Earth festival: Concord, Kannapolis and Cabarrus County will host the Viva Verde Earth Festival 10 am.-2 p.m. Saturday at North Cabarrus Park, 760 Orphanage Road, Kannapolis. The festival will feature birds from the Carolina Raptor Center, music and children's activities, games and crafts. The event will also feature free classes on composting, local food and more. Details: vivaverdeearthfest.wordpress.com.
School renaming: The Cabarrus County Board of Education recently voted to rename the old A.T. Allen Elementary School as the Mary Frances Wall Center. The center, located on U.S. 601 in Concord, will be used as space for exceptional children classes and a childcare center when the new A.T. Allen Elementary School on Abilene Road in Concord opens this fall.
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City offers incentives: The Concord City Council recently approved nearly $1.2 million in incentive grants to Celgard LLC to build a research and manufacturing facility in Concord. The two-part grant offers Celgard a $350,000 cash grant to be paid after the company buys the property and additional grants worth up to $819,672 to be paid over four-year segments, provided that Celgard makes at least $57.1 million in taxable improvements in the property. Celgard plans to bring more than 200 jobs to the area.
Unemployment rises: Cabarrus County's unemployment rate increased to 13.4 percent in February, up from 13 percent in January, according to statistics recently released by the N.C. Employment Security Commission. The statewide unemployment rate was 11.1 percent in January and increased to 11.2 percent in February.