No Shave and Shop with a Cop

Group photo cropped No Shave November resized and compressed

The Gastonia Police Department enjoyed two extraordinarily successful fundraising initiatives in November and December: No Shave November and Shop with a Cop.

No Shave November drew 92 participants and raised about $3,680 for Special Olympics North Carolina, the most popular SONC fundraiser of the year, according to Sgt. Scott Norton, chairman of GPD’s Special Olympics Fundraising Committee. Combined with the Law Enforcement Torch Run and the Burpee-thon, the committee has raised a total of about $9,000 this year for SONC, a record setting year!

In the Shop with a Cop event on the Saturday morning of Dec. 9, 50 happy children went shopping with 55 Gastonia Police officers. Initially plans were to give the children $250 each to spend at Target, but that amount was increased Carmelitha Whitlock Almond and girl resized and compressedto $350 after truly amazing fundraising results! About $18,000 was raised through ornament sales, grants and private donations, according to Amanda Neese, GPD’s Problem Analysis & Research Center director, who also serves as advisor to the Gastonia Police Foundation.

The Gastonia Police Foundation has spearheaded Shop with a Cop for three years and its members include Erin Flitt, president; David Ferguson, vice president; Steve Driscoll, treasurer; Steven Long, secretary; Jay Falls; Chuck Niemeyer; Billy BouKather; David Conner; Sam Robinson; Chris Tolbert; Mike Gibson; Anne Schenk; Wesley Styers; and Capt. Mike Lari, executive director. 

GPD’s Special Olympics Fundraising Committee members include Aaron Wurster, Emily Burr, Laura Burton, Nancy Capistran, Thomas Doby, Cody Edge, Adam Hudson, Stephanie Jamoulis, Daniel Lane, Sgt. Eric Nelson, Jackie Quinley, David Whitlock and Adam Wilson.

TOP PHOTO: Some No Shave November participants gathered recently for a group photo. They are, back row left to right, Officers Phillip Smith and Eddie Lovingood, Chief Robert Helton, Public Works and Utilities Director Matt Bernhardt, City Attorney Ash Smith, Councilman Jim Gallagher, City Manager Michael Peoples, Division Manager of Public Works Dale Denton, and Officer Drew Denton. Front row, left to right, Officers Kevin Putnam, Jason Sarratt, Jordan Reese, and Sgt. Scott Norton.

BOTTOM PHOTO: Officer Carmelitha Whitlock Almond with her shopping companion in the Shop with a Cop event on Dec. 9 at Target.

PREVIOUS PAGE: Officer Dylan Rice with his shopping companion in the Shop with a Cop event at Target.

Dec. 14, 2017

South Fork Sewer groundbreaking

Ground is broken on a groundbreaking sewer project

Construction began in November on the South Fork Phase II Regional Sewer project, a public-private partnership that will eventually replace two aging sewage treatment plants in McAdenville.

Two men and a large sign at groundbreaking ceremonyThe $6 million project will take wastewater from the Pharr Yarns plant and from all municipal customers in McAdenville to Gastonia where it will be treated. A new pump station is being constructed along with more than 2 miles of new sewer pipes. When the project is finished in 12 to 18 months, wastewater from the town and from the textile facility will be pumped through the new pipes to Gastonia. It will be treated at Two Rivers Utilities’ Long Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, the region’s most advanced treatment plant.

Currently, Pharr Yarns has a 50-year-old, privately operated wastewater treatment plant. The Town of McAdenville has a 50-year-old municipal wastewater treatment plant that serves the community’s 680 residents. The two outdated treatment plants in McAdenville will be demolished in 2019.

The project is funded with grants and low-interest loans. Grants from the county, state and economic opportunity sources, including the Golden Leaf Foundation, cover 45 percent of the cost and do not have to be repaid. The remaining $3.3 million is funded by low-income loans from the State of North Carolina.

Officials from the funding agencies, as well as Pharr Yarns, Two Rivers Utilities, Gaston County, the Town of McAdenville and the City of Gastonia joined in the ceremonial groundbreaking on Main Street in McAdenville on Nov. 15, 2017.

Planning for the project began more than a decade ago. It is expected to benefit both the economy and the environment. Both Pharr Yarns, one of the area’s largest employers, and McAdenville will get increased wastewater treatment capacity. That can boost economic development opportunities for both the manufacturer and the town. The project will also improve water quality in the South Fork River. 

Dec. 12, 2017


Gastonia, N.C., just minutes west of Charlotte, is one of the area’s best places to live and work with an ideal combination of location, size and livability. Gastonia is the largest of Gaston County’s 13 municipalities and one of the largest cities in the Charlotte metropolitan area. Selected as an All-America City three times, Gastonia’s desirable quality of life is the result of its beautiful natural surroundings, friendly neighborhoods, responsive government and vibrant business environment.


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Gastonia, NC 28052