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County breaks ground for Northern Campus 


Orange County officials gathered at the future site of the Orange County Northern Campus on Thursday for a ceremonial groundbreaking. The Campus, located off of Highway 70 in Hillsborough, will include a replacement Detention Center, Environment and Agriculture Center, and Parks Operations Base. Chair Penny Rich, Vice Chair Renee Price, Commissioners Earl McKee, Sally Greene and Mark Marcoplos, former commissioner Barry Jacobs, Sheriff Charles Blackwood, Hillsborough Mayor Tom Stevens and others participated in the ceremonial groundbreaking.

Photo of Eno River Mill

Commissioners approve project to provide affordable studio space for artists at Eno River Mill

A lack of infrastructure and equitable access are two primary barriers for a healthy creative ecosystem for Orange County artists and residents, but a new project approved by the Orange County Board of Commissioners seeks to remedy those issues.

The Orange County Arts Commission, in partnership with the Gold Family and its partner, Hedgehog Holdings, aims to transform Hillsborough’s historic Eno River Mill into affordable studio space for the creative community. The Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved the concept at its Oct. 15 meeting.

"This will provide space for creators who don’t own a home or don’t have a home studio who really need an affordable place to create and host shows,” said Penny Rich, chair of the Orange County Board of Commissioners. “We are really excited to turn this into an arts space.”

The mill, located in West Hillsborough along the Eno River, opened as a yarn mill in 1897 and operated until 1984. It was bought by the Gold Family in 1988. Hedgehog Holdings became managing partner in 2015. Currently, it houses Weaver Street Market's commissary, the Expedition School, The Cloth Room Events Space and several small businesses.
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Arts and Law workshop sponsored by OCAC

Are you an artist confused about how the law applies to your work? Join the Orange County Arts Commission for Arts + Law: Trademark, Copyright, and Intellectual Property with Ed Timberlake and Erica Rogers. This workshop will answer all your legal questions about copyright, trademark, the public domain, and how to protect your work, such as:

  • Do I have to do anything to copyright my work?
  • What’s the difference between copyright and trademark?
  • Can I use an image/song/article in my work, or do I have to ask permission?
  • What is in the public domain?
  • What can I do to protect others from using my work?
  • What goes in to creating a great trademark? How can choosing the right trademark help me?

Join local lawyers Ed Timberlake of Timberlake Law and Erica Rogers of Ward and Smith, both members of Triangle ArtWorks Law + ArtWorks Resource Group, for a discussion of the legal issues affecting creative work. The lawyers will lead an open discussion on the most recent state of the law, so bring your questions and experiences and gain some insight into how the law might apply in your field.

Holiday Market at Passmore Center on Nov. 2

It's never too early to start holiday shopping. The Friends of the Passmore Center will host a Holiday Market on Saturday, Nov. 2, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Passmore Center (103 Meadowlands Dr., Hillsborough).

Find that unique gift for that "hard to buy for" person on your list, or just shop for yourself. Support local vendors. Entertainment will be provided, and lunch will be available for purchase.

Proceeds from the holiday gift sale will benefit The Friends of the Passmore Center, a volunteer non-profit organization that supports the programs and services provided by the Orange County Department on Aging.

Note: The Passmore Center will close Friday, Nov. 1, at 1 p.m. in preparation for the holiday sale.

Screenwriting class at Orange County Library

Medicare Annual Election Period underway

The Orange County Department on Aging and the N.C. Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) invite Medicare beneficiaries to review their 2020 Medicare Drug Plans and Medicare Advantage Plans.

Your health needs change from year to year, and the benefits and costs of your health plan may change each year, too. That’s why it’s important to evaluate your Medicare choices every year. The Annual Election Period is the time of year when all people with Medicare can change their Medicare health plan and prescription drug coverage for 2020. You may be able to save money, improve your coverage or both.

The Annual Election Period started Oct.15—and lasts seven full weeks—to give you enough time to review and make changes to your Medicare coverage. You will need to make your final selection for next year's Medicare coverage by Dec. 7 to ensure that your coverage can begin without interruption on Jan.1.

For help in Orange County, schedule an appointment with a Certified SHIIP Medicare Counselor to compare your plans for 2020. SHIIP counselors provide FREE, un-biased information and assistance.
Schedule your appointment online at or call 919-245-4274. Appointments are available at the Passmore Center located at 103 Meadowlands Drive in Hillsborough and the Seymour Center located at 2551 Homestead Road in Chapel Hill.

Architectural rendering of Veterans Memorial

Rep. David Price to speak at Veterans Day Ceremony at Orange County Veterans Memorial

Rep. David Price will be the guest speaker at a special ceremony to take place on Veterans Day at the Orange County Veterans Memorial site. The free event will begin at 11 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 11, and is open to the public. The site is located on the grounds of the Southern Human Services Center at 2501 Homestead Drive, Chapel Hill.

For more information about the site, including ways to donate, please visit

Orange County employees sponsoring blood drive

Orange County’s Employee Advocacy Roundtable (EAR) Committee is hosting a Blood Drive on Friday, Nov. 8, from 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Orange County Public Library’s Main Branch (137 W. Margaret Lane in Hillsborough). 

Members of the public may donate. There are still a lot of slots open! To make an appointment, visit and use sponsor code Orange County.

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Census 2020 recruiting for local jobs

In advance of the 2020 Census, the U.S. Census Bureau is recruiting thousands of people for temporary jobs across the country. These positions provide the perfect opportunity to earn some extra income while helping your community.

The results of the 2020 Census will help determine each state’s representation in Congress, as well as how certain funds are spent for schools, hospitals, roads, and more. This is your chance to play a part in history and help ensure that everyone in your community is counted!

Job Qualifications

To be eligible for a 2020 Census job, you must:
  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Have a valid Social Security number.
  • Be a U.S. citizen.
  • Have a valid email address.
  • Complete an application and answer assessment questions. (Some assessment questions are available in Spanish. However, an English proficiency test may also be required.)
  • Be registered with the Selective Service System or have a qualifying exemption, if you are a male born after Dec. 31, 1959.
  • Pass a Census-performed criminal background check and a review of criminal records, including fingerprinting.
  • Commit to completing training.
  • Be available to work flexible hours, which can include days, evenings, and/or weekends.
Most jobs require employees to:
  • Have access to a vehicle and a valid driver’s license, unless public transportation is readily available.
  • Have access to a computer with internet and an email account (to complete training).
The Census Bureau is an equal opportunity employer. For more information, visit their Equal Employment Opportunity page.
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