Funeral Etiquette

What you should and should not say, wear and do.


Published:

When I was about 8-years-old, my great-grandfather died and I remember going to his funeral. My mother was wise enough to give me the "heads up" about what was going to happen, what I was going to see and how I should behave in this situation.

Funerals and memorial services are such emotional times when there is a death in our own family, but it’s also very difficult to know what to do and how to behave when a friend has lost a loved one.

We all want to do the right thing for our family and others during a time of loss, but many people have questions like:

  • Should I bring my children to a funeral service?
  • What am I supposed to say to the grieving family at the funeral home?
  • Do I have to wear black to the funeral?

Below are some tips around funeral etiquette that I hope will help, and if you click HERE, you may watch my segment on Charlotte Today on this topic.


FUNERALS AND CHILDREN

Appropriate age:

  • There are no hard and fast rules in funeral etiquette that dictate whether children should or should not attend a funeral. But keep in mind, all little ones can be quite noisy and disruptive and a funeral is not the appropriate time or place for this to be happening so you decide what’s best.
  • If the child is very young they may not fully understand what is happening and may not benefit from attendance. In fact, a little one may feel confused and upset if they see people distressed and crying. Only you will be able to judge just how much the child can take in and understand without it being confused and afraid

Help children understand:

  • If the body will be viewed either at a visitation or at the funeral itself, let the child know this in advance. Explain what the casket and the body will look like. If the deceased is to be cremated, explain what cremation means and what will happen to the ashes.
  • Encourage your children to ask questions and talk openly about their feelings. The actual burial could be an upsetting experience for a child who has no idea what is happening or what to expect.
  • Help the child to understand why we have funerals. Children need to know that the funeral is a time of sadness because someone has died, a time to honor the person who died, a time to say a final goodbye, a time to help comfort and support each other and a time to affirm that life goes on.

ACKNOWLEDGING THE DEATH

Whether you are offering condolences by calling, sending a card or flowers or visiting, the important thing is to make a gesture that lets the family know you’re thinking of them and share their sorrow. (Although this appears to be changing slowly in today’s culture, such forms of communication as texts, emails and tweets are still too informal for expressing sympathy or offering condolences.)

When hearing the news do:

  • Be a good listener. Let friends and family talk about their loved one and their death. If they don’t want to talk about it, don’t pressure them. Focus on the survivor’s needs.
  • Refer to the deceased by name, and acknowledge his or her life.
  • Offer to help the person/family in any way, and if they want help, follow through.
  • Send flowers with a note (see suggestions for notes below) or offer a donation to a charity or an appropriate research organization. You can find this information usually in the obituary of the deceased.

Don’ts ...

  • Ask the family of the deceased to help YOU in any way, shape or form. The grieving family should not have to:
    • Console you
    • Give you detailed information on what happened
    • Help you with travel plans
  • Don’t take control of the situation. The grieving family needs control to help them work through grief.
  • Don’t bring up other people’s experiences. Let the bereaved focus on their loss.
  • Don’t pressure the family to clean out the deceased’s belongings. They need to do this in their own time.
  • Don’t expect things to be “back to normal” in a certain timeframe

MAKING CONDOLENCE CALLS

If you can’t visit in person, a telephone call expressing sympathy and offering condolences for the family is appropriate.

  • Don’t be surprised if the phone is answered by someone who is taking messages, or your call goes to voicemail. It may be too much of a burden for the family to answer each call individually. Your message of sympathy will still be valued and appreciated.
  • Keep your call brief. Remember, the family is likely receiving a large number of calls during a time of bereavement. Keep the focus on the bereaved. This is not the time to talk about yourself or to relate your own recent experience with losing a loved one or a dearly loved pet.
  • Be a good listener. The bereaved may want to vent or cry or grieve. Let them talk about their loved one and the death. If they don’t want to talk about it, don’t pressure them.
  • Focus on the survivor’s needs. Don’t ask questions about the circumstances or probe for details about the death.

SENDING SYMPATHY CARDS

  • A pre-printed sympathy card is the default choice for most people, and it’s an acceptable way to go. Consider, however, writing a personal note in the card.
  • Don’t be afraid to use the name of the deceased, to recall a fond memory, or to share a warm anecdote about how the person affected your life. Those remembrances will be treasured by the family and often are kept for years.
  • If you can’t attend the service, be sure to express your regrets in the card.
  • A special kind of acknowledgment for a Catholic family is a Mass condolence card—a greeting card that lets the family know a Mass will be said in memory of their loved one.
  • Those who are bereaved may have an especially difficult time during holidays such as Christmas, Valentine’s Day, or the deceased’s birthday or wedding anniversary. You can help by sending cards to acknowledge those special occasions or the anniversary of the death.

FUNERAL SERVICE ATTIRE

Because the nature of funerals and memorial services varies so widely today, attire isn’t limited to just black or dark gray. The exception may be when you’re a pallbearer or honorary pallbearer, in which case a dark suit is the usual attire unless the family requests something else. Remember, though, that it is a serious occasion and your attire should reflect that, especially if you are participating in the service. At the very least it should be clean, neat, and pressed as for any other important occasion.


BEFORE THE SERVICE

When attending a service, be on time and enter the house of worship or location where the funeral will be held as quietly as possible. If there are no ushers, remember that the seats closer to the front should be taken by very close friends, with acquaintances seating themselves in the middle or towards the rear.

If you arrive late, enter a row from a side aisle, not the center aisle. If a processional has begun, wait outside instead of trying to squeeze past those who are a part of the cortege and are waiting to walk down the aisle.

Please turn OFF your phone and DO NOT use it during the service!


DURING THE SERVICE

It’s simple: Sit quietly, and don’t get up during the service. The exception is when you have a cough that won’t stop or you have to quiet a crying or unruly child; in both cases, quickly go to the vestibule or lobby. If a eulogy or tribute to the deceased is sprinkled with humor, it’s fine to laugh, though not raucously.


OFFERING CONDOLENCES IN PERSON

It is appropriate and kind to let the family know how much you will miss the deceased, how dear she was, how they made the world a better place, or what an inspiration he was.

Use your own words to convey messages like these:

  • “I/We are thinking of you. I/we wish there were words to comfort you”
  • “I/We are shocked and saddened by your loss. We care and love you deeply.”
  • He/She was such a fine person.”
  • “What you’re going through must be very difficult.”
  • “It’s too bad he/she died. I will always remember him/her.”
  • “He/she lived a full life and was an inspiration to me and many others.”

What NOT to say…

It is inappropriate to make statements that imply that the death was for the best or that show disrespect for the deceased. It is also inappropriate to probe for details of the circumstances of the death or the person’s final moments. Be careful about making spiritual or religious references unless you know those sentiments will be well received.

Avoid clichés like …

  • “It’s probably a blessing.”
  • “I know just how you feel.”
  • “He’s at peace now.”
  • “God won’t give you more than you can handle.”
  • “At least he/she is no longer suffering.”
  • “It was her time.”

Don’t tell them what to do …

  • “You have to be strong now for your family (or business).”
  • “Stay busy to take your mind off things.”
  • “You’ll get over it in time and find somebody else.”
  • “You’re young and can have more children.”

AFTER THE FUNERAL

Bringing Food for the Bereaved

In many cultures, it is customary to bring food to the home of the deceased, since there probably will be many relatives arriving who need to be fed, and the family may have neither time nor energy to cook meals. Often the family’s church will organize the bringing of meals, or you can call ahead to see what is needed and when, so the family isn’t overwhelmed. Be sure to either use a disposable container or label your dish with your name and phone number if you need it back.

Follow Up

  • Keep in touch with the bereaved. Be there for them when they are ready.
  • Remember birthdays and anniversaries of the death.
  • Offer to clean, cook or do other chores.
  • If appropriate, find out about support groups for bereaved parents and have the leader call the grieving parent to talk.
  • Send cards frequently — even six months after the death.
  • Praise the bereaved for even small accomplishments.

 

If you have any etiquette questions please feel free to email me at aimee@finessewodlwide.com and please check out my website for information, videos, and etiquette tips – finesseworldwide.com.

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May 2019

Prior to opening to the general public, the museum will offer a preparatory session for those with sensory processing issues. Items like sound dampening materials and stress balls will also be...

Cost: $4-$12

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC
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Sponsor: North Carolina Transportation Museum
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Enjoy all-you-can-eat Italian food. Bring the kids to play in the Kid Zone with face painting and Italian lessons. Adults can enjoy live music, dance, prosecco, wine and Peroni beer.

Where:
Gateway Village Promenade
800 W. Trade St.
, NC
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Design a doodle bot, build with Makerspace Charlotte and celebrate the 75th Sunday Fun Day!

Cost: Children, free; adults, $6

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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Sunday is Family Day at the Bigleaf Magnolia Art and Gardens Festival. Register for a family workshop, or drop in to a creation station. Cost and suggested ages vary by activity.

Cost: $2+

Where:
UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
9090 Craver Road
, NC
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Sponsor: UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
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In the summer of 1775, Captain James Jack rode 450 miles to deliver the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence to Congress. In honor of his historic ride, The May 20th Society invites you to...

Cost: Free

Where:
Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
4150 Yancey Road
, NC
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Families will explore spring wildflowers in the nature preserve during this self-led scavenger hunt for prizes.

Cost: Free

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
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Put on your wellies, and reserve your spot for the tea party, which includes refreshments, crafts and cupcake-decorating.

Cost: $13.50

Where:
American Girl Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
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Sponsor: American Girl
Telephone: 877-247-5223
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Enjoy traditional tea fare and pink lemonade, as well as activities for children.

Cost: $25-$40

Where:
Wing Haven Gardens
248 Ridgewood Ave
, NC
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Telephone: 704-331-0664
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See a variety of European sports cars on April 28 and the third Sunday of every month from May through November. Rain days will be scheduled if needed.

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
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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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SUP board rentals include paddle, PFD and whistle, which are required while paddle boarding. Renters younger than 18 must have a parent or guardian with them on the water. Bring your dog for an...

Cost: $25 first hour, $14 additional hour

Where:
Windjammer Park
89999 Windjammer Drive
Tega Cay, SC
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Sponsor: The Goat Boater
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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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Experience creations including sculptures, photography, glass, paintings, ceramics, one-of-a-kind jewelry and mixed media while enjoying eateries and retailers of Birkdale Village.

Cost: Free

Where:
Birkdale Village
16805 Birkdale Commons Pkwy.
Huntersville, NC
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Meet a resident bird and an expert keeper in these half-hour sessions along the Raptor Trail. Saturdays 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., and Sundays 1 and 3 p.m.

Cost: $8-$12, children 3 and younger free

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
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On Saturdays and Sundays from noon-5pm, the arcade bar opens to all ages with a parent or guardian present.

Cost: Cost for games

Where:
Abari Game Bar
1721 N. Davidson St.
, NC
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Telephone: 980-430-4587
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The City is jazzing up Sunday afternoons with a new four-week jazz series. Food will be available for purchase.

Cost: Free

Where:
Veteran's Park
118 N. Main St.
Kannapolis, NC
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Cost: $10 per family

Where:
Hemby Program Center
9760 Happy Valley Drive
, NC
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Sponsor: Brace Family Y
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All ages are welcome to this open gym session with an adult. Enjoy trampolines, a foam pit and inflatables as a family.

Cost: $10 per family, cash only

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
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Telephone: 704-246-8611
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Families with special needs can enjoy lessons and activities tailored for persons with disabilities. Children's class at 9:30 and 11am. Teen class at 9:30 and 11am. Young adult class at...

Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews United Methodist Church
801 S. Trade St.
Matthews, NC
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Sponsor: MUMC
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Enjoy music outdoors with the family. Dates: April 28, May 5 and 19, June 2 and 9, July 4, August 4 and 25, and September 1 and 15.

Cost: Free

Where:
Davidson Village Green
Intersection of Main Street and Concord Road
, NC
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Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
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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 invaders....

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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Featuring more than 50 international artists and more than 100 works of art, Under Construction explores the growth of the collage technique and aesthetic in the work of Romare Bearden and his...

Cost: $15-$6; Free for children 4 and younger; Included in admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 South Tryon St.
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"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
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Shop for bargains at this spring consignment sale.

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Lake Norman
500 S. Main Street
Mooresville, NC
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Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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

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This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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Website »

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Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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The May 20th Society’s annual commemoration of the MeckDec signing includes military and Colonial re-enactors, historical readings, military parades and cannon firing in uptown...

Cost: Free

Where:
Independence Square
Trade and Tryon Streets
, NC
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Develop literacy and critical thinking skills through books and hands-on activities.

Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews Library
230 Matthews Station St.
Matthews, NC
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Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews Library
230 Matthews Station St.
Matthews, NC
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Cost: Free

Where:
Beatties Ford Road Regional Library
2412 Beatties Ford Road
, NC
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Telephone: 704-416-3000
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Cost: Free

Where:
University City Regional Library
301 E. W.T. Harris Blvd.
, NC
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Cost: Free

Where:
Cornelius Library
21105 Catawba Ave.
Cornelius, NC
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Cost: Free

Where:
Lake Wylie Public Library
185 Blucher Cir.
Lake Wylie, SC
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Every Monday, Sky High Sports has a special for little jumpers. The facility is still open during Munchkin Monday, so older guests may also be jumping. Munchkin Monday may be canceled on...

Cost: $4-$10

Where:
Sky High Sports
601 N. Polk St.
Pineville, NC
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Telephone: 704-889-5867
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Cost: $2; additional $5 entry fee for nonmembers

Where:
Anne Springs Close Greenway
194 Adventure Road
Fort Mill, SC
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Children ages 6 and younger can jump at a discounted rate, and for an additional $2, parents can jump too. All jumpers need to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for $2.

Cost: $6.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Website »

More information

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Cost: $5, cash only

Where:
Carolina Stars
1080 Maxwell Mill Road
Fort Mill, SC
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Telephone: 803-548-3441
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Cost: $7-$13, children younger than 2 free, included with admission

Where:
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
6500 S. New Hope Road
Belmont, NC
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Telephone: 704-825-4490
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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.

Cost: Free

Where:
Wallace Pruitt Recreation Center
440 Wesley Heights Way
, NC
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Telephone: 980-314-1114
Website »

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Explore various painting techniques, and express your imagination.  There will be no class on May 27 for Memorial Day.

Cost: $20

Where:
Berewick Recreation Center
5910 Dixie River Road
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Website »

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Enjoy stories, songs and movement activities, and wear pajamas! Milk and cookies will be served.

Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews Library
230 Matthews Station St.
Matthews, NC
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Kids will have fun doing unstructured gymnastics.

Cost: $10-$15, cash only

Where:
Carolina Stars
1080 Maxwell Mill Road
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-548-3441
Website »

More information

Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


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 invaders....

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
The Galleries
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

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Cost: Free

Where:
South County Regional Library
5801 Rea Road
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Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
University City Regional Library
301 E. W.T. Harris Blvd.
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View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
GoPro Motorplex
130 Motorplex Drive
Mooresville, NC
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Website »

More information

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Cost: $8, free for children younger than 2, includes museum admission

Where:
Discovery Place Nature
1658 Sterling Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

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Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes and Noble: Arboretum
3327 Pineville-Matthews Road
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View map »


Website »

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Cost: $8

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


Website »

More information

Children ages 6 and younger can jump at a discounted rate, and for an additional $2, parents can jump too. All jumpers need to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for $2.

Cost: $6.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy a story and craft activity in the Children’s Garden. Children can water vegetable plants, dig for worms and explore the gardens.

Cost: $10 per family, free for members

Where:
Children's Garden at Wing Haven
260 Ridgewood Ave.
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View map »


Website »

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Cost: $15

Where:
Tiny Blooms Yoga
15905 Brookway Drive
Suite 4106
Huntersville, NC  28078
View map »


Sponsor: Tiny Blooms Yoga
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Matthews Library
230 Matthews Station St.
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-5000
Website »

More information

Learn how to supervise children, recognize safety hazards, handle first-aid situations, play age-appropriate games, change diapers, carry out parents' instructions and discuss job...

Cost: $65-$95

Where:
Morrison Family YMCA
9405 Bryant Farms Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-716-4600
Website »

More information

Come make fun, kid-friendly campfire meals. Registration is required. May 21: Banana Boats June 18: Dogs in a Blanket July 16: Waffle Cone S’mores Aug. 20: Pizza Pies

Cost: $10-$15

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


Website »

More information

Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


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 invaders....

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

See the Cabarrus Arts Council's newest exhibition, "On Paper." The exhibition will feature a wide array of artwork including cut and sculpted paper, collage and works on paper by...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Galleries
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
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Discover the nature of local greenways and their importance to the environment in Mecklenburg County.

Cost: Free

Where:
McAlpine Regional Park
8711 Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discover nature through stories, crafts and activities related to the topic.

Cost: $4

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore the amazing world through stories, crafts and activities.

Cost: $6

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Participants will make ice cream in a bag while participating in some activities and games.

Cost: Free

Where:
Hickory Grove Recreation Center
6709 Pence Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy puppet shows, songs and movement activities that support early literacy.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Hill Library
6840 Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Mint Hill, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Children ages 6 and younger can jump at a discounted rate, and for an additional $2, parents can jump too. All jumpers need to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for $2.

Cost: $6.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Spend time with your child learning about God and having fun.

Cost: Free

Where:
The Grounds Bookstore and Cafe
8335 Browne Road
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: The Grounds Bookstore and Cafe
Website »

More information

Preschoolers can bounce with their parents in a safe, climate-controlled facility. 

Cost: $8

Where:
BounceU (Matthews and Charlotte locations)
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come join story time with other families. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble: Morrison Place
4020 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore the Mint Museum's exhibitions.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph, 2730 Randolph Road
Mint Museum Uptown, 500 S. Tryon St.
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

Explore nature in and around the recreation center Register online.

Cost: Free

Where:
West Charlotte Recreation Center
2401 Kendall Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Instructors will provide assistance to students in grades K-12 in reading and math. The instructions will be primarily facilitated by NC Educator licensed teachers.  

Cost: Free

Where:
Revolution Park Sports Academy
1225 Remount Road
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Revolution Park Sports Academy

More information

Charlotte Ballet's Cultural Dance Program presents African Dance classes. Classes are drop-in format, open to all ages and free of charge for participants. There is also child supervision...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Recreation Center
943 West Sugar Creek Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


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 invaders....

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

Featuring more than 50 international artists and more than 100 works of art, Under Construction explores the growth of the collage technique and aesthetic in the work of Romare Bearden and his...

Cost: $15-$6; Free for children 4 and younger; Included in admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

See the Cabarrus Arts Council's newest exhibition, "On Paper." The exhibition will feature a wide array of artwork including cut and sculpted paper, collage and works on paper by...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Galleries
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Create, experiment and practice teamwork teamwork in age appropriate challenges. May the force be with you! Explore the vastness of space in this session.

Cost: $15

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Use multiple critical thinking skills and the library's online resources in a small group setting to solve puzzles and codes in an interactive escape room game.

Cost: Free

Where:
Independence Regional Library
6000 Conference Drive
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore space with activities, games and an out-of-this world snack! Register online.

Cost: Free

Where:
Fort Mill Public Library
1818 2nd Baxter Crossing
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Little ones bounce under the supervision of their parents and without interference from bigger kids. Jumpers need Sky Socks, which are available for purchase, and a signed waiver.

Cost: $8

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


Website »

More information

Children ages 6 and younger can jump at a discounted rate, and for an additional $2, parents can jump too. All jumpers need to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for $2.

Cost: $6.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Sing to songs, move to the music and enjoy an active practice with caregiver and child. Parent or guardian must be present in class.

Cost: $15

Where:
Blossom Tree Wellness
15905 Brookway Drive
Suite 4106
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Tiny Blooms Yoga
Website »

More information

Preschoolers can bounce with their parents in a safe, climate-controlled facility. 

Cost: $8

Where:
BounceU (Matthews and Charlotte locations)
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Little ones and adults discover nature together through crafts, games, songs, animal encounters and outdoor exploration. March 16-17, Inching Along; May 23-24: Life of a Ladybug. Registration...

Cost: $4

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Make a variety of crafts each week to take home. Parent participation and registration are required.

Cost: $4

Where:
Berewick Recreation Center
5910 Dixie River Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

This class incorporates songs and movement and ends with a calming story.

Cost: $15

Where:
Tiny Blooms Yoga
15905 Brookway Drive
Suite 4106
Huntersville, NC  28078
View map »


Sponsor: Tiny Blooms Yoga
Website »

More information

Rock out to live entertainment, access to racing’s brightest stars, giveaways and interactive displays. Each day starting at noon, vendor displays, kids’ activities,...

Cost: Free for festival; tickets to Romare Bearden Park's concerts start at $15

Where:
Uptown Charlotte
Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come out every Thursday for live music in Uptown.

Cost: Free

Where:
Epicentre
210 East Trade St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Learn how to supervise children, recognize safety hazards, handle first-aid situations, play age-appropriate games, change diapers, carry out parents' instructions and discuss job...

Cost: $65-$95

Where:
Morrison Family YMCA
9405 Bryant Farms Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-716-4600
Website »

More information

River Jam brings live musical performances to the world’s largest man-made whitewater river. See website for information about River Jam Run, open water swim, big water sessions, yoga and...

Cost: Free, $6 for parkig

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


Website »

More information

Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


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 invaders....

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

Featuring more than 50 international artists and more than 100 works of art, Under Construction explores the growth of the collage technique and aesthetic in the work of Romare Bearden and his...

Cost: $15-$6; Free for children 4 and younger; Included in admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

See the Cabarrus Arts Council's newest exhibition, "On Paper." The exhibition will feature a wide array of artwork including cut and sculpted paper, collage and works on paper by...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Galleries
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Guests will be mesmerized this summer by dozens of vibrant sculptures by Seattle-based artist Jason Gamrath including towering 10-foot orchids, vivid pitcher plants, energetic Venus flytraps and...

Cost: $8-$15, children younger than 2 free, includes garden admission

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


Telephone: 704-825-4490
Website »

More information

The Hot Wheels is taking the Legends Tour experience Concord Walmart store parking lot. There will be a gaming console, Hot Wheels track play station and a vending machine giving fans a chance to...

Cost: Free

Where:
Walmart
150 Concord Commons Pl. SW
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Hike unexplored areas for fun and adventure, and learn through activities.

Cost: Free

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

This clinic teaches the basics of orienteering, including how to read map features and compasses, recognizing symbols and how to effectively use both for navigation. Stick around for live music...

Cost: Free, $6 for parking

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


Website »

More information

Hear this duo blend country and blues in Spirit Square.

Cost: Free

Where:
Spirit Square
345 N. College St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come watch movies in Village Park!     May 24: "Incredibles II"     June 7: "Sandlot"     June 21: "Jumanji"...

Cost: Free

Where:
Village Park
700 West C St.
Kannapolis, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Children ages 6 and younger can jump at a discounted rate, and for an additional $2, parents can jump too. All jumpers need to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for $2.

Cost: $6.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Preschoolers can bounce with their parents in a safe, climate-controlled facility. 

Cost: $8

Where:
BounceU (Matthews and Charlotte locations)
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Little ones and adults discover nature together through crafts, games, songs, animal encounters and outdoor exploration. March 16-17, Inching Along; May 23-24: Life of a Ladybug. Registration...

Cost: $4

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Participate in educational and therapeutic activities for children with special needs with Little Achievers, a sub group of the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte.

Cost: Free

Where:
South County Regional Library
5801 Rea Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kids will learn some basic yoga positions that go along with the story.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes and Noble - Birkdale Village
8725 Townley Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Rock out to live entertainment, access to racing’s brightest stars, giveaways and interactive displays. Each day starting at noon, vendor displays, kids’ activities,...

Cost: Free for festival; tickets to Romare Bearden Park's concerts start at $15

Where:
Uptown Charlotte
Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Make a unique project out of clay that will last a lifetime. Projects will be taken back to Clayworks to be fired and glazed before being returned to Grier Heights Community Center for pickup.

Cost: Free

Where:
Greer Heights Community Center
3100 Leroy St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-498-1487
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 at Camp North End
1824 Statesville Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Matthews presents food trucks, kids' activities, craft beer and wine, and weekly bands.

Cost: Free

Where:
Stumptown Park
120 S. Trade St.
Matthews, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy live music, food trucks and a beverage garden. May 10 and 24, and June 7 and 21.

Cost: Free

Where:
Downtown Belmont
S. Main St.
Belmont, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Bring your blanket and chairs and enjoy a movie in the park. Food available for purchase. Movie begins at dusk. March 29 and Aug. 23 at Crooked Creek Park, 5900 Oakwood Ln.,...

Cost: Free

Where:
, NC


Website »

More information

Come listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer, except June 21, which is Movie on the Green.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Celebrate 20 years of music at Stonecrest with weekly family fun.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

River Jam brings live musical performances to the world’s largest man-made whitewater river. See website for information about River Jam Run, open water swim, big water sessions, yoga and...

Cost: Free, $6 for parkig

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


Website »

More information

Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


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 invaders....

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6908
Website »

More information

Featuring more than 50 international artists and more than 100 works of art, Under Construction explores the growth of the collage technique and aesthetic in the work of Romare Bearden and his...

Cost: $15-$6; Free for children 4 and younger; Included in admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

The Mint Hill Madness festival offers something for everyone, food, music, a family carnival, an arts and crafts fair, parade, and a spectacular firework show. Fireworks begin at approximately 10...

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Hill Veterans Memorial Park
8850 Fairview Road
Mint Hill, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Town of Mint Hill
Website »

More information

Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

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


Website »

More information

Richard Childress Racing and the NASCAR Hall of Fame will launch an exhibit to honor the 50th anniversary of Richard Childress Racing using artifacts, race cars, images and audio/video displays.

Cost: $12-$25, children 2 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
NASCAR Hall of Fame
400 East Martin Luther King Blvd
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

See the Cabarrus Arts Council's newest exhibition, "On Paper." The exhibition will feature a wide array of artwork including cut and sculpted paper, collage and works on paper by...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Galleries
65 Union St. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The story of this great Apache leader comes to life and is a triumphant story of hope and healing that transcends time.

Cost: $10-$37

Where:
NarroWay Theatre
3327 Hwy 51
Fort Mill, SC  29715
View map »


Sponsor: NarroWay Productions
Telephone: 803-802-2300
Website »

More information

Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Guests will be mesmerized this summer by dozens of vibrant sculptures by Seattle-based artist Jason Gamrath including towering 10-foot orchids, vivid pitcher plants, energetic Venus flytraps and...

Cost: $8-$15, children younger than 2 free, includes garden admission

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


Telephone: 704-825-4490
Website »

More information

Cover the different types of fish and the different methods used to catch them.

Cost: $10-$15

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


Website »

More information

Come for a stroll around Discovery Place Nature’s Paw Paw Nature Trail.

Cost: $8, free for children younger than 2, included with museum admission

Where:
Discovery Place Nature
1658 Sterling Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Listen to a story, and meet Wonder Woman and Spider Man.

Cost: $9

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


Website »

More information

This ongoing nature program is designed to inspire children and adults to explore the natural world of the Carolina Piedmont. This Saturday is "Natural History Jeopardy."

Cost: $5-$8, free for children younger than 3, Included with admission

Where:
The Museum of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Don’t miss NASCAR’s rising stars competing in the May 25 Alsco 300, a daytime donnybrook for sun-drenched supremacy.

Cost: $26.75+

Where:
Charlotte Motor Speedway
5555 Concord Pkwy. S.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discover the world of science through books, hands-on educational activities and experiments.

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discuss teen fandom of pop culture while enjoying snacks and fun geek activities.

Cost: Free

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


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One of the country’s largest gospel music festivals is returning to Carowinds, featuring Mary Mary, Marvin Sapp, Travis Greene, Jonathan McReynolds and more.

Cost: $38-$69

Where:
Carowinds Paladium
14523 Carowinds Blvd.
, NC
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Come see "Christopher Robin." The concession stand will be selling popcorn and other snacks. The film will begin shortly after sunset.

Cost: Free

Where:
Ebenezer Park
4490 Boatshore Road
Rock Hill, SC
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Come play with your kids at My Gym! Parent participation is required. Parents wear socks; children go barefoot.

Cost: $10 per child

Where:
My Gym Southpark
5110 Park Road
2D
, NC
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Little ones bounce under the supervision of their parents and without interference from bigger kids. Jumpers need Sky Socks, which are available for purchase, and a signed waiver.

Cost: $8

Where:
Sky Zone (Pineville and Charlotte locations)
10200 Centrum Pkwy.
Pineville, NC
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Come for 90 minutes of hands-on Lego Robotics with a certified K-8 public educator! Each week, scholars will build a robot with new features. No prior experience required.

Cost: $35

Where:
Ballantyne Hotel
10000 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy.
, NC
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Sponsor: Digi-Bridge
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Paddle the edges of McDowell Nature Preserve with certified instructors while enjoying nature. Children ages five to nine are required to be in a tandem with an adult. Registration is required.

Cost: $20 single, $25 tandem

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
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Join this family-friendly open art session where your little Picasso can shine! Each week will be different activities including easel painting, sensory stations and themed art projects.

Cost: $10

Where:
Noah's Art of Southpark
5110 Park Road
2C
, NC
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Sponsor: Noah's Art of Southpark
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Guided trail rides are open to riders of all experience levels.

Cost: $45-$50

Where:
Anne Springs Close Greenway
1058 Horse Road
Fort Mill, SC
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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:
The Quarry at Carrigan Farms
1213 Oak Ridge Farm Hwy.
Mooresville, NC
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Sponsor: Carrigan Farms
Telephone: 704-664-1450
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Meet a resident bird and an expert keeper in these half-hour sessions along the Raptor Trail. Saturdays 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., and Sundays 1 and 3 p.m.

Cost: $8-$12, children 3 and younger free

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
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Participants learn critical reading and writing skills, advocacy, volunteerism, art, videography, public speaking and more.

Cost: Free

Where:
President James K Polk State Historic Site
12031 Lancaster Hwy.
Pineville, NC
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On Saturdays and Sundays from noon-5pm, the arcade bar opens to all ages with a parent or guardian present.

Cost: Cost for games

Where:
Abari Game Bar
1721 N. Davidson St.
, NC
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Telephone: 980-430-4587
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Rock out to live entertainment, access to racing’s brightest stars, giveaways and interactive displays. Each day starting at noon, vendor displays, kids’ activities,...

Cost: Free for festival; tickets to Romare Bearden Park's concerts start at $15

Where:
Uptown Charlotte
Tryon St.
, NC
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Learn about vultures found at Carolina Raptor Center.

Cost: $8-$12, children 3 and younger free, included with admission to Raptor Trail

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
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Glide along the water while enjoying nature. Registration is required.

Cost: $15 single, $20 tandem

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 York Road
, NC
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Instructors will provide assistance to students in grades K-12 in reading and math. The instructions will be primarily facilitated by NC Educator licensed teachers.  

Cost: Free

Where:
Revolution Park Sports Academy
1225 Remount Road
, NC
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Sponsor: Revolution Park Sports Academy

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Teens ages 16 and younger receive three hours of discounted jumping. Jumpers are required to purchase Altitude Trampoline Socks for an additional $2.

Cost: $19.95

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Come listen to music every Friday and Saturday throughout the summer, except June 21, which is Movie on the Green.

Cost: Free

Where:
The Green at Promenade on Providence
corner of Providence Road and Interstate 485
, NC
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Celebrate 20 years of music at Stonecrest with weekly family fun.

Cost: Free

Where:
Stonecrest Shopping Center
7900 Rea Road
, NC
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River Jam brings live musical performances to the world’s largest man-made whitewater river. See website for information about River Jam Run, open water swim, big water sessions, yoga and...

Cost: Free, $6 for parkig

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
, NC
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Watch a free, outdoor movie in Uptown. May 25: "Back to the Future" June 22: "The Goonies" July 27: "Jurassic Park" Aug. 27: "Jumanji"

Cost: Free

Where:
Uptown Charlotte
406 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Dive into these crustacean's habitats, learn crazy crabby facts, and face off with Crabzilla, the Japanese Spider Crab whose legs can span up to 15 feet.

Cost: $11-$20, includes museum admission, children younger than 2 free

Where:
SEA LIFE Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
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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 invaders....

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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Featuring more than 50 international artists and more than 100 works of art, Under Construction explores the growth of the collage technique and aesthetic in the work of Romare Bearden and his...

Cost: $15-$6; Free for children 4 and younger; Included in admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 South Tryon St.
, NC
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"Welcome to Brookhill" is a collection of images that, like poetry, stir emotion. The photographs reveal what this neighborhood, like every other neighborhood, has come to be to its...

Cost: $7-$9, Children 5 and younger free

Where:
The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
551 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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tapestries and rugs designed by artists usually associated with painting, sculpture, and architecture. Examples of the more familiar media will be installed alongside the textiles. The Bechtler...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
, NC
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The Mint Hill Madness festival offers something for everyone, food, music, a family carnival, an arts and crafts fair, parade, and a spectacular firework show. Fireworks begin at approximately 10...

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Hill Veterans Memorial Park
8850 Fairview Road
Mint Hill, NC
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Sponsor: Town of Mint Hill
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Exhibit explores the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, including why strikers chose to organize with the National Textile Workers Union (NTWU) and how the strike influenced mills across the country. The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gaston County Museum of Art and History
131 West Main St.
Dallas, NC
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Explore another part of the world through the IMAX original film, "Pandas," a breathtaking documentary adventure high in the mountains of Sichuan, China.

Cost: $5-$10

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N Tryon St.
, NC
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This modest exhibition presents twenty works created over four decades by seventeen artists from six different nations. Yet all of them, regardless of their style, form, material or subject proved...

Cost: $5-$9, Children younger than 10 free

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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Richard Childress Racing and the NASCAR Hall of Fame will launch an exhibit to honor the 50th anniversary of Richard Childress Racing using artifacts, race cars, images and audio/video displays.

Cost: $12-$25, children 2 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
NASCAR Hall of Fame
400 East Martin Luther King Blvd
, NC
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The story of this great Apache leader comes to life and is a triumphant story of hope and healing that transcends time.

Cost: $10-$37

Where:
NarroWay Theatre
3327 Hwy 51
Fort Mill, SC  29715
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Sponsor: NarroWay Productions
Telephone: 803-802-2300
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Kids can get creative in Block Party, the new interactive building exhibit for children.

Cost: $6-$7, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
The Schiele Museum
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
Gastonia, 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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