Living Here Guide

The Observer in the digital age: Apps, mobile options, color comics, videos and more

Since you’ve gotten this far into our Living Here guide, you already know the biggest reason why more than 1 million people read the Charlotte Observer in print and online.

They want local news and information, and the Observer delivers more of that than any other source in Charlotte.

We do that by fielding the largest newsgathering organization in the Carolinas, with more than 150 journalists and correspondents. Specific reporters are devoted to vital topics like schools, the economy, local government, business, the environment, the arts, entertainment and local nonprofit groups.

The Observer also has a lot of experience covering what really matters in this region, having published here for more than 128 years. Its coverage has earned the newspaper five Pulitzer Prizes, including one for editorial cartooning in 2014.

But if you pull veteran readers aside and ask why they read us, they are just as apt to name dozens of other reasons not at all obvious to a newcomer. So, I’d like to introduce you to just 12 surprises that await new subscribers:

The e-edition. What feels as natural as newsprint, only you can also search it electronically and download it wherever you are? The e-edition, which is an electronic replica of the printed paper. People who love print and try this are astounded. Really. We also have Observer apps for smartphones and tablets.

Sports, in-depth. We dedicate beat writers to the Carolina Panthers, Charlotte Hornets, NASCAR, UNC Charlotte, Davidson and other regional colleges and high schools. We partner with the Raleigh News & Observer for ACC sports. And our sports columnists, Scott Fowler and Tom Sorensen, weigh in on all of it.

Color comics, every day. We are one of the nation’s few metro dailies to offer them in print. And if you go to, you’ll find more than double the number of color comics that you get in the daily paper.

Pair up with the nation’s best cartoonist. Virtually daily, you can see the genius of the Observer’s Kevin Siers, who won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning. Every Monday, Kevin publishes a cartoon and invites readers to write a caption for it. Winning entries appear in print and online. You can also see an archive of Kevin’s work at

CLT (Charlotte Leisure Time). Our weekend entertainment guide appears every Friday in print and daily online. Find movies, plays, restaurants, festivals and concerts, including a “Big Shows” feature that lists, months in advance, the top acts coming to Charlotte.

“I’m So Clever.” Our readers really are. Every Saturday, we feature their imaginative solutions to everyday problems in the Home & Garden section. Send an idea yourself and you could win a copy of the “I’m So Clever” book.

“The Daily Edit.” Thousands of photos from across the world stream into our newsroom daily. A few of the best make it into print. Online, we present dozens more in a slideshow that we call “The Daily Edit.” The best way to view them is in the Observer’s tablet edition: Big photos that fill the screen.

Charlotte’s history in pictures. Newsroom researcher Maria David hosts the blog “Retro Charlotte” on She draws from thousands of archived Observer photos for fascinating looks at the way we were.

Let’s go. Our Sunday Travel section is a mix of globe-trotting adventures and weekend destinations a short drive away. On, you’ll also find “Road Trips,” a package of more than 30 regional places to visit.

Let’s eat. No one knows more about this region’s dining options than Observer restaurant writer Helen Schwab. Each Friday, Helen introduces what’s new in CLT. Go to and search your preferences from more than 70 restaurant categories. Also check out our ultimate ethnic eating guide: “Tour the World in Charlotte food.”

Let’s laugh. Even if you stay up for late-night talk shows, you can’t catch all the monologues. So each Saturday, we bring you the best lines of the week in a feature called “Laugh Attacks.” Find it in our Opinion section.

Let’s not panic. Yes, this is a handy magazine in print. And yes, some like it so much that they buy extra copies. But if you misplace your copy and we’re sold out, you can still find it on We keep it there year-round.

There’s more, as you’ll discover. And as you do, we hope it gives you the edge you need to truly experience Charlotte.