What Makes NC Great? National Brands!!

We all know there are many products made right here in The Old North State. But did you know that there are several national and international brands that started out as local NC products?

  • Pepsi - Introduced as “Brad’s Drink” in 1893 in New Bern, NC; Available Internationally, worth over $100 Billion!
  • Texas Pete - Introduced in 1929, in Winston-Salem, NC; Available Nationwide
  • Mt Olive Pickles - Began in 1926 in Mt Olive, NC; Available Nationwide, #1 pickle brand in the US Southeast.
  • Lance Crackers - Founded in a1913 in Charlotte, NC; Available Internationally, Parent company to Tom’s and Cape Cod Potato Chips.
  • Cheerwine - Introduced in 1917 in Salisbury, NC; Available across the southeastern US and is currently expanding its reach throughout the US. Cheerwine is also available in Norway!
  • Hanes - Founded in 1901 in Wintson-Salem, NC; John Hanes owned a tobacco company and when RJ Reynolds bought the company from him, he began making socks and created the Hanes Company that is available internationally today!

NC is also proud to be the home of several great national chain restaurants! (Some of these are still largely regional, but they are all growing and expanding!)

  • Bojangles - Founded: 1977, The First store was located in Charlotte, NC and has grown to nearly 500 stores throughout the southeast and as far north as Pennsylvania.
  • Golden Corral - Founded: 1973, The original Golden Corral was founded in Fayetteville, NC, but has expanded to 480 stores in 40 states.
  • Cook Out - Founded: 1989, Cook-Out began in Greensboro, NC and now has 101 stores in NC, SC, Virginia, and Tennessee.
  • Hardee’s - Founded: 1960, the original Hardee’s opened in Greenville, NC and has since grown, with its sister company Carl’s Jr., into the fifth largest fast food chain in the US.
  • Krispy Kreme - Founded: 1937, Winston-Salem, NC is home to the original Krispy Kreme as well as the headquarters for the international doughnut shop.
  • Ham’s - Founded: 1935, Ham’s originated in Greensboro, NC and now has stores from Virginia down to Florida.



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows

Here is a video of the upcoming TMNT downloadable game from IGN. This looks like it may be the best TMNT game since thee classic arcade side scroller.

What Makes NC Great? State Symbols!

Most people know that the official flower of North Carolina is the Dogwood, and the state bird is the cardinal. But there are many other state symbols that people may not know about. These may seem like silly old symbols, but the most recent symbol, the state butterfly was added just last year!

Here is a list of all of the official stet symbols of North Carolina!

  • Berries, Blue: Blueberry; Red:Strawberry
  • Beverage:Milk    
  • Bird: Cardinal         
  • Butterfly: Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
  • Carnivorous Plant: Venus Flytrap
  • Colors:  Red and Blue
  • Christmas Tree: Fraser Fir
  • Dog: Plott Hound
  • Flower: Dogwood
  • Folk Dance: Clogging
  • Freshwater Trout: Southern Appalachian Brook Trout
  • Fruit: Scuppernong Grape
  • Historical Boat: Shad Boat
  • Horse: Colonial Spanish Mustang
  • Insect: Honeybee
  • Mammal: Grey Squirrel
  • Mineral: Gold
  • Nickname: The Old North State or The Tar Heel State
  • Popular Dance: Shagging        
  • Precious Stone: Emerald         
  • Reptile: Eastern Box Turtle
  • Rock: Granite          
  • Saltwater Fish: Channel bass
  • Shell: Scotch Bonnet
  • Song: “The Old North State,” words by William Gaston, music by Mrs. E. E. Randolph            
  • Sport: Stock Car Racing
  • Tartan: Carolina Tartan
  • Toast: “A Toast to North Carolina
  • Tree: Pine
  • Vegetable: Sweet Potato
  • Wildflower: Carolina Lily

More information on all of the state symbols is available on the NC Secretary of State’s website.


Here’s a new PS4 commercial highlighting the interface and a lot of the cool features that were revealed at E3 including the background download and the app interaction.


What Makes NC Great? Comic Book Conventions!

When most people think of great Comic Book Conventions, they think of San Diego or New York. But The Old North State should also come to mind, as the state plays host to 3 separate conventions throughout the year.

The first of these conventions is Heroes Convention, hosted by Charlotte’s local comic book shop, Heroes Aren’t Hard To Find. Heroes Con takes place June 7-9 this year. The con is celebrating its 31st Anniversary this year! Heroes Con is touted as America’s Favorite Convention! It is attended by several thousands of fans each year, and while there are other nerdy influences, Heroes Con stays very true to its comic book roots. The guests list includes many artists from small and large publications. The panels stay focus on comics, even offering fans a chance to get advice on their won comic book ideas from the pros!

NC Comicon will hosts its 4th annual convention in Durham, November 9th and 10th. The convention hit max capacity n holy 2 hours last year. The con hopes to improve on its attendance from last year. NC Comicon is hosted by Durham’s Ultimate Comics.

Greensboro’s Acme Comics will be hosting its very first Comic Book City Con, October 26th and 27th. The guest list already boasts some impressive talent and continues to grow. The con is also hosting a parade of heroes for cosplayers in downtown Greensboro, which is sure to raise interest and awareness,  as well as eyebrows!

With three exciting annual comic book conventions, there is no doubt that they help make North Carolina great! (And just a little more nerdy!)


Ender’s Game, The Movie, The Poster & The Controversey!!

Earlier this week, the first official poster for Ender’s Game (top) was released. The Orson Scott Card award winning Sci-Fi classic (too soon?) is scheduled to have a film adaptation released later this year, with the title role of Ender Wiggin being played by Asa Butterfield (HugoNanny McPhee Retuns). His sister, Valentine, will be played by Little Miss Sunshine herself, Abigail Breslin. Harrison Ford is also starring in the film as Colonel Graff.  The film’s budget is reported somewhere around $110 Million, so it seems like the movie will not sell fans short, and judging from the stills above, it looks like the money is being put to good use.  While the film itself is extremely exciting and long awaited, there is more to the story. 

Orson Scott Card is original from Greensboro, NC, making the sci-fi adventure double exciting for NSN. However, the excitement doesn’t come without its issues. The upcoming film has been threatened with boycotts already, due to Card’s views on same-sex marriage. He has some pretty staunch right-wing views, even going as far as saying that, “If the Constitution is defined in such a way as to destroy the [definition of marriage,] it is that insane Constitution, not marriage, that will die.” The film’s producer, Roberto Orci (Star Trek) asks fans not to hold Card’s personal views against the film, stating that Card had very little to do with the actual film.

While I am disappointed to hear these views of Card’s, I still love Ender’s Game and can not wait to see the story on the big screen!