Basketball fans might remember Eric “Sleepy” Floyd from his early days at Hunter Huss High School in Gastonia — his team won the 1977 state championship, defeating future Tar Heel James Worthy and Ashbrook High — or from Georgetown University, where he was team captain in 1981 and 1982. Floyd went on to enjoy a 13-year career in the NBA before retiring in 1995. Today, he’s a corporate partnership consultant and adviser at Pappas Properties.
I frequent Freedom Park a lot, especially during the summer. My favorite thing about it is the diversity: Whether it’s an art walk, different foods or types of music, Freedom Park has so much to offer. You also have the greenway and the pond. All types of people are out — people bring their dogs, and people are happy — I just really love to see people that are in a happy frame of mind.
I love music, and in particular, I am big into jazz. Throughout the summer and fall, there are a variety of music-related events around town. JazzArts Charlotte hosts an amazing jazz season that I can pretty much get locked into. The JAZZ ROOM, located in the heart of uptown, provides a casual and intimate setting with tables and a full bar, reminiscent of the classic jazz rooms of yesteryear. thejazzarts.org
There are so many amazing charities in Charlotte that raise money for outstanding causes. I get a lot of enjoyment out of it, and I try to be involved in as much of this as I can. I have done a lot with St. Jude in the past — it is an amazing organization with a great cause. Economically, we are a city with many great organizations that try to raise money for lower-income areas. We are a city that is known for putting a hand out to try to help someone up. … I am very proud of how philanthropic we are.
Where do we start? Charlotte has so much to offer, from the Charlotte Checkers to the Charlotte Knights (pictured); obviously the Hornets, and definitely the Panthers. [Hornets majority owner] Michael (Jordan) and I grew up playing basketball together, so obviously I’m supportive of and proud of him. But also I just really like what the Hornets are doing in the community — they are giving back. And the Charlotte Knights baseball team is just a wonderful, family-oriented organization.
Charlotte has had a great influx of restaurants. In the SouthPark area, I really like Peppervine. In South End, I like Barcelona Wine Bar. We also have our longtime favorites like The Fig Tree and Cajun Queen — they have really great jazz upstairs. I like Del Frisco’s for steak, and if you like French food, La Belle Helene uptown is fantastic. Then you have the new Kimpton Hotel (pictured) and Farenheit. The rooftop bars have really changed the dynamics of Charlotte.
When I have free time, I enjoy playing as much golf as I can. Growing up playing competitive basketball during college and in the NBA, when you retire you try to find something to replace that competitive compulsion. Many athletes gravitate toward playing golf because it is so challenging and competitive. There are so many great golf courses in Charlotte: Quail Hollow, Charlotte Country Club and Ballantyne Resort, which has a really nice course. Raintree Country Club is an old traditional course that is challenging.
l really enjoy living in the Solis SouthParkτ community. It is so convenient and has great walkability to many restaurants, which makes it accessible and friendly. You can walk to the movies and to restaurants — I love Dogwood Southern Table. You meet so many people from across the world just walking around. solissouthpark.com
I really enjoy learning about wine, from tastings at Bond Street Wines in Eastover as well as at Foxcroft Wine Co. (pictured) on Fairview Rd. Wine is the common denominator for everyone, so you are able to share over something you enjoy and meet really interesting people at the same time. Just meeting good people and hearing their backgrounds and learning about places you’ve never been through socializing — that is what I enjoy most. AND, you don’t have to be wealthy to enjoy this experience. bondstreetwines.com, foxcroftwine.com SP
compiled by Whitley Adkins Hamlin
Header image courtesy of Merchant and Trade
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