New fishing pier: The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission recently partnered with the Matthews Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resource Department to construct a new handicapped-accessible fishing pier at Squirrel Lake Park.
Personnel from Matthews and the Wildlife Commission constructed the floating T-shaped pier earlier this month. The pier is 43 feet long with a 48-foot-wide T-section at the end and incorporates low, angled handrail sections that allow easy access for children and anglers confined to wheelchairs. To enhance fishing opportunities, the commission staff installed a fish feeder within casting distance of the new pier. The staff also stocks the lake with 400 channel catfish in April, June and September each year to supplement existing bass and sunfish fisheries.
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Judges needed: The Myers Park High School Speech and Debate team will be hosting its annual Laird Lewis Invitational Speech and Debate Tournament on Jan. 6-7 on the Myers Park campus. The tournament is in need of judges for oration events, interpretation events and debate events. Meals are provided. Sign up here to volunteer: lairdlewis.org/judges.
2012 Schedule: The Charlotte Speed Demons have released their 2012 schedule, which features 11 bouts.
The season runs from January to October, with the first home event Feb. 25. Home bouts will be held at a new venue: Breakaway Sports, 3917 Trailer Drive, is a new, state-of the art roller sports training and competition facility. Breakaway will host all Speed Demons home bouts and serve as the team's training facility. Adult tickets are $10 in advance; children 12 and younger are $8. The roller derby season kicks off Jan. 29, when the Speed Demons travel to Columbia, S.C., to play the Miss B-Havers. Details and tickets: www.CharlotteSpeedDemons.com.
Food drives: Sears Hometown Stores nationwide are holding food drives to benefit the community and charitable organizations. Now through Dec. 31, customers who donate a nonperishable food item will receive $5 off their purchase of $75 or more at the local Sears Hometown Store. Details: www.searshometownstores.com.