10th Anniversary: Buzzing Back in Time to Volume 1, No. 1, July 2007

— Jeanne E. Fredriksen, Managing Editor • jeanne.fredriksen@rolesvillebuzz.com • July 2017

The First Rolesville Buzz, July 2007In July 2007, the inaugural issue of the Rolesville Buzz rolled off the presses and into the mail. The brainchild of Bill Herrin – formerly of The News & Observer – the newspaper put Rolesville in the news in a big way, and this issue that you’re holding right now represents the 10-year mark for the monthly publication. And still, as the newspaper proudly proclaimed 10 years ago, it remains “FREE AS A BIRD.”

Out of curiosity, I spent time going through back copies of every issue – as few as eight pages and as many as 28 pages – to see how the paper and the town have changed. What I learned was equally as surprising as not, and as fate would have it, some things never change. That first issue was filled with interesting news, as were the subsequent issues that made up the first volume of publication.

Back then, the No. 1 topic was the town’s growth, and in a decade of publication, that topic remains a hot item. We still write about it. Rolesville still is recognized as the fastest-growing town in the state (U.S. Census Bureau, 2014) and one of the fastest-growing towns in the country (Realtor.com, April 2016).

Nostalgia

People

♦ Nancy Kelly was mayor of Rolesville, and commissioner Frank Eagles was mayor pro tem, but that would change. Kelly retired, and Eagles became Mayor. Eagles continues to serve as mayor today.

♦ Bryan Hicks was the town planner. Today, he’s the town manager.

♦ JG Ferguson joined Parks & Rec as the athletic coordinator. Today he’s the director.

♦ Sherwood Bobbitt, known to many in Rolesville for his work with the Rolesville Chamber of Commerce and the Rolesville High School Business Alliance, joined the Buzz in October 2008 as office manager after more than 20 years at The News & Observer. Two months later, he became the publisher of the paper, and in February 2010, he became owner/publisher.

Places

♦  Granite Falls Swim & Athletic Club broke ground June 26, 2007, and opened in the summer of 2008.

♦ Sanford Creek Elementary School opened on July 9, 2007. It was the town’s second school and its first year-round.

♦ Rosalini’s, now a Rolesville staple, opened mid-July 2007.

♦ The Rolesville Police Department, per then-Lt. Matt Anderson, who later would become Police Chief Anderson, was about to move from the little building on West Young Street to its new digs on Southtown Circle on August 1, 2007. Parks and Recreation would eventually move into the old police station.

♦ The Northern Wake Tech Community College campus would open on August 15, 2007.

♦ It was announced that the Wake County Northern Regional Center in Wake Forest was scheduled to open in 2008.

♦ The Rolesville post office announced plans to move to a larger space in a strip mall on Rogers Road, where it is today.

Things

♦ The initial circulation of the paper was 10,500 copies. Ten years later, it’s just over 16,000.

♦ A new town hall was under construction at Southtown Circle. Today, the mayor and commissioners are talking about a new Town Hall complex.

♦ Rolesville Middle School was scheduled to open its doors in the spring of 2009.

Bits ’n’ Pieces

♦ Rolesville’s population in 1980 was 381. Ten years later, it had “risen” to 577. Ten years after that, it jumped to 907. The July 2016 U.S. Census Bureau estimate shows a population of 6,962.

♦ In 2007, 80% of the Rolesville population had earned a high school diploma. Today, that number is 94.8%.

♦ Only 25% of the residents had earned a bachelor’s degree in 2007. Now, it’s 58.5%.

♦ The median income in Rolesville was $60,000. That has increased to today’s figure of $82,200.

♦ The Rolesville Police Department staff was made up of eight full-time officers and six part-time officers. To stay ahead of the continuing population growth, the RPD now has one chief, two investigators, one community resource coordinator, one school resource officer, 12 patrol officers, four reserve officers, and one administrative support specialist.

♦ Over 60 writers have contributed articles and columns during the 10 years of the Buzz. Our teams of advertising sales people have changed over the years, yet hundreds of advertisers have supported the Buzz’s efforts.

I remember when I was introduced to the Rolesville Buzz. Arriving at my new home in late June 2011, I checked the mail box (expecting to sweep out the cobwebs), and – lo and behold! – there was the June issue of the Rolesville Buzz. Curious to learn where Rolesville was and why it was buzzing, I read the issue cover to cover and was pleased to learn there was a hyper-local news outlet that focused on the good and the interesting rather than on the negative and the crime.

Today, all of us connected with the Buzz hear that same sentiment over and over from readers, and we thank you for that. With your support and good wishes, we look forward to the next 10 years of bringing to you stories about the best of what our area has to offer.