It’s Monday, folks. This is Kristen, here with a heads up to Charlotte-area drivers: One person died and others were seriously injured in a Monday morning crash on Interstate 77 southbound between Woodlawn and Tyvola roads. Multiple lanes were closed this morning, and heavy traffic was expected. You can find the latest details here with the Observer’s Jonathan Limehouse. Did you see traffic in the area? Let me know.
Let’s talk about today’s headlines:
New COVID infections are slowing down in Mecklenburg county, and other major COVID trends are moving in the right direction, the Observer’s Devna Bose and Hannah Smoot report.
That’s a good sign, Novant Health infectious disease expert Dr. David Priest said last week, but “we’re not out of this just yet. We can’t be complacent.”
By the numbers:
Mecklenburg is adding about 220 new infections each day now. The average daily infection rate in mid-September was 517 cases.
However, only 56% of Mecklenburg residents are fully vaccinated as of Friday.
“We’ve fallen behind (on vaccinations),” Priest said. “I anticipate it’s going to mean we have continued pockets of outbreaks among unvaccinated individuals going forward.”
Learn more here with Bose and Smoot.
Chick-fil-A is opening up yet another restaurant in the Charlotte region with a new location opening Thursday in Mint Hill.
It’ll initially be open only for drive-thru and pickup. Third-party delivery will be available soon, the Observer’s Catherine Muccigrosso reports.
“As some areas reopen and conditions evolve, you may see some of our restaurants open their dining rooms and other safety practices change,” according to Chick-fil-A’s COVID-19 response page on its website.
As the restaurant opens, the store will surprise 100 “local heroes” with free food for a year. The new location will be open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Friday and 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday.
When Nick Kosir announced this year that he was leaving his job as chief meteorologist at FOX affiliate WJZY-TV in Charlotte, folks wondered what he’d do next. Would he leave news to lean in full-time to his role as a dancing influencer?
In late June, it was revealed that Kosir had left the traditional TV business, but he’d still make forecasts, this time from New York City, for the brand-new Fox Weather. The new service will stream 24/7 when it launches Monday, Oct. 25.
So how are things going for him with the big move? The Observer’s Théoden Janes sat down with Kosir and asked him about:
How New York is treating him
How he felt about leaving traditional TV
How he rates himself as a dancer
... and more
Learn more about Kosir with Janes here.
Things got a little ugly at Bank of America Stadium this past weekend between fans during the Carolina Panthers-Minnesota Vikings game.
Strong words between rivals escalated into a brawl, and a video of it is making its way on Twitter, where it has over 1 million views. Eli Jones, who recorded the fight, told the Observer Monday that the two fans sat behind him and were unpleasant to each other throughout the game. Then, the unpleasantries became more intense with slapping and punching.
“I thought it was pretty crazy,” Jones said. “I’ve been going to Panthers games since I was a little kid, and I’ve seen a ton of fights, but never anything like this.”
Learn more about the situation with the Observer’s Jonathan Limehouse.
Here’s what you need to know today from the world of Queen City sports.
Panthers coach Matt Rhule said Monday that his team’s offense is about to “redefine who we are.”
How will they do that? They’ll take the ball out of quarterback Sam Darnold’s hands more often and put it into the hands of the running backs.
Central midfielder Jordy Alcívar will join Charlotte FC.
Meet ‘Archie.’ He’s an assistant football coach at Ardrey Kell High, and he’s only 17, by Langston Wertz Jr.
“It gives a kid who maybe doesn’t want to play football but wants to be involved with the football team an opportunity and that can lead to opportunities down the road for them,” coach Greg Jachym said.
Find all of our sports reporting here.
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