15 Must-Visit Small Towns in North Carolina

From the mountains to the coast, explore these quaint destinations in the Tar Heel State.


Published:

Photo by Bennian/Shutterstock

North Carolina is home to many quaint towns rich in history and natural beauty that provide an opportunity for relaxation and family togetherness, without the noise and traffic of larger cities. If you love the small-town vibe, pack a suitcase to discover the irresistible charm of these road-trip worthy destinations.

Mountains
 

Banner Elk

Photo courtesy of Bill Russ — VisitNC.com

A young boy enjoys a sledding run in Banner Elk.
 

Avery County’s Banner Elk, about 15 miles from Boone, offers an ideal destination for families. “Banner Elk sits between two of the major ski resorts in North Carolina,” says Nancy Owen of the Banner Elk Tourism Development Authority. “On one side of us is Sugar Mountain Resort and on the other side is Beech Mountain Resort, so we’re within a 5-mile radius of two of the biggest winter attractions in North Carolina.”

The town offers plenty of year-round family fun, too. In summer, visit Wildcat Lake, which offers a beach area, swimming, fishing and canoe rentals. It’s also a great spot for a family picnic.

“Our Fourth of July Celebration is really like no other. It’s true classic America,” Owen says. “Thousands of people come to our one stoplight town for this parade. It’s a family tradition.” The parade concludes with a Party in the Park at Tate-Evans Park with food, vendors, a rubber duck race, an egg toss and sack races.

In the fall, Banner Elk is known for its Woolly Worm Festival, held the third weekend in October. The festival celebrates the coming of snow season with worm races, with the winner helping to predict the coming weather.

Insider Tip: You’ll find spectacular mountain views at Apple Hill Farm, an alpaca farm 5 miles from Banner Elk. The private farm frequently hosts tours to see the alpacas, llamas, goats, guardian donkeys, dogs and Mr. Pickles, the pig.


Blowing Rock

Photo courtesy of Todd Bush Photography

"Main Street is the heart of the village, a walkable and friendly place with a mix of unique shops, galleries, independent restaurants," says Amanda Lugenbell of Blowing Rock Tourism Development Authority.
 

Blowing Rock, a 15-minute drive from Boone, is known as the Crown of the Blue Ridge and is located in Watauga and Caldwell counties along the Blue Ridge Parkway. The town is named for The Blowing Rock — an enormous cliff high above the Johns River Gorge, which is 3,000 feet below. Fish or hike at Moses Cone Memorial Park, ride the rails at Tweetsie Railroad, launch an aerial excursion at High Gravity Adventures, or explore a natural gravitational anomaly at Mystery Hill.

“The mix of outdoor activity and energetic entertainment is something families love about our town,” says Amanda Lugenbell of Blowing Rock Tourism Development Authority. “The atmosphere of downtown is another quality that makes Blowing Rock special. Main Street is the heart of the village, a walkable and friendly place with a mix of unique shops, galleries, independent restaurants, and the lovingly maintained Memorial Park — right in the center of it all.”

Nearby attractions include Grandfather Mountain, Julian Price Memorial Park, Linville Caverns and Linville Falls.

Don’t-miss annual events include the July Fourth Celebration and Parade with sack races, a watermelon-eating contest and inflatables. The annual Blowing Rock Halloween Festival features a costume contest, a scavenger hunt and pumpkin-bowling competitions.

Insider tip: Animal-loving families can attend The Blowing Rock Charity Horse Show, which hosts three outdoor shows each summer.


Brevard

Photo courtesy of Transylvania County Tourism Development Authority

Rainbow Falls is a 150-foot tall waterfall in Pisgah National Forest.
 

Brevard is a best known for its scenic beauty. Located about 30 miles from Asheville, Brevard is the county seat of Transylvania County and part of the state’s “Land of the Waterfalls,” a region comprised of more than 200 waterfalls. The city’s proximity to Pisgah National Forest and DuPont State Recreational Forest, where portions of “The Hunger Games” and “Last of the Mohicans” were filmed, makes Brevard popular among outdoor enthusiasts for hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing and fishing.

Kids can search for precious gems at Crystal Mountain Gem Mine or head downtown to browse the aisles of the “coolest toy store on the planet,” O.P. Taylor’s.

Nearby attractions include Sliding Rock, a 60-foot natural waterfall/rock slide perfect for a refreshing splash into the natural pool at the end; and Forest Discovery Center, which offers hands-on exhibits and interactive displays.

Every Memorial Day weekend, enjoy the White Squirrel Festival, a celebration of the town and its famous mascot. Attendees enjoy live music, arts and crafts vendors, kids’ activities, a box derby and a parade.

Insider tip: On the second Friday of every month, Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute, a 200-acre former NASA facility about 17 miles from Brevard, offers “An Evening at PARI,” which includes a tour and outdoor observation session.


Bryson City

Photo courtesy of Bill Russ — VisitNC.com

The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad takes you through a beautiful corner of state into river gorges, across fertile valleys and through tunnels cut out of mountains.
 

Surrounded by mountains, historic Bryson City serves as a depot for the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad that delights families with its scenic rail excursions, such as the Polar Express.

After riding the rails, explore the Smoky Mountain Trains Museum.

Spend a day hiking trails in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park or rafting/kayaking the Nantahala River. Be sure to visit the Nantahala Outdoor Center for information on guided rafting tours and packages with zip lining and/or train excursion options. Mine for gems at the Deep Creek Tube Center Mining Company or fishing in nearby Fontana Lake.

Enjoy free concerts every Saturday evening from June through October at Riverfront Park, and search for souvenirs in one of many unique arts and crafts shops.

While visiting Bryson City, consider a day trip to nearby Cherokee or Clingmans Dome, the highest point in Tennessee. 

Insider tip: The Great Smoky Mountains is in the 70-mile wide path of the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse happening Monday, Aug. 21. The area offers numerous viewing options, including Swain County Event Park.


Hot Springs

Photo courtesy of Hot Springs Tourism Association

Hot Springs is town rich in history with plenty of charm.
 

This charming mountain town 40 miles north of Asheville is named for natural hot spring waters that have transformed the area a resort destination. First discovered by Native Americans, the natural springs were thought to have healing powers. Today, you can relax in modern Jacuzzi tubs outside on the banks of Spring Creek and the French Broad River at the Hot Springs Resort and Spa.

“There is a truly relaxed vibe in town, and when people slow down and live in the moment, they tend to be happier,” says Stacey Geyer of the Hot Springs Tourism Association.

Hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail, which runs through the town. You can also tube, swim, raft, kayak or fish in Spring Creek and the French Broad or Laurel rivers.

Shop local artisan crafts and dine at one of many locally owned restaurants. Soar through the forest at nearby French Broad Rafting & Ziplines, or take a day trip to Biltmore Estate in Asheville or Chimney Rock State Park in Chimney Rock.

The French Broad River Festival is one the town’s most popular annual events. Held the first weekend in May, the festival features raft races, live music and arts-and-crafts vendors. 

Insider tip: Pack a picnic lunch and climb Max Patch, the 5000-foot bald mountain. It’s an easy walk with picturesque, 360-degree views.


Saluda

Photo courtesy of Saluda Business Association

Saluda's outdoor recreation includes hiking, mountain biking, fishing and plenty of family-friendly tubing options along the Green River.
 

Saluda is “where the Foothills end and the Blue Ridge begins.” This cozy small town, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, offers plenty of outdoor recreation and maintains a strong arts community.

“You’ve got an incredibly quaint, picturesque downtown surrounded by the Greenville Watershed, a protected area, and the Green River Game Lands — 18,000 acres protected by the state,” says Sara Bell of the Saluda Business Association. “Saluda is an oasis.”

Outdoor recreation includes hiking, mountain biking, fishing and plenty of family-friendly tubing options along the Green River. “Saluda has also attracted a really vibrant artistic community,” Bell says. In May, the town celebrates its arts heritage with the Saluda Arts Festival, which attracts tourists and renowned local and regional artists. The event also features live music and kid-friendly activities.

Saluda is well-known for its annual Coon Dog Day Festival, offering food, live music, parade, crafts, street dancing and more. The event is held the Saturday after July Fourth. 

Insider tip: “The leaf change here is just phenomenal,” Bell says. But, she adds, the town is about 30 minutes south of Asheville, so the colors peak in the second or third week in October rather than the first.


Piedmont
 

Hillsborough
 

Photo courtesy of Chip Henderson — VISITNC.COM

Downtown Hillsborough offers a variety of unique shops.
 

Hillsborough is known as “the small town with a big history” with more than 100 schools, churches and buildings from the late 18th and 19th centuries. Its central location in the state, along with a healthy serving of Southern charm, makes the town an interesting  tourist destination for families.

Take a guided tour of the historic downtown or explore the Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area, a North Carolina State Park offering hiking, picnicking and fishing on the Eno River. The Historic Occoneechee Speedway Trail, NASCAR’s last remaining dirt track, hosted races between 1948 and 1969 and now offers 3 miles of hiking trails near the Eno River that include the 1-mile oval and rusty remnants of the track’s glory days. History buffs will also enjoy the Occaneechi Indian Village and exhibits at Orange County Historical Museum.

Every September, barbecue lovers celebrate Hog Day with plenty of pulled pork, live music, unique gifts, home decor, face painting and bounce houses.

Nearby attractions for kids include Kidzu Children’s Museum in Chapel Hill, Eno River State Park and the Carolina Basketball Museum on the campus of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Insider tip: The best spot for walking, jogging and cycling is Riverwalk, a paved urban greenway along the Eno River and part of North Carolina’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail.


Salisbury
 

Photo courtesy of Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau

Salisbury is filled with “history museums, agritourism locations, arts and cultural sites, and a charming downtown."
 

Salisbury is 45 miles from Charlotte and the home of Cheerwine, the popular cherry-flavored soda established in 1917. Salisbury and Rowan County’s “countryside and urban vibe speaks to its unique character,” says Tara Furr, director of public relations and communications for the Rowan County Convention and Visitors Bureau. The area is home to “history museums, agritourism locations, arts and cultural sites, and a charming downtown all within an easy drive from one another,” Furr says.

You can easily spend a day filled with family fun at Dan Nicholas Park, which has paddleboats, a park train, gem mining, a carousel, mini golf, an aquarium a barnyard and a water plaza/splash pad.

Savor the sounds of nature at Eagle Point Nature Preserve, a 200-acre area on High Rock Lake with hiking trails and canoe and fishing access. Help celebrate the 100th anniversary of Cheerwine with the “Cheerwine: 100 Years Exhibit” at Rowan Museum in downtown, or pack a picnic and head to Dunn’s Mountain Park for hiking and outdoor recreation.

Nearby attractions include the North Carolina Transportation Museum in Spencer, Lazy 5 Ranch in Mooresville and Patterson Farm in China Grove. 

Insider tip: Tiger World, a nonprofit wildlife preserve for exotic animals in Rockwell, is a 20-minute drive from Salisbury. Educational guided tours occur Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.


Pinehurst
 

Photo courtesy of Village of Pinehurst

Through parks and greenways, families can enjoy walking trails, soccer and baseball fields, an in-line hockey rink, tennis courts, a disc-golf course, bocce ball and a splash pad.
 

The famed golf destination known as the Village of Pinehurst has much to offer families in addition to world-class golf courses. Through parks and greenways, families can enjoy walking trails, soccer and baseball fields, an in-line hockey rink, tennis courts, a disc-golf course, bocce ball and a splash pad.

“Pinehurst Resort offers many activities for parents and children alike,” says Melissa Holt, a communications specialist for the Village of Pinehurst. While mom and/or dad hit the links, kids can enjoy indoor games and fun at KidsClub. “Later, the whole family can enjoy the resort’s private lake, Lake Pinehurst, featuring fishing, boat rentals, kayaks, cabanas and more,” Holt says.

Downtown Pinehurst offers boutique shopping and family-friendly dining options. “While you’re there, stop by the Tufts Archives and learn about the Village of Pinehurst’s history,” Holt suggests.

Don’t-miss annual events include Fourth Fest in July with a parade and fireworks, and Holly Arts and Crafts Festival and Oktoberfest in the fall. 

Insider tip: For a delicious Southern breakfast, try the blueberry pancakes or biscuits and gravy at Pinehurst Track Restaurant while watching the horses train at the Harness Track.


Coast
 

Bath
 

Photo courtesy of Bill Russ — VisitNC.com

The harbor at Bath, North Carolina's first town.
 

A roundup of North Carolina’s small towns wouldn’t be complete without the state’s first town, incorporated in 1705. Bath, located on the Pamlico River, near the Pamlico Sound, is rich in history and is a National Historic Landmark. Learn about the town’s first settlers and how Bath became the state’s first port.

“Historic Bath is very scenic,” says Charles Guard, historic interpreter for Bath with the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. “Many people come just to park by Bonner’s Point and sit out and watch the sunset.”

Bath was a favorite haunt of Edward Teach, better known as Blackbeard, the pirate, who frequented North Carolina’s coast.

Be sure to visit St. Thomas Episcopal Church, built in 1734, making it the oldest church building in the state. 

Insider tip: In front of the Bonner House, look south across the water. The land visible to the left is Plum Point, sometimes referred to as Teach’s Point after the notorious pirate who lived there.


Beaufort
 

Photo courtesy of Bill Russ ― VisitNC.com

Wild horses on Shackleford Banks, part of the Cape Lookout National Seashore. The horses are believed to be descendants of Spanish mustangs that were brought to North Carolina five centuries ago.
 

Founded in 1709 and incorporated in 1723, Beaufort is North Carolina’s third oldest town and is located along the state’s southern Outer Banks. Be sure to stroll along Front Street, a scenic downtown waterfront area offering a variety of shops and restaurants. The North Carolina Maritime Museum in Beaufort serves as the official repository of artifacts from Blackbeard’s ship, Queen Anne’s Revenge, since the ship ran aground near the town in 1718. See more than 300 pieces from the ship on display, and learn about the coastal environment and the area’s natural history at the museum.

Beaufort Historic Site offers a historic building tour that stops by the courthouse and the building that once housed the apothecary shop and doctor’s office.

Take a ferry or private boat to Rachel Carson Reserve, home to a herd of wild horses and host of summertime educational programs about the reserve’s habitats and animals. See more than 100 wild horses by hopping on a ferry to Shackleford Banks, a barrier island in Cape Lookout National Seashore. 

Insider tip: Book a guided bike tour with Hungry Town Tours, which offers a variety of historic, culinary and scenic tours to explore the historic charm of this small town.


Edenton
 

Photo courtesy of Kip Shaw/Chowan Tourism Development Authority

Tours are available of the 1886 Roanoke River Lighthouse.
 

The first Colonial capital of North Carolina, Edenton offers a lively downtown and distinctive architecture that reflects the town’s 300-year history. Take a walking tour from the Historic Edenton State Historic Site to the 1886 Roanoke River Lighthouse and 1767 Chowan County Courthouse, or a guided tour via trolley to view notable sites in the Edenton Cotton Mill Historic District.

Head to Colonial Park on South Broad Street for a cruise around Edenton Bay. “The Liber-Tea is an electric boat that can take families out for a wonderful maritime tour,” says Nancy Nicholls of the Chowan County Tourism Development Authority.

The town also offers kayaking, canoeing, camping and trails for walking and birding.

Visit the Edenton National Fish Hatchery, operated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, to learn about the hatchery’s role in preservation.

Annual events include Edenton Music and Water Festival each summer with free boat rides, live music, arts-and-crafts vendors, dancing and a guided sunset paddle activity.

The town’s Peanut Festival is held the first weekend in October and features a parade, Battle of the Bands event, arts-and-crafts vendors, and a 5K run/walk. 

Insider tip: See a show at the Rocky Hock Playhouse, a live Christian musical theater.


Manteo

PHOTO COURTESY OF CHIP HENDERSON — VISITNC.COM

Enjoy the scenic views of the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse and Manteo waterfront.
 

This coastal town on Roanoke Island is packed with family fun and history lessons. The scenic downtown waterfront is dotted with restaurants and gift shops, and is ideal for leisurely strolls and spectacular views of the harbor. One of the town’s most recognizable gems is the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse, the only in-shore lighthouse on the Outer Banks.

See a movie at the Pioneer Theatre, which claims the oldest single-screen theater in America. Additional family attractions include North Carolina Aquariums on Roanoke Island, Elizabethan Gardens and Roanoke Island Festival Park, a must-visit destination for learning about the area’s Native American history and first English colony settlement. While there, climb aboard the Elizabeth II, a 16-century replica ship, or explore American Indian Town, a new exhibit that represents what English explorers found in the late 16th century. Learn about the Lost Colony at Roanoke Adventure Museum or by attending a summer performance of America’s longest-running outdoor drama, “The Lost Colony.” 

Insider tip: Elizabethan Gardens hosts Wet and Wild Wednesday for young kids June 21-Aug. 16. Children can learn about plants and water, pot a take-home plant, and cool off with water sprinklers, squirt toys and a water cannon. The event is free with admission.


New Bern

Photo courtesy of Tryon Place

The gardens at Tryon Palace
 

Historic New Bern is an alluring Southern town along the Trent and Neuse rivers known as North Carolina’s first state capitol and the birthplace of Pepsi-Cola. It boasts a lively downtown consisting of shops, restaurants and riverfront attractions.

Tryon Palace, North Carolina’s first state capitol, is now a living history attraction offering character interpretation, tours and programs. Visit the Birthplace of Pepsi and the Pepsi Store on Middle Street to view and buy memorabilia, and stop by the New Bern Firemen’s Museum to learn about the oldest fire company in the state.

New Bern is also near the Croatan National Forest that offers 159,000 acres for camping, picnicking, swimming, canoeing, hiking and observing wildlife. Picnic at Union Point Park, in the historic downtown district. It features a gazebo, walkway, boat launches, a fishing pier and a small playground. Young kids can slide, swing and climb at the fort-like structure at  Kidsville at Seth West Parrot Park. 

Insider tip: Tour historic New Bern in a fully restored 1929 Ford Model A. Tours are booked via Aerie Bed and Breakfast Guest House and Conference Center, one block from Tryon Palace.


Ocracoke

Photo by Melinda Fondrie Sutton

The village of Ocracoke is popular with families who love outdoor recreation and water sports.
 

The island of Ocracoke is accessible only by plane or ferry, but it should still make your list of must-visit towns. There are no traffic lights, chain restaurants or movie theaters, making Ocracoke a simple and unique paradise for beach lovers to visit.

“Shells are plentiful on the 16 miles of clean, untouched, virgin seashore, without any houses, condos or high rise hotels over your shoulder,” says Helena Stevens, travel and tourism director for Ocracoke. “We are truly unique.”

The village is popular for families who love outdoor recreation. “Go kayaking on Silver Lake or explore Springer’s Point Nature Preserve, one of Blackbeard the Pirate’s haunts,” Stevens suggests.

Families can take an offshore adventure by chartering a fishing expedition, sailing Pamlico Sound or visiting Teach’s Hole, where Blackbeard was beheaded in 1718.

Experience Blackbeard’s Pirate Jamboree the last weekend in October to see a historically accurate pirate encampment and watch three ships re-create the last hours of Blackbeard’s life. Visitors are encouraged to wear their best buccaneer gear to this event.

The village welcomes summer with the Ocrafolk Festival — three days of music and storytelling that takes place during the first full weekend in June.

Insider tip: Capture the perfect family photo at Springer’s Point, which offers wide panoramic views.


Myra Wright is the web editor of Carolina Parent and Piedmont Parent. She frequently writes about North Carolina travel and loves exploring the state with her husband and three kids.

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August 2018

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
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Telephone: 704-866-6923
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Join the Backcountry folk on the 18th Century Farm for an idle afternoon of music, dance, and intrigue from August 1775.

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
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Telephone: 704-854-6676
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Search high and low for nature's hidden treasures on this fun-filled scavenger hunt. Pick up the clues at the nature center, and stop back for prizes at the end!

Cost: Free

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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The final night of the Old Town Amphitheater Summer Concert Series is "An Evening with Lyle Lovett and His Large Band."

Cost: Free

Where:
Old Town Amphitheater
157 Johnston St.
Rock Hill, SC
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Take a leisurely stroll through the McDowell Prairie as the new moon falls on the peak viewing nights of the Perseid Meteor Shower. With cooperative weather, spot up to 90 meteors per hour while...

Cost: $3

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
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This fun dog show tests a variety of breeds on their agility, obedience and showmanship. See website for times. 

Cost: $5 for parking (cash only)

Where:
Cabarrus Arena and Events Center
4751 NC Hwy. 49 N.
Concord, NC
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Telephone: 704-920-3976
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Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
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Telephone: 704-866-6923
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Join our experienced staff "in the field" to deepen your connection to nature by getting up close with wildlife. Contribute to a survey collection database, and experience the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
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Come hear Grammy-winning music and comedy from America’s Favorite Cowboys. Shows at noon and 3:00 p.m.

Cost: $45 adults; $30 children; children younger than 2 free

Where:
Tweetsie Railroad
300 Tweetsie Railroad Ln.
Blowing Rock, NC  28605
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Sponsor: Tweetsie Railroad
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Church of the Redeemer - Kids offers a class for adaptive learning needs and a sensory room during the Sunday School hour (9 a.m.) and worship hour (10:30 a.m.). Volunteers who desire to come...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sun Valley High School
5211 Old Charlotte Hwy.
Monroe, NC
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Sponsor: Church of the Redeemer
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Matthews UMC offers opportunities for Christian education, discipleship, fellowship and care for persons of all ages with disabilities and their families. Experience age-level appropriate Sunday...

Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews United Methodist Church
801 S. Trade St.
Matthews, NC
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The Special Needs Ministry at Calvary welcomes all ages and abilities! Guests, including parents and caregivers, are invited to join.

Cost: Free

Where:
Calvary Church
5801 Pineville–Matthews Road
, NC
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Telephone: 704-341-5413
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Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
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Enjoy the exciting and educational Flights of the Forest show. Viewers can feel the wind from a raptor's wing it they flies overhead. Participants must be 7 or older; children 16 and...

Cost: Adults $12, Seniors $10, Students $8

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Telephone: 704-875-6521
Contact Name: Michele Houck
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This bar + arcade hybrid has over 20 pinball machines, 30 arcade games and other games rotating monthly. On Saturdays and Sundays from noon-5pm the bar opens up to all ages with a parent...

Where:
Abari Game Bar
1721 N. Davidson St
, NC
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Telephone: 980-430-4587
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Experience this educational and entertaining family event. The festival showcases diversity of Indian dance, food, art, music and Bollywood entertainment. Audience members will enjoy yoga,...

Cost: $6 in advance; free for children younger than 10

Where:
Belk Theater
130 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Sponsor: India Association of Charlotte
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Enjoy a variety of "nose to beak" encounters with some of the most interesting raptor species. Purchase tickets online up until 24 hours before the encounter, and in the Visitor Center up...

Cost: Adults $12, Seniors $10, Students $8

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Telephone: 704-875-6521
Contact Name: Michele Houck
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Beginner and experienced yogis are all welcome to join the free practice at the southeast end of Independence Park in front of King's College Bring a mat or towel, some water and a few friends.

Cost: Free

Where:
Independence Park
300 Hawthorne Ln.
, NC
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Bring a picnic and enjoy live music. Every Sunday from Jun. 3-Aug. 26.

Cost: Free

Where:
Fourth Ward Park
301 N. Poplar St
, NC
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Bring comfy chairs, a blanket and picnic to enjoy music outdoors. Dates: April 22, May 6 and 20, June 10 and 17, July 4, and August 12 and 19.

Cost: Free

Where:
Davidson Village Green
Intersection of Main Street and Concord Road
, NC
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Corteo, which means cortege in Italian, is a joyous procession, a festive parade imagined by a clown. The show brings together the passion of the actor with the grace and power of the acrobat to...

Cost: Tickets start at $49

Where:
Spectrum Center
333 E Trade St.
, NC
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The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-372-6261
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This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
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Telephone: 704-636-2889
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Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Telephone: 704-866-6908
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It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
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Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
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Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
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Swim in the cool, deep water at Carrigan Farms Quarry. Ages 11 and under must wear a life jacket at all times in the water. Anyone 12 and older are eligible to take the swim test. Bring your rod...

Cost: $15 per person. Cash or check only.

Where:
Carrigan Farms Quarry
West Entrance
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC  28115
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More information

"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Experience interactive arts and science programs. Explore genetic experiments and activities, create a community artwork piece and more. Programs provided by Discovery Place and Brighter Days Arts...

Cost: Free

Where:
Beatties Ford Library
2412 Beatties Ford Rd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Let your kids discover the details of the museums galleries in a fun and challenging way. With two levels of difficulty this gallery activity invites participants of all ages to examine art work...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabarrus Arts Council
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-920-2787
Website »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Preschool-age children can explore nature with songs, games, crafts, and play in Lost Hollow.

Cost: $10 per parent/child; $6 for each additional participant

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1252
Website »

More information

Registered kids receive two free games of bowling each day of the Kids Bowl Free (KBF) summer program! Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the KBF program....

Cost: Free

Where:
10 Park Lanes
1700 Montford Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend quality time with your kids at Strike City during Kids Bowl Free! There's no pre-registration required. Offer is valid for children ages 10 and younger. Children must be accompanied by...

Cost: Free

Where:
StrikeCity
210 East Trade St.
#D-164
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Bring your children to the Garden for a morning of sensory exploration, singing and fun. Explore colors, shapes, movement, texture and a host of other topics in a safe and nurturing environment.

Cost: $10 per parent/child; $6 for each additional participant

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1252
Website »

More information

This program is designed to engage young African American males in a variety of fun and educational activities to develop a positive sense of identity and improve character. Young men will learn...

Cost: Free

Where:
Wallace Pruitt Recreation Center
440 Wesley Heights Way
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-314-1114
Website »

More information

Wear your pjs on the second Monday of each month for a family storytime that is perfect for bedtime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Plaza Midwood Library
1623 Central Ave
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-6200
Website »

More information

The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
Website »

More information

Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Website »

More information

Swim in the cool, deep water at Carrigan Farms Quarry. Ages 11 and under must wear a life jacket at all times in the water. Anyone 12 and older are eligible to take the swim test. Bring your rod...

Cost: $15 per person. Cash or check only.

Where:
Carrigan Farms Quarry
West Entrance
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC  28115
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Homeschool families, come enjoy discounted Museum admission and explore Tyrannosaurs: Meet the Family. Immerse yourself in Flying Monsters in IMAX, learn more about Homeschool Programs, and...

Cost: Member: $3 for TRex, $7 for TRex + IMAX; Public: $11 for TRex, $15 TRex + IMAX

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come listen to the adorable book, "Where's the Party" before frosting your own party cupcake! Also make a take-home craft.

Cost: $6 per child; parents free

Where:
SAS Cupcakes
9941 Rea Road
Ste. C
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Celebrate a successful Summer Break with Casey Nees of Casey's Laugh and Learn. Casey's show blends science and storytelling.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mountain Island Library
4420 Hoyt Galvin Way
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come and learn the real story about Sally Hemings and her connection to Thomas Jefferson from Hemings Family descendant, Gayle Jessup White, Monitcello’s Community Engagement Officer. Jessup...

Cost: $15 general admission; $10 for members; Free for Harper-Roddey Society

Where:
Harvey B. Gantt Center
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Harvey B. Gantt Center
Website »

More information

This class is designed to introduce those who have never kayaked to the sport of kayaking. We will meet at the Rush Pavilion and start by covering appropriate gear for kayaking and how to fit it,...

Cost: $25

Where:
Anne Springs Close Greenway
2573 Lake Haigler Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Let your kids discover the details of the museums galleries in a fun and challenging way. With two levels of difficulty this gallery activity invites participants of all ages to examine art work...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabarrus Arts Council
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-920-2787
Website »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

Big Air Trampoline Park opens its doors for little ones to jump at their own speed and comfort level. Without the older kids around, the toddlers feel right at home on all the attractions. Big...

Cost: $8

Where:
Big Air Trampoline Park
2408 Sardis Road N.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Amazing Butterflies Maze, produced and traveled by Minotaur Mazes, is an interactive learning experience within a maze setting. Divided into themed sections, the maze encompasses the life journey...

Cost: $8 Adults, $5 Youth, Free to members & ages 3 & younger

Where:
Culture & Heritage Museums of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-329-2121
Website »

More information

This parade of fashion explores the relationship between changes in the world and changes in clothing. The exhibit highlights some of the peaks of Kings Mountain fashion and showcases some hidden...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kings Mountain Historical Museum
100 East Mountain St.
Kings Mountain , NC  28086
View map »


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Regal Entertainment Cinemas, which includes Regal Phillips Place Stadium 10, Regal Starlight Stadium 14 - Charlotte, Regal Stonecrest At Piper Glen Stadium 22, Regal...

Cost: $1

Where:
Regal Entertainment Cinemas
, NC


Website »

More information

The Summer Movie Magic program is a collection of family and kid films (typically rated PG). Shows run every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday throughout the summer.

Cost: $1

Where:
Redstone 14
9650 RedStone Drive
Indian Land, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. Let your little ones to discover the joy of being active while bouncing under the supervision of their parents and without...

Cost: $8

Where:
Sky Zone
10200 Centrum Pkwy.
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Registered kids receive two free games of bowling each day of the Kids Bowl Free (KBF) summer program! Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the KBF program....

Cost: Free

Where:
10 Park Lanes
1700 Montford Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend quality time with your kids at Strike City during Kids Bowl Free! There's no pre-registration required. Offer is valid for children ages 10 and younger. Children must be accompanied by...

Cost: Free

Where:
StrikeCity
210 East Trade St.
#D-164
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy some music with your meal at Romare Bearden Park's Music Box Lunch, which occurs every Tuesday and Friday afternoon.

Cost: Free

Where:
Romare Bearden Park
300 S. Church St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-348-5770
Website »

More information

Victory Bounce sessions at BounceU of Matthews occur every second Tuesday of the month. Every Victory Bounce session has free admission, which also includes siblings.

Cost: Free

Where:
BounceU of Matthews
9129 Monroe Rd Ste 145-150
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-921-8771
Website »

More information

The Rosa Parks Farmers Market kicks off its third season on Tuesday, June 5. Shoppers can enjoy more food options, a bigger location, and better hours! Visit the market every Tuesday from June...

Cost: Free

Where:
Rosa Parks Farmers Market
1600 West Trade St.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Mecklenburg County Public Health
Telephone: 704-617-9319
Contact Name: Elliott Royal
Website »

More information

Get free entry to The Schiele Museum every second Tuesday of the month from 4-8 p.m.

Cost: Free

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 East Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Duke Energy
Telephone: 704-866-6900
Website »

More information

The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
Website »

More information

Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Website »

More information

Swim in the cool, deep water at Carrigan Farms Quarry. Ages 11 and under must wear a life jacket at all times in the water. Anyone 12 and older are eligible to take the swim test. Bring your rod...

Cost: $15 per person. Cash or check only.

Where:
Carrigan Farms Quarry
West Entrance
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC  28115
View map »


Website »

More information

Cinemark Tinseltown USA in Salisbury offers $1 movies as part of the Summer Movie Clubhouse. To save even more money, buy the bundle of all 10 weeks worth of movies for just $5. Check the...

Cost: $1

Where:
Cinemark Tinseltown USA
305 Faith Road
Salisbury, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The Gem Theatre's summer movie program allows children to see a $1 movie on Tuesdays at 10 a.m. or 12:30 p.m. These showtimes feature some of last year's blockbusters, but...

Cost: $1

Where:
Gem Theater
111 West 1st St.
Kannapolis, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
View map »


Website »

More information

Victory Bounce sessions at BounceU of Charlotte occur every second Tuesday of the month. Every Victory Bounce session has free admission, which also includes siblings. Times change every month,...

Cost: Free

Where:
BounceU of Charlotte
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
Suite 300
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-921-8771
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Certified technicians will check and help families install carseats. No appointment necessary. Bring your vehicle, seat and if possible the child for the most assistance. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews Police Department
1201 Crews Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Let your kids discover the details of the museums galleries in a fun and challenging way. With two levels of difficulty this gallery activity invites participants of all ages to examine art work...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabarrus Arts Council
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-920-2787
Website »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

A technician will help you learn how to install your seat correctly in your vehicle. Bring your child, seat, and vehicle and plan to spend at least 20 minutes. No appointment required.  

Cost: Free

Where:
Freedom Division office of Charlotte Mecklenburg Police
4150 Wilkinson Blvd
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Amazing Butterflies Maze, produced and traveled by Minotaur Mazes, is an interactive learning experience within a maze setting. Divided into themed sections, the maze encompasses the life journey...

Cost: $8 Adults, $5 Youth, Free to members & ages 3 & younger

Where:
Culture & Heritage Museums of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-329-2121
Website »

More information

This parade of fashion explores the relationship between changes in the world and changes in clothing. The exhibit highlights some of the peaks of Kings Mountain fashion and showcases some hidden...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kings Mountain Historical Museum
100 East Mountain St.
Kings Mountain , NC  28086
View map »


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Regal Entertainment Cinemas, which includes Regal Phillips Place Stadium 10, Regal Starlight Stadium 14 - Charlotte, Regal Stonecrest At Piper Glen Stadium 22, Regal...

Cost: $1

Where:
Regal Entertainment Cinemas
, NC


Website »

More information

The Summer Movie Magic program is a collection of family and kid films (typically rated PG). Shows run every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday throughout the summer.

Cost: $1

Where:
Redstone 14
9650 RedStone Drive
Indian Land, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Registered kids receive two free games of bowling each day of the Kids Bowl Free (KBF) summer program! Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the KBF program....

Cost: Free

Where:
10 Park Lanes
1700 Montford Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend quality time with your kids at Strike City during Kids Bowl Free! There's no pre-registration required. Offer is valid for children ages 10 and younger. Children must be accompanied by...

Cost: Free

Where:
StrikeCity
210 East Trade St.
#D-164
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Bring your lawn chairs, drinks and snacks, and be prepared to dance at this weekly event that features the music of local bands. Occurs Wednesdays with the exception of July Fourth. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Romare Bearden Park
300 S. Church St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
Website »

More information

Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Website »

More information

Swim in the cool, deep water at Carrigan Farms Quarry. Ages 11 and under must wear a life jacket at all times in the water. Anyone 12 and older are eligible to take the swim test. Bring your rod...

Cost: $15 per person. Cash or check only.

Where:
Carrigan Farms Quarry
West Entrance
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC  28115
View map »


Website »

More information

Cinemark Movies 10 in Matthews offers $1 movies on Wednesdays at 10 a.m. as part of the Summer Movie Clubhouse. To save even more money, buy the bundle of all 10 weeks worth of...

Cost: $1

Where:
Cinemark Movies 10
9508 Northeast Ct.
Matthews, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Cinemark Tinseltown USA in Salisbury offers $1 movies as part of the Summer Movie Clubhouse. To save even more money, buy the bundle of all 10 weeks worth of movies for just $5. Check the...

Cost: $1

Where:
Cinemark Tinseltown USA
305 Faith Road
Salisbury, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy a free family-friendly evening of arts, culture and tasty food samples from diverse local restaurants. Experience pop-up theatre, dance, visual art, interactive experiences, science and music...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Green
119 South Main St.
Davidson, NC  28036
View map »


Sponsor: Arts and Science Council
Telephone: 704-335-3035
Contact Name: Krista Terrell
Website »

More information

Pre-sale Thurs., 7-9pm, $10 admission; Fri., 9am-1pm and 3-8pm; Sat., 8am-noon. (half-price sale) No bags, strollers, or carts allowed.

Where:
First Baptist Church Indian Trail
732 Indian Trail Fairview Road
Indian Trail, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Let your kids discover the details of the museums galleries in a fun and challenging way. With two levels of difficulty this gallery activity invites participants of all ages to examine art work...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabarrus Arts Council
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-920-2787
Website »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

Big Air Trampoline Park opens its doors for little ones to jump at their own speed and comfort level. Without the older kids around, the toddlers feel right at home on all the attractions. Big...

Cost: $8

Where:
Big Air Trampoline Park
2408 Sardis Road N.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Amazing Butterflies Maze, produced and traveled by Minotaur Mazes, is an interactive learning experience within a maze setting. Divided into themed sections, the maze encompasses the life journey...

Cost: $8 Adults, $5 Youth, Free to members & ages 3 & younger

Where:
Culture & Heritage Museums of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-329-2121
Website »

More information

This parade of fashion explores the relationship between changes in the world and changes in clothing. The exhibit highlights some of the peaks of Kings Mountain fashion and showcases some hidden...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kings Mountain Historical Museum
100 East Mountain St.
Kings Mountain , NC  28086
View map »


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

The Summer Movie Magic program is a collection of family and kid films (typically rated PG). Shows run every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday throughout the summer.

Cost: $1

Where:
Redstone 14
9650 RedStone Drive
Indian Land, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. Let your little ones to discover the joy of being active while bouncing under the supervision of their parents and without...

Cost: $8

Where:
Sky Zone
10200 Centrum Pkwy.
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Registered kids receive two free games of bowling each day of the Kids Bowl Free (KBF) summer program! Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the KBF program....

Cost: Free

Where:
10 Park Lanes
1700 Montford Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy transportation themed stories, plus a hands-on activity complimenting the book.

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
411 S. Salisbury Ave.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Stop by the store for live musical entertainment as Brik performs for the children. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Toys and Company
242 S. Sharon Amity Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend quality time with your kids at Strike City during Kids Bowl Free! There's no pre-registration required. Offer is valid for children ages 10 and younger. Children must be accompanied by...

Cost: Free

Where:
StrikeCity
210 East Trade St.
#D-164
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The Evening Farmers Market supports local farmers by providing a location to bring customers and farmers together. Everything sold at the market is locally grown, baked, or crafted by the vendor....

Cost: Free

Where:
Pecan Park
136 North Center St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy live music on Thursdays in June, July and August. Concerts will take place in the Comporium Amphitheater, a popular Greenway venue that features lawn-style seating beneath a shady tree...

Cost: $5 per person (free for members); $5 per car for parking

Where:
Anne Springs Close Greenway
291 Dairy Barn Ln
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-547-4575
Website »

More information

All ages are welcome for these hands on clay pottery workshops. Join a Clayworks' teaching artist and learn how to roll, pinch, poke, slip and score clay to make a project that will last a...

Cost: Free

Where:
Scaleybark Library
101 Scaleybark Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-6400
Website »

More information

Enjoy summer nights with outdoor music. Food and alcohol available to purchase. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Crossing Paths Park
120 Blythe Dr.
Indian Trail, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Jam out on the third Thursday of every month to a different band. Enjoy the warm weather while rocking out in Crossing Paths Park. Guests can also enjoy lawn games, a kids playground, wine and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crossing Paths Park
120 Blythe Dr.
Indian Trail, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy food, beverages, and live music at this weekly summer concert series.  There are additional activities like yoga or organized runs on certain nights before the show starts.

Cost: Free; $6 parking fee

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-391-3900
Website »

More information

The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
Website »

More information

Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Website »

More information

Swim in the cool, deep water at Carrigan Farms Quarry. Ages 11 and under must wear a life jacket at all times in the water. Anyone 12 and older are eligible to take the swim test. Bring your rod...

Cost: $15 per person. Cash or check only.

Where:
Carrigan Farms Quarry
West Entrance
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC  28115
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Website »

More information

"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
View map »


Website »

More information

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Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Drop into the Mt. Pleasant Library for The League of Extraordinary Legos. The library will provide the LEGOs; kids provide the imagination! The event now includes DUPLOs.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mt. Pleasant Library
8556 Cook St.
Mt. Pleasant, NC
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Website »

More information

Come out and cool off at the afternoon Knights game against the Louisville Bats. Brings the kids for the double-lane slip and slide, a big kahuna wet slide, a misting station, kiddie pools,...

Cost: $8+

Where:
BB&T Ballpark
324 S. Mint St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Are you ready to squish, knead, and create new things? Visit the Children's Room at the Kannapolis Library for Play-Doh Lab. The library will provide the supplies; kids provide the imagination!

Cost: Free

Where:
Kannapolis Library
850 Mountain St.
Kannapolis, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Sponsored by Friends of Kannapolis Library
Website »

More information

Celebrate the start of the 2018 fall season with Windy Hill's delicious cider!

Cost: Free

Where:
Windy Hill Orchard and Cider Mill
1860 Black Hwy.
York, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Concerts start at 7pm; movies start at dusk. June 1: Coconut Groove June 22: "Wonder" June 28: Charlotte Symphony, begins at 8:15pm July 13: Red Dirt Revival July...

Cost: Free

Where:
Pineville Lake Park
1000 Johnston Drive
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Pre-sale Thurs., 7-9pm, $10 admission; Fri., 9am-1pm and 3-8pm; Sat., 8am-noon. (half-price sale) No bags, strollers, or carts allowed.

Where:
First Baptist Church Indian Trail
732 Indian Trail Fairview Road
Indian Trail, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Let your kids discover the details of the museums galleries in a fun and challenging way. With two levels of difficulty this gallery activity invites participants of all ages to examine art work...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabarrus Arts Council
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-920-2787
Website »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Amazing Butterflies Maze, produced and traveled by Minotaur Mazes, is an interactive learning experience within a maze setting. Divided into themed sections, the maze encompasses the life journey...

Cost: $8 Adults, $5 Youth, Free to members & ages 3 & younger

Where:
Culture & Heritage Museums of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-329-2121
Website »

More information

This parade of fashion explores the relationship between changes in the world and changes in clothing. The exhibit highlights some of the peaks of Kings Mountain fashion and showcases some hidden...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kings Mountain Historical Museum
100 East Mountain St.
Kings Mountain , NC  28086
View map »


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Join the N.C. Transportation Museum for hands-on activities every Friday! Climb aboard a steam engine. Build a flying machine, and launch it in a wind tunnel. Construct a refrigerator car to...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
411 S. Salisbury Ave.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Registered kids receive two free games of bowling each day of the Kids Bowl Free (KBF) summer program! Select bowling centers and schools around the country are participating in the KBF program....

Cost: Free

Where:
10 Park Lanes
1700 Montford Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend quality time with your kids at Strike City during Kids Bowl Free! There's no pre-registration required. Offer is valid for children ages 10 and younger. Children must be accompanied by...

Cost: Free

Where:
StrikeCity
210 East Trade St.
#D-164
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy some music with your meal at Romare Bearden Park's Music Box Lunch, which occurs every Tuesday and Friday afternoon.

Cost: Free

Where:
Romare Bearden Park
300 S. Church St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-348-5770
Website »

More information

This family-friendly event features craft brews, wine, cider, live music and the best food trucks in Charlotte. Bring the whole family, including your dogs. Along...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sycamore Brewing
2161 Hawkins St.
Charlotte, NC  28203
View map »


Website »

More information

Starting in May and running through October, come out to Camp North End in the Boileryard on Friday nights for food and music. Children and leashed pets welcome!

Cost: Free

Where:
Boileryard - Camp North End
1824 Statesville Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

This food truck rally is family and dog-friendly and features 10-15 area food trucks, live music, and a gated kids' playground. 

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Trinity Presbyterian Church
3115 Providence Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy food trucks, Old Town restaurants, local beers, wine, children's activities, and live music.  

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Fountain Park
E. Main St.
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop off your children for a night of fun while you hit the town. Activities include laser tag, jump-n-play, rock climbing, mini bowling, ropes courses, bumper cars, and arcade games. Children...

Cost: $25 online, $30 at the door

Where:
Sports Connection - Ballantyne or Northlake Locations
, NC


Website »

More information

Come out to Downtown Rock Hill's Fountain Park to enjoy Food Truck Friday, which begins May 18 and runs through October. The event occurs every third Friday of the month and includes both live...

Cost: Free

Where:
Old Town Rock Hill
300 E. Main St.
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy food, beverages, and live music at this weekly summer concert series.  There are additional activities like yoga or organized runs on certain nights before the show starts.

Cost: Free; $6 parking fee

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-391-3900
Website »

More information

Come listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer.

Cost: Free

Where:
The Green at Promenade on Providence
corner of Providence Road and Interstate 485
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer at Stonecrest Shopping Center.

Cost: Free

Where:
Stonecrest Shopping Center
7900 Rea Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Each Friday and Saturday, starting May 25 through September 1st, local favorites return to Blakeney Shopping Center and bring fun and music for the entire family. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Village Green at Blakeney
Ardrey Kell and Rea Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Do not miss these outdoor performances every Friday night this summer at Spirit Square. Events will be moved indoors if there is inclement weather.  Concessions and beverages will be...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Square at Spirit Square
345 North College St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Join Birkdale Village for live music every Friday and Saturday night from June 1 to Aug. 25. Bring a chair or a blanket.

Cost: Free

Where:
Birkdale Village
8712 Lindholm Drive
Ste. 206
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Mooresville Parks and Recreation presents Movies on Main! All movies will be shown on the Town Hall lawn in Downtown Mooresville. Movies start at dark, and concessions are available for purchase...

Cost: Free

Where:
Town Hall Lawn
413 North Main St.
Mooresville, NC
View map »

More information

Come out to enjoy live music! July 13 - The Tams, July 27 - Jim Quick, Aug. 17 - Too Much Sylvia, Aug. 31. - The Continental Divide, Sept. 28 - Steve Owens and Summertime Band

Cost: Free

Where:
Downtown Mount Holly
South Main St.
Mount Holly, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
Website »

More information

Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Website »

More information

"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
View map »


Website »

More information

Davidson Community Players’ The Connie Company tackles themes of loneliness, desire, sexuality, repression, and the longing for freedom in its Teen Summer Stock Series’ production of...

Cost: $10

Where:
Armour Street Theatre
307 Armour Street
Davidson, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-892-7953
Website »

More information

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The 9th Annual OrthoCarolina 10K Classic presented by Performance Therapy- Food Truck and Beer Fest, is the areas premier 10K running event. The OrthoCarolina Classic will also feature a...

Cost: See website for 5k and 10k pricing

Where:
OrthoCarolina
1915 Randolph Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The art sale is a fundraising effort and an initiative to provide alternative venues for artists to sell their works. Come see their works at the Iredell Arts Council parking lot, weather...

Cost: Free

Where:
Iredell Arts Council
203 South Meeting St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Shop thousands of gently-used items, including children's and baby clothing, equipment, furniture, toys, games, and maternity wear. 8:30am-noon. $2 early-bird shopping at 7:30am. Half-price...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Park Expo and Conference Center
800 Briar Creek Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

In this Safe Sitter Certification Class, 11-15 year olds will learn how to supervise children, recognize safety hazards, handle first-aid situations, play age-appropriate games, change diapers,...

Cost: $65 for YMCA members, $95 for others

Where:
Morrison Family YMCA
9504 Bryant Farms Road
Charlotte, NC  28277
View map »


Telephone: 704-716-4609
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of rocks and minerals from around the world. See specimens both common and rare while discovering how the science of earth is ever-changing.  This showcase of the...

Cost: $7, included with museum admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Reedy Creek Nature Center presents the 11th Annual Hummingbird Festival! Come out for family-friendly activities, which include but are not limited to, bir​d banding, story telling, birding...

Cost: Free

Where:
Reedy Creek Nature Preserve
2900 Rocky River Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Design beautiful keepsakes that will be cherished by all. The first one-hour workshop begins at 10am, and the second begins at noon. Members receive a 15 percent discount. Workshop is not...

Cost: $15 for one child with one parent, $3 per additional participant

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come meet our staff and enjoy free, 30-minute trial classes of our 2018/2019 schedule!

Cost: Free

Where:
Charlotte Cirque and Dance Center
9315-E Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Disney Junior's animated family comedy "Fancy Nancy” debuts July 13. Come play to kick-off the new show and the back-to-school season. Activities will include a DJ, balloon twister,...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Visit Northlake Mall for an end of summer celebration, and check out the latest back to school styles from our retailers. See website for entertainment schedule.

Cost: Free

Where:
Northlake Mall
6801 Northlake Mall Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come help Goldfish Swim School Charlotte celebrate its Grand Opening! Enjoy family swim, games and refreshments. This event is free and open to all.

Cost: Free

Where:
Goldfish Swim School Charlotte
13403 S. Ridge Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Pickers, come jam informally around the square! All playing levels are welcome Not a picker? Bring your family and friends, and enjoy the bluegrass music. Check out the kids crafts, snacks, and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Earl Scruggs Center
103 S. Lafayette St.
Shelby, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The 5K run/walk will start and finish at Midwood International and Cultural Center through the beautiful Plaza Midwood neighborhood. Join us for a celebration after the race, with music, prizes,...

Cost: See website for fee schedule

Where:
Midwood International and Cultural Center
1817 Central Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kick off the school year with an old school Pep Rally.  Independence High School athletes, cheerleaders, band, boosters, parents, faculty and staff will be ready to start the 2018 school year...

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Hill Town Hall
4430 Mint Hill Village Lane
Mint Hill, NC  28227
View map »


Telephone: 704-545-2335
Website »

More information

Diverse Groove Band will take the Waverly Terrace Stage at 7 p.m. Sugar Creek Brewing will be serving in The Terrace Beer Garden during the show. The Terrace is located in front...

Cost: Free

Where:
Waverly
Providence Road and Ardrey Kell Road
Charlotte, NC  28277
View map »

More information

Kids of all ages and grown-ups, too, can learn to ride a bike using the tried-and-true “balance bike” method.

Cost: Free

Where:
Wallace Pruitt Recreation Center
440 Tuckaseegee Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Pre-sale Thurs., 7-9pm, $10 admission; Fri., 9am-1pm and 3-8pm; Sat., 8am-noon. (half-price sale) No bags, strollers, or carts allowed.

Where:
First Baptist Church Indian Trail
732 Indian Trail Fairview Road
Indian Trail, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Wrap up Charlotte Pride Week at the Charlotte Pride Parade and Festival! The parade is on Sunday, Aug.19. in Uptown. Sat., noon-10 p.m.; Sun., noon-6 p.m.

Where:
Uptown Charlotte
N. Tryon Street
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come check out locally owned cars out for display every third Saturday of the month. Trump Bakery will provide coffee and doughnuts for the event.

Cost: Free

Where:
Trump National Golf Club
137 Vestal Drive
Mooresville, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Trump International Realty and Trump National Golf Club Charlotte
Website »

More information

The market runs from June through September. Multiple vendors offer fresh produce, as well as a selection of homemade goods like salsa, butter, honey, bread, eggs, cheese, soaps, cookies, and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Liberty Park
225 E. Iredell Ave.
Mooresville, NC  28115
View map »

More information

Dino Safari:  A Prehistoric Adventure Travel back in time on a journey through the Mesozoic Era – the age of dinosaurs. See full-bodied models of incredible creatures that time...

Cost: $6-$7, children under age 3 admitted free. Includes museum admission.

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC  28054
View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Beloved children’s books will come alive with Storyland: A Trip Through Childhood Favorites, an imaginative, book-based experience for children ages birth to 8 years old. Storyland...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe & Joan Martin Center
300 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4600
Website »

More information

The wild is full of surprises around every corner! Learn about the unique, bizarre, and interesting adaptations plants develop in order to survive in different habitats.

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. Let your little ones to discover the joy of being active while bouncing under the supervision of their parents and without...

Cost: $8

Where:
Sky Zone
10200 Centrum Pkwy.
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come enjoy fascinating photos, memorabilia, and stories during 12 months of rotating special displays at the Billy Graham Library as part of the celebration...

Cost: Free

Where:
Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-401-3200
Website »

More information

Amazing Butterflies Maze, produced and traveled by Minotaur Mazes, is an interactive learning experience within a maze setting. Divided into themed sections, the maze encompasses the life journey...

Cost: $8 Adults, $5 Youth, Free to members & ages 3 & younger

Where:
Culture & Heritage Museums of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-329-2121
Website »

More information

This parade of fashion explores the relationship between changes in the world and changes in clothing. The exhibit highlights some of the peaks of Kings Mountain fashion and showcases some hidden...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kings Mountain Historical Museum
100 East Mountain St.
Kings Mountain , NC  28086
View map »


Telephone: 704-739-1019
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Now through September 9, 2018 the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art presents Alfred Manessier, an exhibition of paintings and prints by an artist who sought to create contemplative images where the...

Cost: Included with admission

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
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If you play an instrument, or just like to listen to live music, come out to the Visitors’ Center in downtown Statesville each Saturday morning. All levels of music ability and anyone who...

Cost: Free

Where:
Statesville Visitors Center
118 West Broad St.
Statesville, NC
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Guests include Marvel Comics legends, Vic Carrabotta and Rick Leonardi, with more than 50 additional artists, writers, and media guests. Shop for toys and collectibles that kids of all ages will...

Cost: $5 per day; Ages 12 and younger free

Where:
Embassy Suites Concord Convention Center
5400 John Q. Hammons Drive NW
Concord, NC  28027
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Join us for Open Sailing! Attendees can check out the Sunfish and practice their sailing skills. Children ages 11 and under will need to be accompanied by a competent sailor. A short test will...

Cost: $20 for members; $30 for non members

Where:
Lake Norman YMCA
21300 Davidson St.
Cornelius, NC
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Geared towards children ages 3 and younger, this class will focus on movement and energy release. Parent participation required.  

Cost: $6 per class

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
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Telephone: 704-829-1294
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Enjoy the exciting and educational Flights of the Forest show. Viewers can feel the wind from a raptor's wing it they flies overhead. Participants must be 7 or older; children 16 and...

Cost: Adults $12, Seniors $10, Students $8

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Telephone: 704-875-6521
Contact Name: Michele Houck
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This bar + arcade hybrid has over 20 pinball machines, 30 arcade games and other games rotating monthly. On Saturdays and Sundays from noon-5pm the bar opens up to all ages with a parent...

Where:
Abari Game Bar
1721 N. Davidson St
, NC
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Telephone: 980-430-4587
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Music and Movement activities for ages one, two and three! All ages are welcome to attend, and infants receive free admission. Come jam to stories and songs!

Cost: $2 per child

Where:
UWI- Kidz Greenhouse Cafe
5237 Albemarle Road
Suites 211-213
, NC
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Sponsor: United World Initiative's
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Enjoy a variety of "nose to beak" encounters with some of the most interesting raptor species. Purchase tickets online up until 24 hours before the encounter, and in the Visitor Center up...

Cost: Adults $12, Seniors $10, Students $8

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Telephone: 704-875-6521
Contact Name: Michele Houck
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Come eat, drink, and be merry at Tega Cay's Summer Food Truck Rally! Expect children's inflatables and live music, so bring your dancing shoes. Just be sure to leave your dogs and grills at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Runde Park
5116 Windward Drive
Tega Cay, SC
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Enjoy food, beverages, and live music at this weekly summer concert series.  There are additional activities like yoga or organized runs on certain nights before the show starts.

Cost: Free; $6 parking fee

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-391-3900
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Come listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer.

Cost: Free

Where:
The Green at Promenade on Providence
corner of Providence Road and Interstate 485
, NC
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Listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer at Stonecrest Shopping Center.

Cost: Free

Where:
Stonecrest Shopping Center
7900 Rea Road
, NC
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Each Friday and Saturday, starting May 25 through September 1st, local favorites return to Blakeney Shopping Center and bring fun and music for the entire family. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Village Green at Blakeney
Ardrey Kell and Rea Road
, NC
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Join Birkdale Village for live music every Friday and Saturday night from June 1 to Aug. 25. Bring a chair or a blanket.

Cost: Free

Where:
Birkdale Village
8712 Lindholm Drive
Ste. 206
Huntersville, NC
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The Year of the Engineer is an initiative celebrating the creativity and imagination of engineers. It includes the opening of an all-new Thinker Space lab and exhibition Think it Up, along with the...

Cost: $13-$17

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-372-6261
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This exhibit tells the story of the coming of railroads after the Civil War and the impact they had on the life, economy, culture, folklore, music and landscape of the mountains. Using videos,...

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

Where:
N.C. Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr.
Spencer, NC
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Telephone: 704-636-2889
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Creepy Nature is designed to share the actual science of weird and unusual plants and animals. This exhibit features horror fiction concepts like vampires, zombies, mummies, and alien...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Telephone: 704-866-6908
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It’s a pollinators’ paradise this summer as Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden opens two major seasonal exhibitions that celebrate the importance, beauty and majesty of pollinators. After...

Cost: Admission for Garden members is free, $12.95 for adults

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Rd.
Belmont, NC
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Telephone: 704-829-1286
Contact Name: Stephanie Wisnet
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Discovery Place Science presents Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, an innovative, multimedia experience showcasing never-before-seen dinosaurs in the Tyrannosaurs family tree. The...

Cost: $16-$20, free for children under 2, includes museum admission.

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
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"Mentors and Heroes" includes over thirty framed black and white portraits of David Holt's many musical mentors and heroes from the 1970s to the early 2000s.  The exhibit...

Cost: $4-$12; Included with general admission

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC  28159
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Davidson Community Players’ The Connie Company tackles themes of loneliness, desire, sexuality, repression, and the longing for freedom in its Teen Summer Stock Series’ production of...

Cost: $10

Where:
Armour Street Theatre
307 Armour Street
Davidson, NC
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Telephone: 704-892-7953
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Calling all poets, singers, storytellers, vocalists, musicians - every third Saturday in Indian Trail is Open Mic Night!   Preregistration is strongly encouraged, but performers may...

Cost: Free

Where:
Town Hall
315 Matthews Indain Trail Road
Indian Trail, NC
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Annual Guides

G.P.S. [Go.Play.See]

Your guide to raising kids in the Queen City, plus our 2018 Readers' Favorites for places to play, explore and learn with the kids.

Education Guide

A comprehensive guide to independent, private, charter and public schools in Cabarrus, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Union and York counties.
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