Spring Allergies: Tips To Survive The Season

Dr. Maeve O’Connor from Allergy Asthma & Immunology Relief of Charlotte answers your questions about Spring allergies.


Published:

Spring means flower buds and blooming trees — and if you're one of the millions of people who have seasonal allergies, it also means sneezing, congestion, a runny nose and other bothersome symptoms.

On March 22, Charlotte Parent hosted a live Facebook chat with Dr. Maeve O’Connor of Allergy Asthma & Immunology Relief of Charlotte about tips on getting through the spring allergy season. Following are questions from Facebook users and live answers from Dr. O'Connor. (This transcript has been edited for clarity and grammar.)


Charlotte Parent: Welcome to our “Sidelining Spring Allergies” LIVE Facebook chat with Allergy Asthma and Immunology Relief of Charlotte. Today we'll be talking with Dr. Maeve O’Connor about tips on getting through the spring allergy season. Welcome, Dr. O'Connor. Onto our first question.

What advice do you have for parents going into this spring season? What should they have their kids avoid?

Dr. Maeve O'Connor: Spring is when tree pollen and molds are most abundant. I suggest visiting your pediatrician or allergist in February to determine best treatment options before the season begins, even before March 20, the fist official day of Spring. Even though it is tempting to open home and car windows after the cold winter, this invites allergens in leading to itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing or wheezing. As pollen counts tend to be highest in the early morning hours, try to plan outdoor activities after mid-morning to minimize exposure. Remove pollen-laden clothes quickly and shower to rinse pollen from hair.


Is it possible to build up a slight immunity to spring allergies by taking an over-the-counter antihistamine consistently before allergy season starts?

Dr. O'Connor: Starting antihistamines early does not “build up immunity” like allergy shots per se. By taking medicine early, allergic inflammation is prevented from starting as these medications block the histamine receptors and the histamine binding to cells. If there is little inflammation, your child will experience diminished or no symptoms at all.

Dr. O'Connor: If treatment is started after allergy symptoms occur, the inflammatory process has already been triggered and can lead to complications such as sinus infections or an asthma flare. Parents should also be sure that kids take their medication regularly to prevent symptoms. If anti-histamines are taken two hours before going outdoors, symptoms are typically controlled. We want kids outside after all.


Cold or allergies? How do I know which it truly is, so I can take the right over-the-counter medicine to feel better?

Dr. O'Connor: Unlike allergies, a virus causes the common cold, while allergy symptoms are due to an immune response to allergens such as pollen and mold. Cold and seasonal allergy symptoms often overlap including runny nose, stuffy nose, sneezing, fatigue, and coughing. The best way to know what your child is suffering from is the duration of symptoms. A common cold lasts no longer than 10 days and tends to occur between winter and fall, while allergies can bother children for weeks and can occur seasonally or year-round. While cold and allergy symptoms may overlap, they should be treated accordingly based on proper diagnosis.

Dr. O'Connor: First-generation antihistamines, such as over-the-counter diphenhydramine, may make your child feel sleepy and typically offer relief for only a few hours. Side effects can include dry mouth/eyes along with abdominal pain and headaches. Second-generation antihistamines are less likely to cause these side effects. Each of the over-the-counter medications mentioned above are unique but none is “better than the other”— individual children respond differently. I suggest trying the one recommended by your allergist and continue the one that works best for your child. As an important point, nasal sprays are considered to be the most effective way to treat environmental allergies.


My son was prescribed FloNase by his pediatrician which we filled at the pharmacy, but I later saw FloNase on shelves in the store. So what is the difference if any?

Dr. O'Connor: There is no difference between the prescribed Flonase or the OTC one. They are the same nasal steroid molecule. The cost may be cheaper with a prescription, but this depends on your insurance plan.


Can kids who have never had seasonal allergies in years past can develop them?

Dr. O'Connor: Even a child who has never had seasonal allergies in can develop them. Seasonal allergies can start at almost any time, though they usually develop by 10 years of age and peak in the early 20s. Often, children will outgrow their allergies in adulthood, but it is important to note that allergies can appear at any age including in adults and seniors.


My daughter has taken a prescription allergy medicine for a couple of years, and I've noticed it's less effective now than it once was. Is it possible to develop a tolerance to an allergy medicine or is this a myth?

Dr. O'Connor: Although there were early studies citing that tolerance to therapeutic effects of antihistamines could occur, more recent data, especially studies involving antihistamines reveal that tolerance to these drugs does not occur. Variations in symptoms while on a single antihistamine more than likely are due to differences in the natural course of the condition rather than tolerance to the drug in question. Be sure to increase the dose as well as your child grows and weight changes with each season!


When it comes to infants, how do you determine if they may have allergies?

Dr. O'Connor: It is more difficult to determine if an infant is suffering from allergies, as we don't want to subject them to too many invasive tests. I use the history and physical exam first as well as my experience with allergies in this age group. Avoidance of common allergies such as pets and pollen may shed light if symptoms improve with avoidance. I also check response to a short course of medication. Allergy testing can be done but I prefer to do limited skin testing in these young ones and direct testing to what the infant actually has exposure to.


I really suffer from spring allergies and almost prefer to stay indoors until it passes. This isn’t too realistic because I have a toddler who loves being outside. What’s the best way for me to cope?

Dr. O'Connor: Be sure you know your triggers. See a board-certified allergist to properly diagnose your allergies. Obviously with pollen visible to the naked eye here in Charlotte, (that “yellow stuff” that seems to be everywhere) this can be difficult. Pre-medicate with an over-the-counter antihistamine or nasal spray, use nasal saline to rinse out the nasal passages two or three times a day when allergy symptoms are most bothersome. Wash hands, hair, change clothes from those exposed to pollen quickly, and if necessary, wear a mask. If symptoms persist, consider desensitization immunotherapy (allergy shots or allergy drops/tablets) to allow you to be exposed to pollen without symptoms and minimizing medication exposure.


My 7-year-old is not sneezing but usually develops a cough at allergy time, no wheezing and lungs are clear. Should I start her on allergy meds now or wait for the cough to start? I have suffered with allergies but found that eliminating dairy and wheat during allergy time really helps too.

Dr. O'Connor: If your child coughs routinely every spring season, this could be post nasal drip, itching in the throat or a first sign of asthma. I would suggest starting allergy meds and if the cough does not respond, see your pediatrician or allergist to be sure it is allergies and not the first sign of asthma or an infection. If the cough has responded in the past to allergy meds, you may be able to control this on your own.


Are allergy shots painful?

Dr. O'Connor: Allergy shots can cause mild discomfort but they are not very painful. In fact, children often get used to them quickly. The needle used is very small. After a few shots, most kids become "champs" especially as their allergy and asthma symptoms improve!


How do allergy shots work and how often must they be administered?

Dr. O'Connor: Allergy injections work by causing changes in your immunologic system. These changes occur gradually over a period of many months. Injections begin weekly and then progress to bi-weekly and, finally, monthly injection intervals. Injections begin with extremely dilute doses and then progress in a stepwise fashion until a concentrated therapeutic dose is achieved. Low-doses are initially necessary since very strong doses could provoke an allergic reaction to the treatment itself. Improvement in fewer than six months should not be expected. The FDA has approved three sublingual (under the tongue) tablets to be used daily for immunotherapy as well. These are a good option for grass- and weed-allergic children. Although not FDA approved yet, sublingual daily allergy drops are another safe and effective way to desensitize children to most allergens. These are currently under review by the FDA and are offered by cutting-edge board certified allergists and some ENTS as well.


Is there any truth to probiotics being helpful to people with seasonal allergies?

Dr. O'Connor: Researchers from Vanderbilt University Medical Center examined 23 studies involving a total of 1,919 people with allergies The researchers say 17 of the studies showed that people with seasonal allergies seasonal allergies who took probiotics had some improvement in at least one aspect — such as milder symptoms or better quality of life — compared to people who had allergies but were given a “fake” probiotics. Researchers can’t yet recommend probiotics to treat seasonal allergies because the studies used different probiotic strains and different study groups. More research is needed. There are many studies currently examining gut health, the microbiome and the increase in allergies. PREbiotics and PRObiotics show promise but need stronger data for a firm recommendation from the FDA. I often suggest them with success for allergy patients suffering from gut issues, food sensitivities or chronic GI complaints.


Any suggestions to combat itchy, watery, sometimes swollen eyes, due to pollen?

Dr. O'Connor: Relief Itchy water eyes can be particularly troublesome especially for children. A natural remedy is washing the face (and hands since pollen can be trapped between fingers and under nails and kids love to scratch their eyes!) and rinsing the eyes. There are also many eye drops that contain antihistamines and are safe for children. Kids typically don't like getting eye drops but my trick is to do this after the fall asleep — not as hard as it sounds — and also putting them in Mommy's eyes first to show them that they aren’t so bad. After a few times, kids usually adapt especially when the symptoms go away — they often ask for the “magic drops!”


What's the best remedy for itchy eyes for contact wearers?

Dr. O'Connor: Put eye drops in 30 minutes prior to putting contact lenses in or put the eye drops in at night before bed when your contacts are not in.


What are some natural remedies for pollen allergies, that don't involve taking any kind of medicine?

Dr. O'Connor: Natural remedies include avoidance of known triggers- sometimes easy but not always. Also slain irrigation of the nasal passages to clear away secretions as well as allergens in the nose that can become lodges. I also recommend natural supplements with antihistamines properties such as quercetin and stinging nettles. Lowering stress can be very helpful as can maintaining a healthy organic diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Air filters can also help minimize allergens in the air.


On the same topic, we wondered about acupuncture as a holistic approach.

Dr. O'Connor: The best evidence comes from a single study published in 2013. Three groups of pollen allergic patients were divided into three groups: one received 12 acupunctures, plus antihistamines, one group received sham acupuncture (meaning that the needles were placed randomly rather than at appropriate acupuncture points) plus antihistamines, and the other were allowed only antihistamines. Seventy-one percent of the patients who received real acupuncture reported improvement in their symptom. Fifty-six percent of the patients in the "sham" acupuncture group also reported improvement — possibly a strong placebo effect is at work. It is my opinion that acupuncture is an excellent and safe treatment option for seasonal allergies but more research is needed.


My friend swears by her Neti Pot this time of year. Does that really help "wash" the pollen out of your nose?

Charlotte Parent Magazine: Oooh, yes. Can't forget about the spring tradition of breaking out the Neti Pot!

Dr. O'Connor: Keep some nasal saline around to rinse out your child’s nasal passages two or three times a day when allergy symptoms are more active. Many people have discovered that sinus drainage and congestion is greatly reduced by once or twice daily nasal rinses with saline. Use distilled or sterile water. Wash and dry your hands before using a nasal-rinsing device, and check that it is clean and completely dry. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for use. Wash the device with distilled or sterile water then let it air dry. Nasal-rinsing devices can be used on children as young as age 2, however they might not tolerate the procedure well. Practice makes perfect!


How do you know when it’s time to move from over-the-counter antihistamines and get a prescription?

Dr. O'Connor: For most children, avoiding the allergen and using over-the-counter medications can control symptoms. I tell parents to try one or two over-the-counter meds such as an antihistamine or nasal spray for a week or two. If still suffering, it is wise to see your allergist to assess your child’s symptoms There are other types of medications such as antihistamine nasal sprays and leukotriene modifiers that can be prescribed to help bring your child relief. Allergy shots, may be recommended for children who don’t respond well to treatment with medications, experience side effects from medications, have allergen exposure that is unavoidable or desire a more permanent solution to their allergy problem.


Is honey helpful for combating allergies? If so, does it matter if it's local honey or will generic honey from the grocery store work just as well?

Dr. O'Connor: There is a widespread belief that eating local, unprocessed or "raw" honey can help allergy symptoms by regularly exposing you to pollen - not unlike the concept of how allergy shots work. Allergy injections help desensitize pollen-allergic people by exposing them to a specific pollen at regular intervals. An important difference here is that the pollen amounts in allergy injections are known. The amount of allergenic pollen in the honey is typically very small. There is no scientific proof that eating local honey will improve seasonal allergies and in extremely sensitive individuals, the ingestion of unprocessed honey can result in an immediate allergic reaction involving the mouth, throat, or skin or even anaphylaxis.


If we have pets that spend time outside, can they carry allergens into the house? Would it help at all to wipe them off when they come inside?

Dr. O'Connor: If your furry family members enjoy being outdoors, be sure to brush them off, wipe them off or even rinse them off to prevent pollen from being tracked in by them. This will minimize pollen from entering your home and keep kids from having an increase in allergy symptoms from outdoor allergens while indoors. Pet stores even carry a special glove to use to wipe down pets to minimize pollen and even dander.


What could happen if allergies go untreated? Is there a real danger there?

Dr. O'Connor: Seasonal allergies are rarely serious or life threatening, but studies have shown that untreated allergies can make kids miserable. Yes, miserable. I can assure you I do not want my 4-1/2-year-old to ever feel miserable. So, for quality of life, yes you should treat your child’s sinuses and allergies. What can occur? Chronic sleep troubles and fatigue. Sinus congestion, sneezing and nasal itching and twitching can disrupt sleep which can turn into chronic insomnia over time. Poor focus: It's hard to concentrate on school work when you're constantly blowing your nose and feeling unwell. Ongoing symptoms and a lack of sleep may also trigger irritability and mood disorders, such as anxiety and depression. Uncontrolled allergy symptoms could open the door to more serious inflammatory problems down the road, such as eczema, sinusitis or even asthma.


What’s the best way to treat my 2-year-old? So many over the counter medicines are not age-appropriate for him and he hates the saline nasal spray.

Dr. O'Connor: This is such a common problem. The best and easiest thing to do is avoid known allergy triggers. We know, however, that it is nearly impossible to avoid pollen. Speak to your pediatrician and/or allergist about weight-appropriate dosing of oral antihistamines — they are safe if dose is correct. I do not suggest topical or oral decongestants in this age group. Many of my patients’ parents have learned the art of using nasal spray while toddler is napping or distracted with another activity.

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16445 Poplar Tent Road
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Abari Game Bar
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6000 Sample Road
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UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
9090 Craver Road
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6000 Sample Road
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NASCAR Hall of Fame
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Cost: $12-$17

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Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
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Gaston School of the Arts
825 Union Road
Gastonia, NC
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Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

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The Park Expo and Conference Center
800 Briar Creek Road
, NC
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Ceramic teaching artists will walk you through a clay project from start to finish. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Independence Regional Library
6000 Conference Drive
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Register online for a hands on pottery making workshop with Clayworks.

Cost: Free

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Independence Regional Library
6000 Conference Drive
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This dazzling musical wonderland features singing and dancing to Disney Junior songs, plus holiday classics with their favorite Disney friends, including a visit from Santa Claus!

Cost: $25

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Belk Theater
130 N. Tryon St.
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Telephone: 704-372-1000
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Come discuss "The Parker Inheritance" by Varian Johnson. Snacks will be served.

Cost: Free

Where:
Cornelius Library
21105 Catawba Ave.
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Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


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Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
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Cost: $11 for one hour

Where:
DefyGravity Trampoline Park
8116 University City Blvd.
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Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
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Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
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Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
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Cost: Free

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The Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
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Young children 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: $7

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Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Cost: $15

Where:
Tiny Blooms Yoga
15905 Brookway Drive
Suite 4106
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Drop in for safe play on the equipment indoors.

Cost: $6, $8 on school holidays

Where:
Superior Play Systems
11415 Granite St.
Suite C
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Cost: Free

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Concord Mills
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
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Cost: $2 per child, $5 parking fee

Where:
Anne Springs Close Greenway
2573 Lake Haigler Drive
Fort Mill, SC
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Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

With parental guidance, toddlers can jump on the trampoline, play in the foam pit and craw through obstacles. Play time is for children just starting to walk through age 5 who are not yet in...

Cost: $3-$5

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-246-8611
Website »

More information

Come play in the open gym. All students younger than 3 must have an adult present at all times. Some Mondays are closed due to holidays, so please call to verify playtime.

Cost: $5, cash only

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


Telephone: 803-548-3441
Website »

More information

Visit a Lancaster County librarian at Jumpin Jax Fun Center of Lancaster for story time. Regular admission is applied for children who want to stay to play following the event.

Cost: Free story time

Where:
Jumpin Jax of Lancaster
2650 Charlotte Hwy.
Lancaster, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Structured basketball play for teenage participants.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come for monthly music classes for young children with Down Syndrome, sponsored by Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte.

Cost: Free

Where:
Piedmont Music Therapy
220 Westinghouse Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte
Website »

More information

Come bring cats and dogs to take pictures with Santa!

Cost: Photos available for purchase

Where:
Carolina Place Mall
11025 Carolina Pl. Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Increase your strength, endurance and agility for sports.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

GiGiFIT Kids makes exercise fun and empowers individuals with Down syndrome to be more independent and confident in their abilities. GiGiFIT is an application based program and requires a...

Cost: Free

Where:
Gigi's Playhouse Charlotte
9109 Kings Parade Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy stories, songs and movement activities in your pajamas!

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Participants of all ages will learn proper Jazz dance technique. No previous dance experience required.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-414-2774
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

Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

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


Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
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

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

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

Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

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Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

Flock to the library for this chance to create a paper plate turkey!

Cost: Free

Where:
Mount Pleasant Library
8556 Cook St.
Mount Pleasant, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Celebrate everything Pokemon, from the video games to trading cards to books and beyond! Enjoy Pokemon-themed snacks and crafts for attendees of all ages.

Cost: Free

Where:
Del Webb Library
7641 Charlotte Hwy.
Indian Land, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come discuss the book of the month. New members welcome! Light refreshments will be served. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-416-5000
Website »

More information

This classic murder mystery is chock-full of mishaps and laughs. Things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous with an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead and...

Cost: $20+

Where:
Knight Theater
430 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Donate blood or platelets at OneBlood’s North Carolina donation centers and mobile drives in November and December, and you will have the opportunity to send a message that will then be...

Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: OneBlood
Website »

More information

Toddlers can enjoy a special jump session every weekday morning. With each child age 6 and younger, an adult may jump for free, not including DefyGravity socks for $3.

Cost: $11 for one hour

Where:
DefyGravity Trampoline Park
8116 University City Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

This weekly story time includes classic tales and new favorites.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Toddlers will participate in a fun, kid friendly workout.

Cost: Free

Where:
Tuckaseegee Recreation Center
4820 Tuckaseegee Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

From the earliest days of Billy Graham’s ministry, he had a special place in his heart for teens and young adults. Come see the new special display, and discover how God used Graham to reach...

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Come paint pottery with your toddler for just $3/hour.

Cost: $3 per hour

Where:
Dish It Out
7828 Rea Road
#C
, NC
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

Young children 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: $7

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


Website »

More information

Enjoy two stories and and two craft activities. After the program, romp and play in the SEED Wildlife Garden and Children's Garden, or stroll the historic Wing Haven Garden and Bird Sanctuary.

Cost: $10 per family, free for members

Where:
Wing Haven Gardens
260 Ridgewood Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop in for safe play on the equipment indoors.

Cost: $6, $8 on school holidays

Where:
Superior Play Systems
11415 Granite St.
Suite C
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Children will play with interactive, age appropriate toys and games while listening to music. Parent participation required.

Cost: $3

Where:
Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Site
500 Billmark Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Schleich, the world’s largest toy figurine company, is bringing a fun and exciting pop-up shop to Concord Mills. Come play with toys and see a life-size dinosaur.

Cost: Free

Where:
Concord Mills
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Schleich USA
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Toddlers identify words through interactive games and letter recognition.

Cost: Free

Where:
Tuckaseegee Recreation Center
4820 Tuckaseegee Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

With parental guidance, toddlers can jump on the trampoline, play in the foam pit and craw through obstacles. Play time is for children just starting to walk through age 5 who are not yet in...

Cost: $3-$5

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-246-8611
Website »

More information

This class combines yoga and play for moms and babies through  poses, songs and calming time.

Cost: $15

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


Sponsor: Tiny Blooms Yoga
Website »

More information

This program is intended for both Spanish language families and those who want to expose children to a second language. This occurs on the third Tuesday of the month.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Teach or play with your child in the heated pool.

Cost: $5 per swimmer, max $15 per family

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


Website »

More information

This workshop is open to all ages. No previous dance experience is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School Recreation Site
500 Bilmark Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

JazzArts Charlotte will present WeBop, an award-winning early-childhood jazz education program. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Albemarle Road Presbyterian Church
6740 Albemarle Road
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: JazzArts Charlotte
Website »

More information

Come discuss an assigned book. New members welcome. Register online.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Play interactive games geared towards social development that involve physical activities.

Cost: Free

Where:
Arbor Glen Outreach Center
1520 Clanton Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Come for assistance with literacy in fun and interactive ways.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal Street
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Latin Dance explores the Caribbean dance styles of Salsa, Bachata and Merengue in a fun and energetic dance environment. The class is open to all ages and no previous dance experience is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Belle Johnston Community Center
1000 Johnston Drive
Pineville, 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

Gently-used designer women's clothing and accessories. Tues., 9am-7pm; Wed., 11am-7pm (restocked with many new items); Thurs., 9am-7pm;  Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm (most items...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Merino's Home Furnishings Warehouse
500 S. Main St.
Mooresville , 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

Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

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


Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
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

Get one free child ticket with the purchase of an adult ticket on Tuesdays. Each additional child ages 3-12 will cost $5.

Cost: $15 for adult

Where:
Sea Life Charlotte-Concord Aquarium
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The title, "Coined in the South," refers not only to The Mint Museum’s origins as the first branch of the United States Mint, but also to the acts of inventing and devising....

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


Website »

More information

Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Skate on an ice trail or free skate on 17,000 square feet of ice. Located in the Upper Pond of the Whitewater Center, the skating environment features three areas and an on-ice Airstream...

Cost: $20-$59

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
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Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

Parents and their little ones to get outside and explore in a slightly structured environment.

Cost: Free

Where:
Tom Sykes Recreation Center
1501 Euclid Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Snap photos, draw pictures and take notes like a scientist to create a living record of the park as it changes throughout the year.

Cost: $4

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Search for wildlife in fields, forests and streams to learn how each species makes its home in the nature preserve.

Cost: $4

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Take a closer look at the plants that make the nature preserve a beautiful and important habitat. 

Cost: $4

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Explore the preserve off trail. Register online, and bring an adventurous spirit.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Experiment and explore new technologies.

Cost: Free

Where:
University City Regional Library
301 East W.T. Harris Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Geek out on everything comics and manga related.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Ceramic teaching artists will walk you through a clay project from start to finish. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Learn about our native nocturnal wildlife via wagon ride.

Cost: $5

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


Website »

More information

See the Jonas Brothers live! “Happiness Begins Tour Presented by American Airlines and Mastercard” is the biggest Jonas Brothers tour ever.

Cost: $40+

Where:
Spectrum Center
333 E. Trade St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 800-745-3000
Website »

More information

This classic murder mystery is chock-full of mishaps and laughs. Things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous with an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead and...

Cost: $20+

Where:
Knight Theater
430 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Donate blood or platelets at OneBlood’s North Carolina donation centers and mobile drives in November and December, and you will have the opportunity to send a message that will then be...

Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: OneBlood
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

Toddlers can enjoy a special jump session every weekday morning. With each child age 6 and younger, an adult may jump for free, not including DefyGravity socks for $3.

Cost: $11 for one hour

Where:
DefyGravity Trampoline Park
8116 University City Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

During this interactive playtime for toddlers, wiggle to music and giggle with friends.

Cost: Free

Where:
David W. Phillips Activity Center
946 Burrage Road
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

From the earliest days of Billy Graham’s ministry, he had a special place in his heart for teens and young adults. Come see the new special display, and discover how God used Graham to reach...

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Young children 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: $7

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 Charlotte
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop in for safe play on the equipment indoors.

Cost: $6, $8 on school holidays

Where:
Superior Play Systems
11415 Granite St.
Suite C
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Schleich, the world’s largest toy figurine company, is bringing a fun and exciting pop-up shop to Concord Mills. Come play with toys and see a life-size dinosaur.

Cost: Free

Where:
Concord Mills
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Schleich USA
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

With parental guidance, toddlers can jump on the trampoline, play in the foam pit and craw through obstacles. Play time is for children just starting to walk through age 5 who are not yet in...

Cost: $3-$5

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-246-8611
Website »

More information

Enjoy stories, movement with music and a seasonal craft..

Cost: $5-$8, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Little ones are invited to jump, roll and play in the Carolina Flipz gym!

Cost: $5

Where:
Carolina Flipz
11812 Carolina Place Pkwy.
Suite B
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Homeschool students receive discounted admission at Jumpin Jax Fun Center of Lancaster.

Cost: $8

Where:
Jumpin Jax of Lancaster
2650 Charlotte Hwy.
Lancaster, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Sing and wiggle around, read fun books and participate in a craft or activity! On the third Wednesday of each month, a special guest from the York County Library visits for Toddler Story Time.

Cost: $5-$8, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Come join story time with other families. 

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Big Bird, Elmo and their friend Hu Hu Zhu, take viewers on a journey of discovery to learn about the Big Dipper, the North Star and the Sun in this family-friendly planetarium show.

Cost: $5-$8, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Come play all arcade games for half the price all day on Wednesday.

Cost: Price per game varies

Where:
Bowlero
210 E. Trade St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Bring your seat , child and vehicle, and plan to spend at least 20 minutes with a technician. No appointment is necessary.

Cost: Free

Where:
Cornelius Fire Station
19729 S. Main St.
Cornelius, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Students will learn the movement of the pieces and basic chess strategy.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal St.
, 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

Increase your strength, endurance and agility for sports.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal St.
, 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

Gently-used designer women's clothing and accessories. Tues., 9am-7pm; Wed., 11am-7pm (restocked with many new items); Thurs., 9am-7pm;  Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm (most items...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Merino's Home Furnishings Warehouse
500 S. Main St.
Mooresville , 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

Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

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


Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
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

Visit the open-air ice skating rink located across from Fountain Park in Rock Hill. See website for operating hours.

Cost: $10, includes skate rental

Where:
Founders Holiday Ice Rink
205 Saluda St.
Rock Hill, SC
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

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

Studio Drift, founded by Dutch artists Ralph Nauta and Lonneke Gordijn, creates breathtaking sculptures that explore the relationship between humanity, nature and technology

Cost: $6-$15, children 4 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

The title, "Coined in the South," refers not only to The Mint Museum’s origins as the first branch of the United States Mint, but also to the acts of inventing and devising....

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


Website »

More information

Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Skate on an ice trail or free skate on 17,000 square feet of ice. Located in the Upper Pond of the Whitewater Center, the skating environment features three areas and an on-ice Airstream...

Cost: $20-$59

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

Selected Vernon Grant images have been reproduced as holiday ornaments to honor the famed illustrator’s work and the ongoing exhibition and conservation of the Vernon Grant collection. This...

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

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


Website »

More information

See a puppet show with songs and activities that support early literacy and foster a love of books.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

This program utilizes books, movement, music and other resources to provide an adaptive experience.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

Where:
Morrison Regional Library
7015 Morrison Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Join this hands-on workshop to learn how to texturize and manipulate clay. Register online.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Ceramic teaching artists will walk you through a clay project from start to finish. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

For generations of Americans, World’s Fairs captured visions of hope for the future as part of their collective memory. Mina Chow journeys to discover why America abandoned World's Fairs.

Cost: $5-$10

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


Website »

More information

Explore songs and stories through interactive activities. Register online.

Cost: Free

Where:
Myers Park Library
1361 Queens Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

As one of the progenitors of the astonishing full-band sound of “contemporary” a cappella, Rockapella has shown every audience the raw power of pure vocal talent and originality.

Cost: $25+

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


Telephone: 704-372-1000
Website »

More information

This classic murder mystery is chock-full of mishaps and laughs. Things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous with an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead and...

Cost: $20+

Where:
Knight Theater
430 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Donate blood or platelets at OneBlood’s North Carolina donation centers and mobile drives in November and December, and you will have the opportunity to send a message that will then be...

Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: OneBlood
Website »

More information

Toddlers can enjoy a special jump session every weekday morning. With each child age 6 and younger, an adult may jump for free, not including DefyGravity socks for $3.

Cost: $11 for one hour

Where:
DefyGravity Trampoline Park
8116 University City Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

From the earliest days of Billy Graham’s ministry, he had a special place in his heart for teens and young adults. Come see the new special display, and discover how God used Graham to reach...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
, NC
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

Young children 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: $7

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 Charlotte
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop in for safe play on the equipment indoors.

Cost: $6, $8 on school holidays

Where:
Superior Play Systems
11415 Granite St.
Suite C
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Schleich, the world’s largest toy figurine company, is bringing a fun and exciting pop-up shop to Concord Mills. Come play with toys and see a life-size dinosaur.

Cost: Free

Where:
Concord Mills
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Schleich USA
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

With parental guidance, toddlers can jump on the trampoline, play in the foam pit and craw through obstacles. Play time is for children just starting to walk through age 5 who are not yet in...

Cost: $3-$5

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-246-8611
Website »

More information

Little ones are invited to jump, roll and play in the Carolina Flipz gym!

Cost: $5

Where:
Carolina Flipz
11812 Carolina Place Pkwy.
Suite B
Pineville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Watch a King Vulture play on a playground in the Vulture Culture exhibit.

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

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Website »

More information

Youth that have begun training in ballet, and have at least 3 years experience, are invited to begin preparation for the iconic pointe shoe work of the Classical Ballerina.

Cost: $10

Where:
Elon Recreation Center
11401 Ardrey Kell Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Learn the history of various songs and how they were created. Get an introduction to the basics of being a DJ.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Swing, stomp and sing with your little ones in this interactive introduction to jazz for preschoolers and caregivers. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Central Steele Creek Presbyterian Church
9401 S. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: JazzArts Charlotte
Website »

More information

Wind down after a busy day with bedtime stories and soothing songs. Come in your jammies, and bring your favorite stuffed animal.

Cost: Free

Where:
Kannapolis Library
850 Mountain St.
Kannapolis, 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

Gently-used designer women's clothing and accessories. Tues., 9am-7pm; Wed., 11am-7pm (restocked with many new items); Thurs., 9am-7pm;  Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm (most items...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Merino's Home Furnishings Warehouse
500 S. Main St.
Mooresville , 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

Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

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


Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
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

Visit the open-air ice skating rink located across from Fountain Park in Rock Hill. See website for operating hours.

Cost: $10, includes skate rental

Where:
Founders Holiday Ice Rink
205 Saluda St.
Rock Hill, SC
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

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

Showtime Theatre Company is proud to present our Middle-High School Youth Performance of "Disney’s Frozen Jr.," which brings Elsa, Anna, and the magical land of Arendelle to life,...

Cost: $10-$15

Where:
McCelvey Center's Lowrey Family Theatre
212 E. Jefferson St.
York, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Studio Drift, founded by Dutch artists Ralph Nauta and Lonneke Gordijn, creates breathtaking sculptures that explore the relationship between humanity, nature and technology

Cost: $6-$15, children 4 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

A Viking king of Britain who has decided to retire passes on the responsibilities of leadership to her daughters, but she cannot see that she has been deceived by them until it’s too late....

Cost: $15

Where:
Duke Energy Theater at Spirit Square
345 North College St.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Free Reign Theatre Company

More information

Families are welcome every day at the Auto Show, but Saturday and Sunday will have special entertainment for kids, including Santa from noon-4pm. Thurs.-Fri., Noon-9pm; Sat., 10am-10pm; Sun.,...

Cost: $10, children ages 12 and younger free

Where:
Charlotte Convention Center
501 S. College St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The title, "Coined in the South," refers not only to The Mint Museum’s origins as the first branch of the United States Mint, but also to the acts of inventing and devising....

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


Website »

More information

Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Based on Ludwig Bemelman's classic, "Madeline's Christmas,"  this musical brings Miss Clavel and "12 little girls in two straight lines" to the Gaston School of the...

Cost: $10

Where:
Gaston School of the Arts
825 Union Road
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Skate on an ice trail or free skate on 17,000 square feet of ice. Located in the Upper Pond of the Whitewater Center, the skating environment features three areas and an on-ice Airstream...

Cost: $20-$59

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

Discover new places in this environmental education series. Topics and locations will change monthly. Meet at the nature center with water and a snack.

Cost: $10

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Register to gobble up turkey facts in a trivia game all about turkeys.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Learn how to keep slithery friends healthy.

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Play basketball in a structured environment.

Cost: Free

Where:
Arbor Glen Outreach Center
1520 Clanton Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Ceramic teaching artists will walk you through a clay project from start to finish. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Simon Tam is an Asian American author, musician, activist, and self-proclaimed troublemaker. The evening will include a talk and Q&A session with Simon Tam, followed by a book signing. He is...

Cost: Free

Where:
Great Aunt Stella Center
926 Elizabeth Ave.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

This classic murder mystery is chock-full of mishaps and laughs. Things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous with an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead and...

Cost: $20+

Where:
Knight Theater
430 South Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Central Piedmont Music presents "Orphée et Euridice," a tragic opera in three acts. Fri. and Sat., 7:30pm; Sun. 2:30pm.

Cost: $10-$22

Where:
Dale F. Halton Theater
1206 Elizabeth Ave.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Central Piedmont Community College
Website »

More information

Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Donate blood or platelets at OneBlood’s North Carolina donation centers and mobile drives in November and December, and you will have the opportunity to send a message that will then be...

Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: OneBlood
Website »

More information

Toddlers can enjoy a special jump session every weekday morning. With each child age 6 and younger, an adult may jump for free, not including DefyGravity socks for $3.

Cost: $11 for one hour

Where:
DefyGravity Trampoline Park
8116 University City Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

From the earliest days of Billy Graham’s ministry, he had a special place in his heart for teens and young adults. Come see the new special display, and discover how God used Graham to reach...

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Young children 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: $7

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 Charlotte
10624 Metromont Pkwy.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop in for safe play on the equipment indoors.

Cost: $6, $8 on school holidays

Where:
Superior Play Systems
11415 Granite St.
Suite C
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Young children can jump with other little ones. Parents and caregivers jump free! W8less socks required.

Cost: $10 per hour

Where:
W8Less LKN
10442-A Bailey Road
Cornelius, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Schleich, the world’s largest toy figurine company, is bringing a fun and exciting pop-up shop to Concord Mills. Come play with toys and see a life-size dinosaur.

Cost: Free

Where:
Concord Mills
8111 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Schleich USA
Website »

More information

Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

With parental guidance, toddlers can jump on the trampoline, play in the foam pit and craw through obstacles. Play time is for children just starting to walk through age 5 who are not yet in...

Cost: $3-$5

Where:
Charlotte Allstar Gymnastics and Cheerleading
11011 Monroe Road
Matthews, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-246-8611
Website »

More information

Visit a Lancaster County librarian at Jumpin Jax Fun Center of Lancaster for movement and yoga through stories. Regular admission is applied for children who want to stay to play following the...

Cost: Free story time

Where:
Jumpin Jax of Lancaster
2650 Charlotte Hwy.
Lancaster, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Teach or play with your child in the heated pool.

Cost: $5 per swimmer, max $15 per family

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


Website »

More information

The Polar Express Train Ride, inspired by the run-away hit movie, features a train ride to the North Pole with dancing chefs, cookies, hot chocolate and a presentation of the first gift of...

Cost: $32-$325

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


Sponsor: North Carolina Transportation Musem
Website »

More information

Enjoy the wonder of the park dazzlingly lit for the holidays. Ride a nighttime train. Advanced tickets are required.

Cost: $38-$44 for adults, ages 2 and younger free

Where:
Tweetsie Railroad
300 Tweetsie Railroad Lane
Blowing Rock, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Tweetsie Railroad
Website »

More information

Drive 3.75 miles with 3.5 million lights. Every Thursday through Sunday, the indoor Christmas Village will include photos with Santa, children’s activities, a display of decorated Christmas...

Cost: $20-$30

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


Website »

More information

No one notices Brian until Justin arrives. This high-spirited musical will help us all discover the possibilities that begin with a simple act of kindness. See website for show times.

Cost: $16+

Where:
Wells Fargo Playhouse
300 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-973-2828
Website »

More information

The "New World" Symphony, fuses the music of  Bohemian roots with a fascinating new world full of new sounds.

Cost: $23

Where:
Belk Theater
130 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-972-2000
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

Gently-used designer women's clothing and accessories. Tues., 9am-7pm; Wed., 11am-7pm (restocked with many new items); Thurs., 9am-7pm;  Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm (most items...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Merino's Home Furnishings Warehouse
500 S. Main St.
Mooresville , 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

See your favorite Christmas scenes, and hear your favorite songs during this holiday dinner theater experience. See website for showtimes.  No meal will be served at Sunday 2pm shows.

Cost: $9.50-$37

Where:
The NarroWay Theatre
3327 Hwy. 51 N.
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Telephone: 803-802-2300
Website »

More information

Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

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


Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
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

Visit the open-air ice skating rink located across from Fountain Park in Rock Hill. See website for operating hours.

Cost: $10, includes skate rental

Where:
Founders Holiday Ice Rink
205 Saluda St.
Rock Hill, SC
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

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

Showtime Theatre Company is proud to present our Middle-High School Youth Performance of "Disney’s Frozen Jr.," which brings Elsa, Anna, and the magical land of Arendelle to life,...

Cost: $10-$15

Where:
McCelvey Center's Lowrey Family Theatre
212 E. Jefferson St.
York, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Studio Drift, founded by Dutch artists Ralph Nauta and Lonneke Gordijn, creates breathtaking sculptures that explore the relationship between humanity, nature and technology

Cost: $6-$15, children 4 and younger free, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

A Viking king of Britain who has decided to retire passes on the responsibilities of leadership to her daughters, but she cannot see that she has been deceived by them until it’s too late....

Cost: $15

Where:
Duke Energy Theater at Spirit Square
345 North College St.
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Free Reign Theatre Company

More information

Families are welcome every day at the Auto Show, but Saturday and Sunday will have special entertainment for kids, including Santa from noon-4pm. Thurs.-Fri., Noon-9pm; Sat., 10am-10pm; Sun.,...

Cost: $10, children ages 12 and younger free

Where:
Charlotte Convention Center
501 S. College St.
, NC
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The title, "Coined in the South," refers not only to The Mint Museum’s origins as the first branch of the United States Mint, but also to the acts of inventing and devising....

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
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Based on Ludwig Bemelman's classic, "Madeline's Christmas,"  this musical brings Miss Clavel and "12 little girls in two straight lines" to the Gaston School of the...

Cost: $10

Where:
Gaston School of the Arts
825 Union Road
Gastonia, NC
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Skate on an ice trail or free skate on 17,000 square feet of ice. Located in the Upper Pond of the Whitewater Center, the skating environment features three areas and an on-ice Airstream...

Cost: $20-$59

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
, NC
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Eat a holly, jolly breakfast and visit with Santa. Enjoy music, games and crafts. This is a Mall Stars Kids Club event, and the first 200 kids and their families enjoy breakfast free! Register...

Cost: Free

Where:
Northlake Mall Food Court
6801 Northlake Mall Drive
, NC
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Come celebrate the state tree of North Carolina, the longleaf pine. Learn how to become involved with longleaf pine restoration efforts.

Cost: $8, included with admission

Where:
Discovery Place Nature
1658 Sterling Road
, NC
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Sponsor: Discovery Place Nature
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Experience charming shops, festive music, crafts, food, holiday decor, local wines, Santa and more than 450 holiday merchants with gifts for all ages.

Cost: $4-$15, children ages 5 and younger free

Where:
The Park Expo and Conference Center
800 Briar Creek Road
, NC
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Ceramic teaching artists will walk you through a clay project from start to finish. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Tuckaseegee Recreation Center
4820 Tuskaseegee Road
, NC
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Come for a free Thanksgiving dinner, youth basketball games and live entertainment.

Cost: Free

Where:
Naomi Drenan Recreation Center
750 Beal Street
, NC
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Meet farm animals, and watch staff feed, clean and care for them.

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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Sponsor: Gaston County Farm Bureau
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This nature program may feature a tour, demonstration or activity designed to inspire exploration nature.

Cost: $5-$8, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
The Museum of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
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Connect with people and nature while removing invasive plant species. Register online.

Cost: Free

Where:
McDowell Nature Preserve
15222 S. York Road
, NC
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Enjoy a free movie at the library.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mountain Island Library
4420 Hoyt Galvin Way
, NC
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Come out for a free photo with Santa and Mrs. Claus! Meet Christmas Mickey and Minnie, and visit with characters from Frozen. Shop for gifts from Rea Farms Shops at Stocking Stuffer Lane, and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Rea Farms
9855 Sandy Rock Pl.
, NC
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Explore family-friendly activities including a trackless train, holiday characters, crafts, dance performances and more until 7 p.m. Ramona from 107.9 The Link will be on-site with Christmas...

Cost: Free

Where:
Blakeney Shopping Centers
9839 Rea Road
, NC
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Celebrate the start of the holiday season with live entertainment, kids activities, Santa, fireworks, and the Winterland Express and Carousel.

Cost: Free

Where:
Village Park
700 West C. St.
Kannapolis, NC
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This classic murder mystery is chock-full of mishaps and laughs. Things are quickly going from bad to utterly disastrous with an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can’t play dead and...

Cost: $20+

Where:
Knight Theater
430 South Tryon St.
, NC
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Central Piedmont Music presents "Orphée et Euridice," a tragic opera in three acts. Fri. and Sat., 7:30pm; Sun. 2:30pm.

Cost: $10-$22

Where:
Dale F. Halton Theater
1206 Elizabeth Ave.
, NC
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Sponsor: Central Piedmont Community College
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Discover Cuban culture through music, games and interactive experiences that will paint a picture of Cuba. This bilingual experience will showcase Cuba's wildlife, biodiversity, history and...

Cost: $18-$22, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

Where:
Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Donate blood or platelets at OneBlood’s North Carolina donation centers and mobile drives in November and December, and you will have the opportunity to send a message that will then be...

Cost: Free

Where:
OneBlood Mobiles and Donor Centers
4447 South Blvd.
, NC
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Sponsor: OneBlood
Website »

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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
7325 Smith Corners Blvd., Charlotte
, NC
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Young children 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: $7

Where:
Altitude Trampoline Park
3490 E. Franklin Blvd.
Gastonia, NC
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Visit Reedy, McDowell or Latta Nature Preserves for a hike between November 17-30 to log your miles and pick up a prize.

Cost: Free

Where:
Latta Nature Center
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC
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Sponsor: Latta Nature Center
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Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. Guests can reserve their free visit and photo with Santa by visiting the Bass Pass...

Cost: Free

Where:
Cabela's
1000 Cabelas Drive
Fort Mill, SC
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From the earliest days of Billy Graham’s ministry, he had a special place in his heart for teens and young adults. Come see the new special display, and discover how God used Graham to reach...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Billy Graham Library
4330 Westmont Drive
, NC
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The Carolina Renaissance Festival is filled with charming cottages, castles, kitchens and pubs, all with simulated architecture of a 16th century European village. Oct. 5-6: Opening Weekend...

Cost: $15-$26

Where:
Carolina Renaissance Festival
16445 Poplar Tent Road
Huntersville, NC
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Sensory Friendly Screenings are designed for a sensitive audience in a safe and accepting environment. July 20 - "Lion King" ​August 17 - "Angry Birds 2" ​September...

Cost: $5

Where:
Stone Theaters, RedStone 14 Cinemas
9650 Red Stone Drive
(Sun Valley 14 in Indian Trail, RedStone 14 in Indian Land)
Indian Land, SC
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Learn about drama from professional thespians and teachers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Hickory Grove Recreation Center
6709 Pence Road
, NC
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Enjoy this enchanting Christmas village offering free 4x6 photos with Santa and family holiday activities. The Santa’s Wonderland Christmas village offers remote control trucks, toy...

Cost: Free

Where:
Bass Pro Shops
8181 Concord Mills Blvd.
Concord, NC
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Big Bird, Elmo and their friend Hu Hu Zhu, take viewers on a journey of discovery to learn about the Big Dipper, the North Star and the Sun in this family-friendly planetarium show.

Cost: $5-$8, children 3 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
The Museum of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC
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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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Vultures and humans will engage in a fun activity of the trainer's choice.  It could be painting, playground fun or taking a walk with a vulture.

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

Where:
Carolina Raptor Center
6000 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
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Explore the expressive, active and creative benefits of dance.

Cost: $10

Where:
Elon Recreation Center
11401 Ardrey Kell Road
, NC
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Our engaging team of raptor keepers will show you some of their favorite bird species. Check in the Visitor’s Center whiteboard to see who you can meet each day.

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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Sponsor: Carolina Raptor Center
Website »

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The Polar Express Train Ride, inspired by the run-away hit movie, features a train ride to the North Pole with dancing chefs, cookies, hot chocolate and a presentation of the first gift of...

Cost: $32-$325

Where:
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Drive
Spencer, NC
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Sponsor: North Carolina Transportation Musem
Website »

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Enjoy the wonder of the park dazzlingly lit for the holidays. Ride a nighttime train. Advanced tickets are required.

Cost: $38-$44 for adults, ages 2 and younger free

Where:
Tweetsie Railroad
300 Tweetsie Railroad Lane
Blowing Rock, NC
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Sponsor: Tweetsie Railroad
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Drive 3.75 miles with 3.5 million lights. Every Thursday through Sunday, the indoor Christmas Village will include photos with Santa, children’s activities, a display of decorated Christmas...

Cost: $20-$30

Where:
Charlotte Motor Speedway
5555 Concord Pkwy. S.
Concord, NC
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The "New World" Symphony, fuses the music of  Bohemian roots with a fascinating new world full of new sounds.

Cost: $23

Where:
Belk Theater
130 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-972-2000
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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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Gently-used designer women's clothing and accessories. Tues., 9am-7pm; Wed., 11am-7pm (restocked with many new items); Thurs., 9am-7pm;  Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm (most items...

Cost: Free admission

Where:
Merino's Home Furnishings Warehouse
500 S. Main St.
Mooresville , 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
Website »

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See your favorite Christmas scenes, and hear your favorite songs during this holiday dinner theater experience. See website for showtimes.  No meal will be served at Sunday 2pm shows.

Cost: $9.50-$37

Where:
The NarroWay Theatre
3327 Hwy. 51 N.
Fort Mill, SC
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Telephone: 803-802-2300
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Uptown Charlotte’s outdoor ice rink returns to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Plaza. Take a picture with the giant polar bear, under the tree or in the decorated Ceremonial Garden.

Cost: $12-$16

Where:
NASCAR Hall of Fame
400 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
, NC
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Sponsor: NASCAR Hall of Fame
Website »

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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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Visit the open-air ice skating rink located across from Fountain Park in Rock Hill. See website for operating hours.

Cost: $10, includes skate rental

Where:
Founders Holiday Ice Rink
205 Saluda St.
Rock Hill, SC
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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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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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No one notices Brian until Justin arrives. This high-spirited musical will help us all discover the possibilities that begin with a simple act of kindness. See website for show times.

Cost: $16+

Where:
Wells Fargo Playhouse
300 E. 7th St.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-973-2828
Website »

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Showtime Theatre Company is proud to present our Middle-High School Youth Performance of "Disney’s Frozen Jr.," which brings Elsa, Anna, and the magical land of Arendelle to life,...

Cost: $10-$15

Where:
McCelvey Center's Lowrey Family Theatre
212 E. Jefferson St.
York, SC
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Studio Drift, founded by Dutch artists Ralph Nauta and Lonneke Gordijn, creates breathtaking sculptures that explore the relationship between humanity, nature and technology

Cost: $6-$15, children 4 and younger free, included with admission

Where:
Mint Museum Uptown
500 S. Tryon St.
, NC
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Website »

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A Viking king of Britain who has decided to retire passes on the responsibilities of leadership to her daughters, but she cannot see that she has been deceived by them until it’s too late....

Cost: $15

Where:
Duke Energy Theater at Spirit Square
345 North College St.
, NC
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Sponsor: Free Reign Theatre Company

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Families are welcome every day at the Auto Show, but Saturday and Sunday will have special entertainment for kids, including Santa from noon-4pm. Thurs.-Fri., Noon-9pm; Sat., 10am-10pm; Sun.,...

Cost: $10, children ages 12 and younger free

Where:
Charlotte Convention Center
501 S. College St.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

The title, "Coined in the South," refers not only to The Mint Museum’s origins as the first branch of the United States Mint, but also to the acts of inventing and devising....

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


Website »

More information

Skate on the 5,000 square-foot ice rink. Guests can also enjoy holiday lights and decor; Santa’s Pub, a coffee shop, live music, surprise guests and festive activities.

Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Symphony Park at Southpark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Based on Ludwig Bemelman's classic, "Madeline's Christmas,"  this musical brings Miss Clavel and "12 little girls in two straight lines" to the Gaston School of the...

Cost: $10

Where:
Gaston School of the Arts
825 Union Road
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

See Santa Claus in his custom-built house on the Village Green. See website for schedule.

Cost: $20 for a 5×7 photo and $30 for a USB Stick with all photos

Where:
Blakeney Shopping Centers
9839 Rea Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Skate on an ice trail or free skate on 17,000 square feet of ice. Located in the Upper Pond of the Whitewater Center, the skating environment features three areas and an on-ice Airstream...

Cost: $20-$59

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


Website »

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Annual Guides

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

Your guide to raising kids in the Queen City, plus our 2019 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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