighters. As gas was silently building up, they cleared the building that was moments later blown to smithereens. Mission accomplished; mass casualties averted. 

A first responder/first pitch this morning from Durham
firefighter, Acting Captain Phillip "Speedy" Faucette. 
His Engine One, B-Shift was first on the scene when
the Duke St. building exploded April 10th.

Listening to news coverage of yesterday's campus shooting at UNC Charlotte, I’ve repeatedly heard the police described as “running toward the gun fire.” That’s a heavy concept - running toward gun fire...or clearing a building that could be filling with gas. We think of these people as brave and courageous, but there’s a transcendent aspect to this. They’re willing to put their lives on the line for the safety of others. 

We know this intuitively about the men and women serving in our military, and first responders deserve more attention and credit for their sacrificial work. The Durham One Fund is worthy of your support. 


Images from April 10th in downtown Durham,
on Duke Street and from the DBAP.







Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Nashville Songwriters return to Durham



Memorable songs - the tunes we sing in the car or shower - are associated with the superstars who recorded the music. In most cases, however, that song came from the heart and soul of a not-so-famous songwriter - a poet or wordsmith with a guitar. We will celebrate (and enjoy) that talent Friday night April 5th at DPAC as the Nashville Songwriters return to the Bull City. They have penned hits for Blake Shelton, Dierks Bentley, Miley Cyrus, Brad Paisley, Jason Aldean and Rascal Flatts.

Click on image to enlarge.

The show, a benefit concert, is organized by Durham's Jeff Outlaw and his family foundation. We signed on last year because a portion of the proceeds goes to Kidznotes, and some of the kidz have an opportunity to perform with the professionals in one of the country's leading theaters.

Consider this your invitation to join us! And check out the videos...





Thursday, March 14, 2019

Raycom's ACC Sign Off


I get a little misty eyed as Raycom "retires" from the ACC after 37 years. If you are a Tobacco Road hoops fan, Raycom telecasts are a family member. After this conference tourney in Charlotte the new ACC Network will be birthed. Bob Holliday and Jeff Gravley at WRAL stroll down memory lane with a Raycom tribute:

Story & Video from wralSPORTSfan.com
My sports broadcasting and marketing career began with UVA's radio network in 1979 as the Ralph Sampson era commenced in Charlottesville. The company was acquired by Capitol Broadcasting, and I moved to Raleigh in February 1983 as the Wolfpack started its National Championship run. My Brentwood neighbors spray painted our street red and white. Soon thereafter Capitol sent me to Richmond, but I returned to NC in 1991 as Duke University took the NCAA title. It's wonderful to have these big sports stories among your life's historical markers. At Capitol I've had the incredibly good fortune to work with the trifecta of NC State, Duke and UVA on their radio networks and athletic department marketing.


When I was starting out four decades ago, televised games were rare, so commercial breaks were limited. (Imagine that!) In some games, we weren't able to air all of the spots we had sold! But eventually, advertising revenue won the day, and collegiate athletics was transformed into a major media enterprise. In addition to the big bucks, technology now brings us to place where a conference can have its own cable channel and practically every sport can be televised.

I do have a lament, as someone in the local broadcasting business, that all of this programming will move to cable/satellite/Internet. That's hard to swallow, and viewers will probably be surprised (or confused) when the new network premiers in August.


But we move on, and we tip our cap to Raycom. Their vision and platform transformed college sports. What's next? Further conference expansion? Games in Europe or Asia? 3D telecasts? Augmented reality? I'll be OK as long as State plays Carolina and Duke and Wake Forest, as long as the local rivalries endure...on Tobacco Road.