The Brown Note Community Foundation was named LKNConnect’s Outstanding Non-Profit for December 2019. A series of 4 articles were published. You can read about the organization, its programs, its collaborative efforts in the community, and how you can volunteer. —EH Stafford, Managing Editor


The Brown Note Community Foundation (TBNCF) is a new nonprofit organization serving the Lake Norman area. The simple and yet profound mission of this burgeoning organization is to “engage our neighbors in a conversation around community support and to empower the individual to make a positive impact.”



Productive collaborations

It is essential to a growing community that we support our neighbors. The human relationships that form when we show up for one another and decide to do good work together are fundamental to our collective happiness. TBNCF implements this vision throughout our programs.



Collaborative efforts take many different forms


Painted Thanks



Invites kids from all around the Lake Norman area to paint star tokens to show their appreciation for police, fire fighters, and veterans. The stars are distributed mainly through Richard’s Coffee Shop in Mooresville or in personal interactions with TBNCF volunteers. Be on the lookout for this program at area festivals and on school campuses and paint a star to show your support! To find out more about Painted Thanks visit









Think Piece

Is an artistic program that creates for a cause. We are currently supporting Fight the Good Fight with handmade crocheted hats. 50% of the proceeds from each hat go to raising awareness for brain tumors and supporting a foundation devoted to the families of this cause. To see our selection, go to Coming in February, Think Piece will begin a collaboration with Hearts of Fiber in Davidson. Follow TBNCF on social media @tbncf to see what we’re up to!







Think Piece Recycles

Pulls resources from all walks of Lake Norman life. This program upcycles plastic from grocery bags into crocheted reusable shopping bags. We collect bags from the LKNSBN professionals, from Main Street Tavern patrons, from IMPLAN employees, and now from all of my neighbors, to be processed into plarn by students for service hours. Once we have a ball of plastic yarn, volunteers crochet that into a bag. Using the plastic from over 70 grocery bags each, these shopping bags highlight the role of sustainability in our growing city. Bags are being made and sold as fast as we can keep the shop up to date and new styles will be coming fresh off the hook after the holidays. Visit to see our bags and follow us on social media @tbncf to see what’s next.



Our flagship program is in its infancy

TBNCF’s flagship program is just beginning. The P(our)CH, will allow for the largest impact where teamwork is concerned. The P(our)CH will be a mobile coffee shop benefitting school programs. Fundraising for this program is in its infancy. It will take time for this new nonprofit to earn public trust and the grants necessary to fund construction of the shop. Through something as simple as serving locally roasted coffee with locally sourced dairy options, we will invite the community to participate in supporting educators and students. The P(our)CH will facilitate city-wide collaborations, and our ideas don’t stop at coffee! To find out more about our mission and to stay informed of our progress go to



To learn more about us

Find out how you can get directly involved, visit and take our short survey. Also find us on Facebook and Instagram @tbncf.



All too often the desire to get involved is ever-present, but the “how” is the tough part. Let The Brown Note Community Foundation be your first step in making your “how” happen.




Sarah Varnado is the Founder and Executive Director of The Brown Note Community Foundation. She was born and raised in South Louisiana. Her family of four has enjoyed living in Huntersville for three years. With a background in early childhood education, she is fulfilling a passion to support teachers and to spread joy through this non-profit work.