Carolina Impact: Season 5

October 28, 2017

Welcome to our fifth season of Carolina Impact, the show that explores the issues, people, and places that impact the heart of our region. Hosted by General Manager Amy Burkett, Carolina Impact airs weekly from October-May on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. and again at 11 p.m. and on Saturdays at 5:30 p.m. Visit season four and seasons 1-3 to watch past episodes.

Amy Burkett in front of Carolina Impact set wearing a dark purple blazer


Carolina Impact (May 15, 2018)

She’s among the first to graduate from a brand new partnership between Tesla and CPCC. We’ll show you how this single mom’s life is changing for the better. Plus the world’s hottest pepper is made in our area. We’ll introduce you to the inventor of the Carolina Reaper. And it’s Blumey Awards season and we’re headed to Cuthbertson High School to take you under the sea.

Click below to watch individual segments or click  to watch the entire show.

TeslaTesla Grads
Tesla is accelerating students to success with the help from CPCC.

Ghost PepperWorld’s Hottest Pepper
The hottest pepper in the world is made right here in Charlotte.

high school musical performersUnder the sea at Cuthbertson
We’ll take you under the sea at Cuthbertson High School.
shag dancersBeach Music’s Shaggers
Dancers of beach music also called the shaggers.


Carolina Impact (May 8, 2018)

HB2 still plays an important role in the political debate and will impact this election year cycle. Could you live in a tiny house? People are right here in Charlotte.  We’ll show you how they do it. Counter protests created powerful images during the Civil Rights era and it all began right here at this counter. Music legends recorded in this Charlotte studio but it was beach music that defined this landmark.

Click below to watch individual segments or click  to watch the entire show.

uptown charlotteHB2 Still Lingers
Why does HB2 still play a role in our election?  The debate and fallout are far from over.

tiny houseTiny House
What would living in a tiny house feel like?  We meet an owner who shows us.

historic lunch counter sit inA Counter Protest
Counter protests created iconic images of the civil rights era and the very first of its kind  was here in North Carolina.
CI-050818-studioeastStudio East
Icons of music recorded here but it’s beach music that has put this Charlotte studio on the map.


Carolina Impact (May 1, 2018)

The number of craft breweries reach new records in our state and there are concerns about a trade war and its impact on you. As an ancient art technique gets a modern day edge, we’ll introduce you to the amazing art form and the artist. From behind the scenes to center stage, a star is born at Ardrey Kell High School. Meet a former police officer turned beach music crooner.

Click below to watch individual segments or click  to watch the entire show.

pouring beerCraft Breweries
As the number of craft breweries across the Carolinas continue to increase, there is concern that a looming trade war could impact business and the customer.

marbling techniqueMarbling
We’ll show you the mesmerizing technique of marbling and what this artist is doing with this ancient technique.

student theater performanceArdrey Kell High School
From behind the scenes to center stage at Ardrey Kell High School.
Summerdaze bandSummer, Sand & Shag Pt.8
A former police officer has taken on a new kind of beat with beach music.


Carolina Impact (April 24, 2018)

Parenting our parents, one remarkable family shares lessons for all of us.   He went from financial disaster to financial advisor and we have his story.  We trace the legacy of one of the most successful beach music bands of all time.

Click below to watch individual segments or click  to watch the entire show.

parentingparentsParenting Our Parents
Parenting our parents is a tough task for anyone.  We share the story of one remarkable family who share their story.  The job is tough they say but wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Website: Centralina Area Agency on Aging
turnlifeTurning Life Around
As a child he saw his family go through financial disaster.  Gary Wright says those days  motivated him and now he’s a financial advisor.  From disaster to advisor and we have his story.

Chairman of the BoardSummer, Sand, & Shag pt. 7
We trace the legacy of one of the most successful beach music bands of all time.

Loray Mill Historical MarkerTextiles in Song
Eighty-nine years ago textile workers walked off their jobs at Loray  Mill in Gastonia.  It was a labor protest that would spread across the country.  As reporter Jeff Sonier tells us, that story is now in song so it’s never forgotten.


Carolina Impact (April 17, 2018)

Meet a CMS educator with a past she wants to share to inspire a new generation. Big productions on small budgets, how do they do it? At risk students were given a free year of college, let’s check in to see how it’s going. Paying tribute to history with the work of a blacksmith, we’ll show you how it’s being done.

Click below to watch individual segments or click  to watch the entire show.

CI-4-17-18-Screenshot-3-1024x511An Educator’s Story
She’s an educator who wants to teach students through her life story. She shares her hardships in hopes of inspiring the next generation.

“highNation Ford High School Production
Big productions on small budget, how do they do it? Nation Ford High School shows us how.

Opportunity Scholars“CPCC
These students got a free college education but how’s it going? We check in with the opportunity scholars program.

teacher helping native Spanish-speaking pre-schoolers learn EnglishLinks to the Past
Linking to the past literally. How a blacksmith is paying tribute to historic families one link at a time.


Carolina Impact (April 10, 2018)

Explore Charlotte-Mecklenburg school districts’ plan to improve segregation and academic achievement. We’ll meet an inspiring judge and learn about his story of economic mobility and meet one of our region’s original beach music groups that have been entertaining us for over 60 years.

Click below to watch individual segments or click on the arrow above to watch the entire show.

school children sitting at their desksEqual Education for All
With over 100,000 students from 183 different countries in Char-Meck Schools, how do we create a homogenous community where each student gets what they need without regard to what they look like and where they are from?

Judge Regan Miller sitting in front of bookcase filled with green law booksA Childhood to Share
Judge Regan Miller uses his childhood experiences when hearing cases from people in situations similar to his growing up.

old black and white photo of The CatalinasSummer, Sand & Shag pt. 6
With hits like “Summertime’s Calling Me” and “Hey Little Girl,” The Catalinas can still fill the room with people singing and shagging.

Website: The Catalinas

teacher helping native Spanish-speaking pre-schoolers learn EnglishSmart Start
Teaching English to native Spanish-speaking children in preschool allows these students to begin kindergarten on the same reading level as native English speaking students.

Website: Smart Start


Carolina Impact: Medical Breakthroughs (April 3, 2018)

Explore pioneering medical breakthroughs changing our lives and meet the doctors behind them. On the front lines of your health are tales of desperation, determination and human triumph-from a safer way to manage pain after surgery to groundbreaking techniques that make surgery unnecessary.

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

Margo Williams practices Tai Chi.Pain-free Living
Trials are currently happening in the Charlotte-area on coping with severe, chronic pain through the use of non-additive medicines.

Back PainAfter removing the disc material, doctors inserted this "cage."
After years of living with debilitating back pain, John Norton opted for a new-type of spine surgery giving him a new lease on life.

photo of Carolina Panther Luke Kuechly on field with Dr. Patrick Connor on the far rightPlatelet Rich Plasma Treatment
Carolina Panthers team doctor, Dr. Patrick Connor, explains PRP treatment along with local celebrity Scott Clark.

prosthetic hand utilizing electrodes and the Starfish ProcedureThe Starfish Procedure
What is possible if two dedicated doctors come together with an idea to help people who have lost fingers use “their fingers” again? For Eddie Chapman, it means he can tie his shoes.


Carolina Impact (March 27, 2018)

Economic Mobility Town Hall

PBS Charlotte hosted a Town Hall to address Charlotte’s economic mobility problem. Panelists included Stephanie Cooper-Lewter; Leading on Opportunity Council, Executive Director, James Ford; Leading on Opportunity Council, Co-Chair, Andrea Smith; Bank of America and Leading on Opportunity Council, Co-Chair, Dr. Kandi Deitemeyer; President, Central Piedmont Community College, Patrick Graham; Charlotte Works, President and CEO, Bob Morgan; Charlotte Chamber, President/CEO, Dr. Clayton Wilcox; Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools Superintendent. Hosted by PBS Charlotte’s General Manager Amy Burkett.

Click here to watch the entire show.


Carolina Impact (February 20, 2018)

What’s that buzzing sound? An athlete brings a new sport to the Queen City while Olympic silver calls Charlotte home. In (Re)Made in the Carolinas: Textile Towns, how has Kannapolis fared since the largest layoff in the state’s history?

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

CI_ReMade_Kannapolis_150000000-towel-sold-markerResearch and Revitalization
After biggest layoff in the state’s history, how is the city of Kannapolis faring since the closing of Cannon Mills? Much better than you might think.

Freedom on IceJereme Gilbert participating in sled hockey
Not one to let an injury slow him down, Jereme Gilbert has introduced a new sport to the area with the Queen City Sled Hockey Club.

Website: Queen City Sled Hockey Club

Figure skater Paul Wylie's silver medal from the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, FranceSilver Skates
Still skating after winning the silver medal in the 1992 Olympics, Paul Wylie is also a coach, a commentator and ambassador.

bee on a clover flowerAll That Buzzing
North Carolina has more beekeepers than any other state and with spring just around the corner, all those bees are going to be very busy.

Website: Mecklenburg County Beekeepers Association


Carolina Impact (February 13, 2018)

Hear how a drug dealer-turned-entrepreneur is now giving others a second chance. Plus, we’ll visit Belmont to learn how this former textile town has transformed itself into a trendy restaurant destination. In our “Summer, Sand and Shag” series, we’ll head to Dallas and Gastonia to visit radio stations that have a legacy of playing classic beach music.

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

Kara Wooten, stuntwomanStuntwoman Karen Wooten
Kara Wooten is a Queens University professor and her other occupation is as close to wide-eyed adventure as one can get.

Tizzerts Bakery cupcakes with white icing and caramel drizzleTizzerts Bakery
Starting a business can be a daunting task but that’s exactly what Charlottean Tiz Benson did 23 years ago in her parents’ kitchen.

Website: Tizzerts

Blair Potts piping chocolatePotts Chocolates
A local chocolatier has found his niche in Charlotte after years in the food business, but Blair Potts is no ordinary chocolate maker.

Website: Potts Chocolates

The Chairman of the Board black-and-white publicity photoBeach Music Hall of Fame
Since the 1940s, there have been lots of beach music bands and shaggers, but only a few have achieved “Hall of Fame” status.

Website: North Carolina Music Hall of Fame


 Carolina Impact (February 6, 2018)

Hear how a drug dealer-turned-entrepreneur is now giving others a second chance. Plus, we’ll visit Belmont to learn how this former textile town has transformed itself into a trendy restaurant destination. In our “Summer, Sand and Shag” series, we’ll head to Dallas and Gastonia to visit radio stations that have a legacy of playing classic beach music.

Click below to watch individual segments oclick here to watch the entire show.

Shaun "Lucky" Corbett cutting hair in his barber shopCuts with Purpose
Shaun “Lucky” Corbett is an entrepreneur who turned his life around from his drug-dealing past and now helps others.

Website: Da Lucky Spot Barbershop

portrail of Nellie, Kevin Jonas' grandmother, hanging in Nellie's Southern Kitchen(Re)Made in the Carolinas:
Belmont leaders, restaurant owners and hungry customers are turning this long-time textile town into a dining destination.

Website: Visit Belmont

Summer, Sand & Shag pt. 4WSGE lettering on outside of building
In this installment of Summer, Sand and Shag, we visit local radio stations that keep shaggers movin’ by playing new and classic beach music on the airwaves.

Website: WSGE and WDZD

advertising sign for "The Pearl Fryar Topiary Garden"Pearl Fryar Topiary Garden
A trip to Bishopville, SC, wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Pearl Fryar’s home where he’s transformed shrubs and trees into whimsical, abstract shapes.

Website: The Pearl Fryar
Topiary Garden



Carolina Impact (January 30, 2018)

On tonight’s Carolina Impact, we’ll find out how a local company plans to use cutting-edge technology to reinvent circuit breakers and why more city dwellers are raising chickens. We’ll also visit a local music club known as a shagger’s paradise.

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

electrical boxATOM Power
A Charlotte company has invented and is about to launch a whole new kind of circuit breaker designed to be smarter, faster and safer.

Website: ATOM Power

Rhode Island red chickenUrban Chickens
More urban dwellers throughout Charlotte are enjoying farm fresh eggs and they don’t have to go far to get them!

Website: Tips for Raising Poultry

Summer, Sand & Shag pt. 3Lynn's Home of the Charlotte Shag Club sign
Over the years, the Carolinas have had a number of “shag” clubs but just one is considered the Queen city’s “shaggers’ paradise.”

Website: Lynn’s Dance Club

white pottery radish jar with stem and grumpy faceCarolina Collectibles This segment is a preview of our Carolinas Collectibles program which airs Feb. 26 on PBS Charlotte!

Website: Everything But The House



Carolina Impact (January 23, 2018)

We’ll report on the dangers of kids having too much access to digital devices and what some parents are doing to limit their children’s access online. Plus, we’ll head to Rock Hill, Fort Mill and Lancaster to find out how South Carolina’s textile towns are preserving their past, and then on to Pilot Mountain for great hiking in the heart of North Carolina’s Yadkin Valley. 

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

children on a tabletManaging Social Media Technology has become a permanent part of our lives, but for children, too much exposure could alter their ability to think and focus.

downtown Ft. MillClosing Textile Mills. Losing Textile Jobs.
In this “Textile Towns: (Re)Made in the Carolinas” segment, we look at how foreign companies are bringing textile mills and jobs back to South Carolina.

Summer, Sand & Shag pt. 2people shagging - dancing
In this second segment of our Summer, Sand & Shag series, we visit the shores of South Carolina where beach music and the Carolina shag have gone hand-in-hand for decades.

Pilot Mountain at sunset
Pilot Mountain From hiking to camping, Pilot Mountain State Park is located in the Yadkin Valley about 80 miles north of Charlotte.

Website: Plan Your Trip



Carolina Impact (January 16, 2018)

On this program, we’ll explore Charlotte’s textile heritage and efforts to preserve some of the cotton mills that remain. Plus, we’ll kick off our new beach music series – “Summer, Sand and Shag,” our One Tank Trip segment takes us to downtown Newton, and we’ll find out why Penland School of Crafts is known as an international center for craft education.

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

water tower for Barnhardt textile mills(Re)Made in the Carolinas
Before Charlotte was a banking town, Charlotte was a textile town. In this segment, we’ll tell you what’s happened to all those textile mills and textile companies in the Queen city.
people shaggingSummer, Sand and Shag
In this first segment of our Summer, Sand & Shag series, we explore some of the bands, people and places that made their mark on Carolina beach music.

Newton, NC water towerDowntown Newton
Newton offers lots for visitors including the Catawba County Museum of History, the Old Post Office Playhouse, and the historic Newton Depot and Museum.

Website: Plan Your Visit

glass blowing at Penland School of CraftsPenland School of Crafts
Considered an international center for craft education, Penland School of Crafts offers a variety of workshops for vocational and avocational craft practitioners.

Website: Penland Workshops



Carolina Impact (November 14, 2017)

We’ll introduce you to a high school teacher makes a lasting impression while inspiring his students to dream big, taking a look at the history and future of Carolina textile towns takes us to downtown Mooresville, and we’ll explore the unique places that add to Lincolnton’s small town charm.

Click below to watch individual segments or click here to watch the entire show.

Chemistry teacher Dr. Jonathan PullinMaking a Difference
Dr. Jonathan Pullin is a chemistry teacher who inspires his students by sharing with them about the challenges he faced as a teen.

black and white footage from the 1938 of downtown MooresvilleRe-made in the Carolinas
While most textile mills across the region have closed, an old mill in Mooresville has been transformed and adds to the small town Southern charm you’ll find here.

Website: Downtown Mooresville

professor teaching students aspects of construction management outside with 2x4sConstruction Jobs
There is high demand for construction industry workers and CPCC offers a variety of programs to prepare students for careers in residential and commercial construction management.

Website: CPCC Construction Management Program

CI507_LincolntonLincolnton’s Worth a Visit
From pottery to antique stores, you’ll find lots of specialty shops and interesting things to do in downtown Lincolnton.

Website: Downtown Lincolnton


Carolina Impact (November 7, 2017)

We’ll highlight a camp that introduces teens to careers in the legal field and a program that gives refurbished skateboards to teens. Our ‘One Tank Trip’ segment takes you on a high-octane adventure for some heart-pounding laps around a NASCAR track.

Click below to watch individual segments in this episode or click here to watch the entire show.

Participating Court Camp students posing behind a judge in the courtroomCourt Camp
Dozens of high school teens interested in the criminal justice field take part in a unique camp at the Mecklenburg County courthouse.

Website: Justice Initiatives

black board with drawings of vegetables and labeledREAL School Gardens
Find out why teachers are taking the classroom outdoors at one local elementary school in Charlotte.

Website: REAL School Gardens

A smiling young boy receives a free skateboardBoards for Bros
Who knew that refurbished skateboards could have such an impact on teens?

Website: Boards for Bros

Driver and passenger prepare for a race lap around the Charlotte Motor SpeedwayPetty Driving Experience
Ready for some heart-pounding laps around Charlotte Motor Speedway? Here’s a way to experience the ultimate thrill ride!

Website: Petty Driving Experience


Carolina Impact (October 31, 2017)

Meet a group that uses baseball to teach teens life lessons. Plus, who inspects the bridges you drive across each day? We’ll take a closer look at a program that trains workers for careers in this high-demand field and our One Tank Trip segment takes us to Kannapolis to visit the NC Music Hall of Fame.

Click below to watch individual segments featured in this episode or click here to watch the entire show.

Carolina Reds baseball playerCarolina Baseball

Carolina Metro Reds uses baseball as a way of teaching teens how to cope with challenges in life.

Website: Charlotte Metro Reds

a fallen bridge3-D Non-destructive Examination
A career in the high-demand field of Non-destructive Examination Technology offers great income potential.

Website: CPCC Non-destructive Examination Program Overview

medals from the Vietnam WarSoldiers With Stories To Tell
Veterans gather weekly at a coffee shop in downtown Mooresville to share stories about their heroic service in Vietnam.

Website: Vietnam in the Carolinas

Randy Travis and Kellie Pickler memorabilia at the NC Music Hall of FameNC Music Hall of Fame
The North Carolina Music Hall of Fame pays tribute to musicians, composers and artists with ties to the state.

Website: NC Music Hall of Fame


Carolina Impact (October 24, 2017)

We’ll introduce you to students in the inaugural class of our 3-D Project; learn about CPCC’s Opportunity Scholarships Program and academic coach Dr. Charles Mitchell; a retired Air Force colonel from Charlotte shares his memories as a POW in Vietnam; and we’ll visit a unique dog park.

Click below to watch individual segments featured in this episode or click here to watch the entire show.

3-D Project graduate Alexys Still from Vance High School3-D Project
PBS Charlotte’s 3-D Project is a four-year commitment that educates and inspires high school students to be a dreamer, doer and create a better destiny.

Website: 3-D Project

CPCC President Kandi DeitemeyerOpportunity Scholarship 
CPCC’s Opportunity Scholarships helps high school graduates obtain a two-year degree in meaningful and well-paying careers.

Website: Opportunity Scholarship

Dr. Charles Mitchell with the Opportunity Scholarship Program at CPCCDr. Charles Mitchell
As an academic coach for the Opportunity Scholarship Program, Dr. Charles Mitchell discusses how he helps students stay focused on their college goals.

Quincy Collins, Vietnam War POWVietnam in the Carolinas
Fifty years after the Vietnam War, some of the images and stories we remember best came from American POWs held hostage in a North Vietnamese prison known as the Hanoi Hilton.

Website: Vietnam in the Carolinas

Winston the MiniDoodle looking cute lying on the floorCharlotte Doodle Romp
Not all dog breeds mix and mingle peacefully and that’s why members of the Charlotte Doodle Romp have come up with a unique way for their pets to socialize and play.

Website: Charlotte Doodle Romp





2017 Charlotte Mayoral Debate (October 17, 2017)

Click below to watch individual topics discussed during the debate or click here to watch the entire debate.

PBS Charlotte and the League of Women Voters of Charlotte Mecklenburg hosted a debate on Oct. 12 with Charlotte mayoral candidates – Vi Lyles (Democrat) and Kenny Smith (Republican). The questions for the 30-minute debate were divided into four general areas: leadership, transportation, protests and police, and taxes.

man on the street being interviewed about leadership to use during the mayoral debateLeadership
We kicked off the debate with a series of questions pertaining to leadership at city hall and the candidates were asked to comment on how their leadership style might differ from current Mayor Jennifer Roberts.

man on the street being interviewed about transportation to use during the mayoral debateTransportation
Our second series of questions dealt with a range of topics pertaining to transportation including toll road projects and funding for future transit projects.

lady on the street being interviewed about protests and police, clip shown during the 2017 Mayoral DebatePolice & Protests
Our third series of questions related to the deadly officer-involved shooting of Keith Lamont Scott which ignited protests in uptown last year over use of force and police transparency. Both candidates were asked to rate the city’s handling of the protests and what the candidates would have done differently if they had been mayor.

man on the street being interviewed about taxes, clip shown during the 2017 Mayoral DebateTaxes
The final series of questions in this debate focused on how tax dollars should be allocated for affordable housing and incentives to lure new businesses.



Carolina Impact (October 10, 2017)

Click below to watch individual segments featured in this episode or click here to watch the entire show.

PFC Ralph Henry Johnson, Vietnam VeteranVietnam in the Carolinas
Clebe McClary and Ralph Johnson were Marines from South Carolina who fought together on the same hill in Vietnam. One came home and one didn’t Hear their stories, read their letters and meet the families who suffered with them.

Website: Vietnam in the Carolinas

Robert Winters at 90 years young is CPCC's oldest graduateCPCC’s Oldest Graduate
Robert Winters, 90, is Central Piedmont Community College’s oldest graduate and he’s still going to class!

Website: Central Piedmont Community College

student attending an aviation campAviation Camps of the Carolinas
The number of people working in the field of aviation is dwindling but one camp aims to introduce teens to aviation careers at an early age.

Website: Aviation Camps of the Carolinas

Filming 'Ask This Old House' in Charlotte with host Scott CaronAsk This Old House
‘Ask This Old House’ is a popular program on PBS and recently the crew visited a Charlotte family.

Website: This Old House


Carolina Impact Special Report: Growing Pains (October 3, 2017)

Learn how the growing Queen City is facing some serious growing pains issues. While the housing boom is affecting almost every street corner, the lack of affordable housing is an issue that needs addressing immediately. With the influx of people moving to Charlotte, what does that do to our schools? Is overcrowding affecting a quality education? And are the city transportation outlets ready to handle this influx?

Click below to watch individual segments featured in this episode or click here to watch the entire show. 

bumper-to-bumper traffic on I-77 outside of HuntersvilleTransportation
According to a report from Apartment List, Charlotte is the top destination for millennials but as more people move here, transportation is going to become even more congested than it is today.

a row of lockers at Waddell Language AcademyEducation
Almost 150,000 students are enrolled in Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools but many of the district’s 176 campuses aren’t equipped to handle the number of students we currently have.

new apartment constructionAffordable Housing
Charlotte has a goal to create 5,000 affordable housing units. Critics say this isn’t enough to keep pace with demand and what should the city do now to plan for future affordable housing needs?

Website: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Strategies for Affordable Housing