Good News Friday: It’s a good day to be a fan of the NC State Wolfpack

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - APRIL 04: DJ Burns Jr. #30 of the North Carolina State Wolfpack poses during Media Day for the Final Four in the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at State Farm Stadium on April 04, 2024 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Alysa Rubin/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)


By Billy Ball

April 5, 2024

The men’s and women’s teams will compete for a national championship in college basketball this weekend. Plus: How to watch the solar eclipse, and Charlotte’s first Latino film festival.

Don’t pay attention to anyone who tries to tell you it’s all bad news out there. It can’t possibly be.

That’s partly why we started Good News Friday, our weekly roundup of our favorite positive stories in North Carolina. The world can be a hard place, but it can be a beautiful place too, and one without the other won’t do.

Plus, like ice cream, there’s always room for optimism. It fills in the cracks. Let’s get to the good news:

Good day to be a Wolfpack Fan

Carolina—perhaps the state’s premiere college basketball program, depending on who you ask—has a slogan: “Good Day to be a Tar Heel.” Abbreviated #GDTBTH.

These days, it’s a much better day if you’re a member of the Wolfpack.

Both the men’s and women’s programs at NC State are competing in the Final Four this weekend. They’ll have a chance to win national championships in both. The last time that a program won it all in both the men’s and women’s brackets was 2014, when UConn pulled it off.

NC State doesn’t always get the headlines in basketball. Its men’s team has struggled since the glory days of the 1970s and 1980s. But both squads are deserving of all the attention right now. And D.J. Burns, the big man on the men’s team, has become a national star for his play and his personality.

The women play undefeated South Carolina at 7 pm tonight. The men play #1 seed Purdue Saturday at approximately 6 pm.

So, from one Tar Heel alum to all the rest of y’all: Go Wolfpack. I’m not making the little wolf with my hand though.

Solar Eclipse

What’s more optimistic than looking up? Literally.

North Carolinians who love skywatching are in for a show Monday. NASA says the state will have a view of a partial eclipse of the sun. Depending on where you live in NC, about 80% of the sun will be blocked out by the moon. The view starts around 2 p.m. on Monday (April 8) and peaks about 3:15 pm.

Generally, the farther northwest you are in the state, the more complete the eclipse.

Some parts of the U.S. will see a rare total eclipse, but unless you’re planning on a trip to Dallas or Cincinnati, you’ll have to catch it secondhand. has a good breakdown and map of the best locations in NC here. Not to state the obvious, but don’t just stare at the eclipse. It will hurt your eyes. Consider a pair of solar eclipse glasses.


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Charlotte’s first Latino film festival

NC has good film festivals. In fact, Durham’s Full Frame Film Festival is going on right now.

But here’s a new one that’s overdue: The Charlotte Latino Film Festival, the Queen City’s first film festival focused exclusively on Latino film and art, launched Thursday and runs through April 14.

Since 2020, the organization Cine Casual has been leading a Latino film series. They specialize in “connecting Charlotte’s growing Latino population with high-quality programming that celebrates our cultures, encourages cross-cultural understanding, and fosters a sense of belonging,” according to their website.

Now they’ve expanded the film series into 10 days of art. Each film comes with panel discussions with local leaders, as well as dance and music connected to the film.

Huzzah. Here’s to many more. Get tickets here.


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  • Billy Ball

    Billy Ball is Cardinal & Pine's senior community editor. He’s covered local, state and national politics, government, education, criminal justice, the environment and immigration in North Carolina for almost two decades, winning state, regional and national awards for his reporting and commentary.



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