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  • About Carrboro

    Directly west of Chapel Hill in the Piedmont of North Carolina, the progressive 4.25 square mile Town of Carrboro is home to 16,000 residents.

    Carrboro started in 1882 as West End, a place for a railroad station to service UNC travelers. Carrboro's growth into a distinct town began with the 1898 addition of Alberta, Tom Lloyd's cotton mill. At the time the town was known as Venable, named after the UNC President Francis P. Venable. The town's name changed to Carrboro in 1914 after Julian Carr purchased the mill from Lloyd.

    Alberta still stands but is now known as the home of Carr Mill Mall. Saved by Carrboro residents from demolition in 1975, Carr Mill serves as the town's focal point. Since its rescue, Carr Mill Mall has expanded to include Weaver Street Market, a community-owned and community-operated natural foods store, and the two floors of office spaces above it. The Mall houses many unique small businesses run by local residents.

    While it is home to many UNC students and employees and shares a nationally-renowned public school system with Chapel Hill, Carrboro has developed its own distinct identity since its days as West End.

    The town's commitment to save Carr Mill Mall reflects Carrboro's public commitment to smart growth and progressive living. Lovingly restored older mill homes and public buildings are the rule, not the exception. The visionary spirit of Carrboro residents, expressed in their continued resistance to the plight of suburban sprawl, remains true to the town's village character.

    What particularly distinguishes North Carolina's most densely populated town is its dedication to the arts.

    Carrboro may be one of America's most musically gifted towns; it seems more the rule than the exception that a given resident is also a skilled musician. Nationally recognized acts regularly fill the bill at the legendary Cat's Cradle. Carrboro is home to a number of other live music venues, several recording studios, and the annual Carrboro Music Festival.

    Not to be outdone by the musicians, local artist display their wares in galleries, open studio shows and area businesses. On every other Sunday between April and December, local artists, craftsmen, and antique dealers come together at the Carrboro Sunday Market. The Carrboro ArtsCenter offers more than 300 classes each year and is home to two separate performance theaters, a dance studio and gallery.

    Carrboro recently converted a beautiful old church in the center of town and dubbed it the Carrboro Century Center. The centerpiece of the Century Center, Century Hall, with its stunning grand piano and hardwood floors, will be the home of the 2004 Carrboro Poetry Festival.

    While the triangle of Carr Mill Mall, Weaver Street Market, and the Carrboro Century Center serve as the heart of Carrboro's geography and spirit, the numerous surrounding restaurants, cafes, and watering holes keep Carrboro pumping. Panzanella, Spotted Dog, Elmo's Diner, Tyler's, The Speakeasy, Open Eye Cafe, Acme, Orange County Social Club, Jade Palace, Armadillo Grill, Akai Hana, Amante, Bandito's, and Carrburritos are all within a short walk of the town's center.

    Last Updated Sunday, March 14 2004 @ 04:31 PM|12,214 Hits View Printable Version

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