What Labor and Delivery Nurses Wish You Knew

The real lowdown from the pros.


Published:

Every first-time mom-to-be has similar questions: What do I bring to the hospital? Should I use a doula or midwife? What can I do to prepare for labor? How long will it take?

Advice from mothers, sisters, friends and complete strangers often is plentiful, but the real lowdown from the pros is the most helpful. We asked a labor-and-delivery nurse, a mother-baby nurse and a certified nurse midwife for advice. Here's what you should know before your bundle of joy arrives.
 

Take Classes

Childbirth-preparation classes are best taken at 30-32 weeks, because the weekly meetings give parents the opportunity to ask questions of labor-and-delivery nurses, as well as take questions back to their doctor if necessary.

"They give lots of information to prepare parents and help them make sound decisions," says HoYu Pan, a labor-and-delivery nurse at Duke Birthing Center in Durham. Depending on the location, the classes also may include a tour of the hospital facilities so new parents can see where they'll be admitted and where they'll stay. Some hospitals offer virtual tours so parents can learn about the admission process, making it will be easier for them when they arrive.

"A lot of women don't have a clue as to how (parenthood) might change them, and younger people aren't aware of how a baby is going to totally change their lives," says Deb O'Connell, a certified nurse midwife and owner of Carrboro Midwifery. "A parenting class is worth the money."
 

Make a Packing List

What do you bring with you? Your own pillow(s) might be at the top of your list. According to Dana Morris, a labor-and-delivery nurse at Forsyth Medical Center in Winston-Salem, people love their own pillows. Either the hospital pillows aren't fluffy enough, or there aren't enough of them.

Excited parents-to-be consistently remember the camera and/or video camera, but they rarely remember both. If you want the first-day handprints and footprints put in the baby book, remember to pack the book in your suitcase. Most hospitals have a first-day photograph service, so make sure you bring that first-photo outfit, too.

Finally, many moms think they need to bring diapers and formula with them, but hospitals have these supplies readily available.
 

Expect to See Many Faces

Be prepared to meet a number of medical personnel while you're at the hospital — during birth and after — including doctors, nurses and anesthesiologists. "There are people coming in and out of the room," says Erin Birkmeyer, a mother/baby nurse at Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte. "Parents don't realize how many people are involved in the care of both mom and baby." After the delivery, and depending on the hospital, there may be one nurse for the mother and one for the baby, to make sure both are recovering and healthy. They'll check on you regularly for the first few hours.

Not sure you want to give birth in a hospital? Consider a midwife, either for a home birth or a delivery at a birthing center. "Midwives are the experts in low-risk deliveries," says O'Connell, advising women to educate themselves about their options. "We've been delivering babies for centuries. Most American first-time parents aren't aware of what is out there — hospitals, birth centers, home births — determine which is the most comfortable for you."
 

Ask Questions

Even if you're not planning a natural birth, O'Connell advises parents to interview their health care provider. "Don't be afraid to ask questions. 'How long have you been practicing? What is your rate of C-sections? Do you support natural childbirth? What's your epidural rate, and how experienced are your anesthesiologists at giving them?'"

If you're going to use a midwife, O'Connell suggests you find out if he or she is board certified. Know, too, there is a difference between a certified nurse midwife and a certified professional midwife. Also find out if doulas are allowed at the hospital.
 

Share Your Birth Plan

"If you come in with specific ideas of what you do or don't want during labor — whether it's specific music, a very quiet environment, or if you don't want to be asked if you want pain medicine — we'll read your plan and try to follow it as best as we can," says Morris.

But having a plan doesn't mean you have to stick to it. Every birth is different, and pain levels — and tolerances — vary. It's OK to decide in the middle of labor that you need to make a change to that labor plan. "Just because a mom's decided something initially doesn't mean she can't change her mind," says Morris. "If you can sit still long enough for anesthesia to do their work, you can get an epidural."

However, Pan cautions about getting an epidural too early because it can lead to a longer labor. "People don't realize an early epidural will affect fetus rotation and can extend labor and pushing time. The ideal time would be in the middle of the active stage of labor, around five or six centimeters (dilated). Walking around will help the baby rotate to the proper position and will shorten the second stage of labor."

Once you have an epidural, adds Pan, you're not able to leave the bed, so you can't help the baby rotate, which can lead to complications that could lead to a caesarean section.

Even in the hospital, you can have a midwife or doula with you if you want a natural birth but feel the need for the security of a hospital setting in case something goes wrong.
 

Be Patient — Birth Takes Time

"There are so many TV shows and reality shows about giving birth right now, and it's generally not as fast as it is on TV," says Morris. "(Moms aren't) prepared for the pushing process to take as long as it does. It can take two hours (of pushing) for a first baby."

Pan agrees and goes one step further. "Parents probably don't know that even an induction can be a two-day process. If the cervix isn't ready, mature, it's going to take two days."
 

Get Your Rest

Realize you're going to be tired. "The thing parents don't know at all is that after delivery they'll be up every two hours, even in the hospital, because of breastfeeding," says Pan. "The maximum you'll be able to sleep is three hours at a time."

Birkmeyer encourages Mom and Dad to rest while they can in the hospital. "New parents will have tons of visitors, but when you have so many, you never have time to rest, and (then) you're exhausted and going home. You're going to need a lot of help when you get home. If you have friends and family who can help out or cook a meal, take it."
 

Take Care of Yourself

Guard your health before and after the baby comes. "It usually takes two weeks for a mom to get back to normal, but it takes six weeks for a complete recovery," says Birkmeyer. So after about two weeks, you'll start feeling pretty good again, but your body is still recovering from labor for another month after that.

"A lot of (moms) are not aware of how important the first trimester, even pre-pregnancy, is," said O'Connell. Entering a pregnancy at a healthy weight can make a difference when it comes to hypertension and gestational diabetes. Prenatal vitamins are a must to help keep mom and baby healthy.
 

Welcome Breastfeeding Help

If you're breastfeeding, a lactation specialist will be available to help you while you're in the hospital. Usually you won't meet the lactation specialist until after delivery, but check with your labor-and-delivery nurse, as well. At Forsyth Medical Center, labor-and-delivery nurses are trained to help new moms with the initial feeding.

"The lactation consultant is available for your entire stay, and visits once a day," says Birkmeyer. "Sometimes at first it's kind of difficult. By the time you go home, we'll make sure you're comfortable with it and confident that you're doing it right."

Remember, you've never done this, and neither has your baby. Relax and enjoy this time, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

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Daily Calendar

April 2017

More than 100 activities for science lovers of all ages, including hands-on educational presentations and displays, engineering demonstrations, rockets and drones, and more. 

Cost: Free

Where:
UNC Charlotte Union Plaza
9201 University City Blvd.
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Telephone: 704-687-5743
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Cost: Children and Mint members Free, adult admission $6

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Mint Museum Uptown
500 S. Tryon St.
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Telephone: 704-337-2000
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Top youth chamber ensembles from all over the country compete for more than $12,000 in prizes.

Cost: $7-$9

Where:
Duke Family Performance Hall
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207 Faculty Drive
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Telephone: 704-894-2135
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Downtown Belmont
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Telephone: 704-908-2610
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Freedom Park
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Cost: Free

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Veterans Park
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Cost: Free

Where:
McDowell Nature Center
15222 York Road
Charlotte, NC  28278
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Sponsor: McDowell Nature Center
Telephone: 704-588-5224
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The Schiele Museum of Natural History
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
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Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
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Cost: $13-$17

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Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
, NC
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Telephone: 704-372-6261
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Discovery Place Science
301 N. Tryon St.
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Telephone: 704--372-6261
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Cost: $7-$9

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Harvey B. Gantt Center
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Telephone: 704-547-3700
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This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

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Levine Museum of the New South
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Cost: $4-$8

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Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
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Telephone: 704-353-9200
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Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 S. Tryon St.
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Telephone: 704-353-9200
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Cost: $7-$9

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Harvey B. Gantt Center
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Booth Playhouse
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The Schiele Museum of Natural History
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Where:
The Schiele Museum of Natural History
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Where:
The Schiele Museum of Natural History
1500 E. Garrison Blvd.
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Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

"Star Gazer: A Trek Into Outer Space" combines dance and circus arts with powerful visual projections of planets, comets and asteroids to fly you through our solar system. Stella is a...

Cost: $25+

Where:
Booth Playhouse
130 N. Tryon St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-372-1000
Website »

More information

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Cost: $12+

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Children's Theatre of Charlotte
300 E. 7th St.
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Telephone: 704-973-2828
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Cost: $13-$20

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400 E. MLK Jr. Blvd.
, NC
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Telephone: 888-902-6463
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Cost: $10-$15

Where:
Charles Mack Citizen Center
215 N. Main St.
Mooresville, NC
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Celebrate the great outdoors and try something new at this festival filled with outdoor competitions, exhibitions, demos and live music. Join in the Family Adventure Race Friday...

Cost: Free admission; $5 parking fee.

Where:
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy.
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Show More...
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Attend this special storytime and learn more about Laurie Berkner's chart-topping hit "We Are the Dinosaurs," which is now a picture book.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes and Noble
Birkdale Village
8725 Townley Road
Huntersville , NC
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Telephone: 704-895-8855
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This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

Babies birth to 23 month olds and parent/caregivers can enjoy stories and activities. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library East Branch
110 Broad St.
Rockwell, NC  28138
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

Rock out with Mr. Nigel and Friends as you focus on a different instrument each week. Call store to make sure schedule has not changed. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Sam Ash Music Store
5533 Westpark Drive
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-522-9253
Website »

More information

Children ages 18 to 35 month olds and their parent/caregivers. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library East Branch
110 Broad St.
Rockwell, NC  28138
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Discover 400 years of Catawba Indian history as you explore replicated structures that reflect the life and culture of the Carolina Woodlands. Weather permitting;...

Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission.

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Celebrate the rich heritage of various Chinese ethnic festivals and folk arts in this exhibit. Presented by Tower Bridge International Education, this walkthrough presentation features multimedia...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704--372-6261
Website »

More information

Explore the moon, stars and beyond in the new planetarium. Housed in the museum's original Charlotte A. Kelly Planetarium, the dome has been retrofitted with a new Digitarium Zeta...

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Autism Society of North Carolina in partnership with our Mecklenburg County Chapter will be hosting the 15th Annual Autism Aware Fare taking place on Tuesday, April 25th. The annual dining...

Cost: Varies

Where:
Various restaurants across Mecklenburg County.
, NC


Telephone: 704-894-9678 x1615
Website »

More information

Boys and girls are invited to a Spring Tea Party with their teddy bears. Reservations required by April 21. 

Cost: Free with a new or gently-used toy

Where:
Campus Green
Winthrop University
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Preschoolers engage with books and activities that encourage language and pre-reading skills. Dress comfortably for creative movement.

Cost: Free

Where:
North County Regional Library
16500 Holly Crest Lane
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-6000
Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

Currently the only Egyptian mummy in North Carolina. Families can explore the culture and history of the 22nd Dynasty, uncover the mystery of mummification in the hands-on CSI Lab, and meet...

Cost: $6

Where:
Iredell Museums
134 Court St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-873-7347
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This original exhibit features archaeological and historical collections on loan from the Schiele Museum of Natural History, the Inn of the Patriots, and several private collectors. The display...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Tinkergarten’s skill-based curriculum is designed to help kids become well-balanced people who can problem-solve, lead, and create. It’s engaging, memorable, play-based learning, all...

Cost: Varies

Where:
Freedom Park
Princeton Ave. Entrance
Charlotte, NC  28209
View map »


Website »

More information

Children ages 4 and younger can bounce and play at discounted admission. 

Cost: $5

Where:
Monkey Joe's-University City Location
10215 University City Blvd.
Suite C
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-549-1588
Website »

More information

A storytime designed for children 18 to 35 month olds and their parent/caregivers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library South
920 Kimball Road
China Grove, NC  28023
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

A storytime designed fro children ages 18 to 35 month olds and their parent/caregiver. 30 minutes.

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library Headquarters
201 West Fisher St.
Salisbury, NC  28144
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

A storytime  for children in Pre-K to 5th grade. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library East Branch
201 West Fisher St.
Rockwell, NC  28138
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

PreK to 5th graders lean art terms, techniques and work on art projects. Children 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library East Branch
110 Broad St.
Rockwell, NC  28138
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Explore the moon, stars and beyond in the new planetarium. Housed in the museum's original Charlotte A. Kelly Planetarium, the dome has been retrofitted with a new Digitarium Zeta...

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Gently-used designer women's clothing and acessories. Wed. and Thurs., 9am-7pm; Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm; Sun., 9am-3pm. 

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

How do insects serve as pollinators and which plants love them for it? Participate in naturalist activities and a short hike. 

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-875-1391
Website »

More information

This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

Currently the only Egyptian mummy in North Carolina. Families can explore the culture and history of the 22nd Dynasty, uncover the mystery of mummification in the hands-on CSI Lab, and meet...

Cost: $6

Where:
Iredell Museums
134 Court St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-873-7347
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

A storytime designed for babies birth to 23 month olds and their parent/caregivers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library Headquarters
201 West Fisher St.
Salisbury, NC  28144
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

A storytime designed for babies birth to 23 month olds and their parent/caregivers. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library South
920 Kimball Road
China Grove, NC  28023
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

This original exhibit features archaeological and historical collections on loan from the Schiele Museum of Natural History, the Inn of the Patriots, and several private collectors. The display...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Visit the baby animals on the farm, play on the playground and get a chance to milk a cow. Takea horse ride for $5.

Cost: $7 cash per person; $5 for horse rides

Where:
Whispering Hope Farm
1405 Crowders Creek Road
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-674-8911
Website »

More information

"Wee" ones 3 years and younger and their caregivers can enjoy stories, movement with music, and a seasonal craft during.

Cost: $6

Where:
Main Street Children's Museum
133 E Main St.
Rock Hill, SC  29730
View map »


Telephone: 803-909-7244
Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

Where:
Huntersville Fire Station 1
110 S. Old Statesville Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

A storytime for children Pre-K to 5th grade.

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library South
920 Kimball Road
China Grove, NC  28023
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

PreK to 5th graders learn art terms, techniques and work on art projects. Children 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library South
920 Kimball Road
China Grove, NC  28023
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

Explore the mint museum's exhibitions.

Cost: Free

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph | 2730 Randolph Road
Mint Museum Uptown | 500 South Tryon Street
Charlotte, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2018
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Explore the moon, stars and beyond in the new planetarium. Housed in the museum's original Charlotte A. Kelly Planetarium, the dome has been retrofitted with a new Digitarium Zeta...

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Gently-used designer women's clothing and acessories. Wed. and Thurs., 9am-7pm; Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm; Sun., 9am-3pm. 

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

This storytime is filled with stories, songs, and activities specifically designed for children with autism spectrum disorders, sensory integration issues, or other developmental...

Cost: Free

Where:
ImaginOn: The Joe and Joan Martin Center
301 East Seventh St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-4630
Website »

More information

This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Preschoolers engage with books and activities that encourage language and pre-reading skills. Dress comfortably for creative movement.

Cost: Free

Where:
North County Regional Library
16500 Holly Crest Lane
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-416-6000
Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

Currently the only Egyptian mummy in North Carolina. Families can explore the culture and history of the 22nd Dynasty, uncover the mystery of mummification in the hands-on CSI Lab, and meet...

Cost: $6

Where:
Iredell Museums
134 Court St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-873-7347
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This original exhibit features archaeological and historical collections on loan from the Schiele Museum of Natural History, the Inn of the Patriots, and several private collectors. The display...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

A storytime designed for children ages 3 to 5 with their parent/caregivers. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library South
920 Kimball Road
China Grove, NC  28023
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

This storytime is designed for children ages 3 to 5 with their parent/caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library East Branch
110 Broad St.
Salisbury, NC  28138
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

This storytime is designed for children ages 3 to 5 with their parent/caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library Headquarters
201 West Fisher St.
Salisbury, NC  28144
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

Stop by the store for live musical entertainment as Tommy performs with a multitude of instruments. 

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

A storytime for children Pre-K to 5th grade. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library Headquarters
201 West Fisher St.
Salisbury, NC  28144
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

PreK to 5th graders learn art terms, techniques and work on art projects. Children 8 and under must be accompanied by an adult. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Rowan Public Library Headquarters
201 West Fisher St.
Salisbury, NC  28144
View map »


Telephone: 704-216-8228
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Explore the moon, stars and beyond in the new planetarium. Housed in the museum's original Charlotte A. Kelly Planetarium, the dome has been retrofitted with a new Digitarium Zeta...

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Gently-used designer women's clothing and acessories. Wed. and Thurs., 9am-7pm; Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm; Sun., 9am-3pm. 

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This sale will offer gently-used children's clothing, toys, equipment, and more. Grab a VIP Ticket at  http://bit.ly/2ma2Q7NThurs., 1-8pm; Fri., 10am-7pm; Sat., 9am-3pm.

Cost: Free

Where:
Carole A. Hoefener Center
601 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 218-230-0995
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Celebrate Arbor Day with a reading of the book "This Tree Counts" and then participate in related activities and crafts. Also at 2:15pm.

Cost: $10

Where:
Discovery Place KIDS
105 Gilead Road
Huntersville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-373-6261
Website »

More information

This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

NHRA drag racing returns to zMAX Dragway for the ONLY four-wide race on the NHRA schedule. Be sure to join the fastest accelerating machines on the planet as they tackle the world’s fastest...

Cost: $20+

Where:
zMax Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway
5555 Concord Parkway S.
Concord, NC  28027
View map »


Telephone: 800-455-3267
Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

Currently the only Egyptian mummy in North Carolina. Families can explore the culture and history of the 22nd Dynasty, uncover the mystery of mummification in the hands-on CSI Lab, and meet...

Cost: $6

Where:
Iredell Museums
134 Court St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-873-7347
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This original exhibit features archaeological and historical collections on loan from the Schiele Museum of Natural History, the Inn of the Patriots, and several private collectors. The display...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Sycamore Brewing
Contact Name: Katelyn Carpenter
Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

Sample food and beverages from a variety of food trucks and enjoy live entertainment at this weekly event. 

Cost: Free

Where:
329 McGill Ave. NW
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Explore the moon, stars and beyond in the new planetarium. Housed in the museum's original Charlotte A. Kelly Planetarium, the dome has been retrofitted with a new Digitarium Zeta...

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Follow enigmatic candy manufacturer Willy Wonka as he stages a contest by hiding golden tickets in five of his scrumptious candy bars. Whoever comes up with these tickets will win a free tour of...

Cost: $12+

Where:
Armour Street Theatre
307 Armour St.
Davidson, NC  28036
View map »


Telephone: 704-892-7953
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Gently-used designer women's clothing and acessories. Wed. and Thurs., 9am-7pm; Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm; Sun., 9am-3pm. 

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This sale will offer gently-used children's clothing, toys, equipment, and more. Grab a VIP Ticket at  http://bit.ly/2ma2Q7NThurs., 1-8pm; Fri., 10am-7pm; Sat., 9am-3pm.

Cost: Free

Where:
Carole A. Hoefener Center
601 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 218-230-0995
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

The Charlotte Symphony, in partnership with the Levine Museum of the New South and A Sign Of The Times of the Carolinas, invites the community to a free event employing music and storytelling to...

Cost: Free

Where:
First Baptist Church West, 1801 Oaklawn Ave.
Providence Day School, 5800 Sardis Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Family Fun Puzzle Run is a fun-for-the-whole-family 5K that starts and finishes at the Northcross Shopping Center in Huntersville, NC. After the race, enjoy children’s activities in...

Cost: $10-$25

Where:
NorthCross Shopping Center
10025 Biddick Lane
Huntersville, NC  28078
View map »


Telephone: 704-295-4037
Website »

More information

The Sarcoma Stomp Run/Walk is the signature fundraiser of The Paula Takacs Foundation for Sarcoma Research, held in Charlotte since 2011. Monies raised will stay in our community benefiting Levine...

Cost: $25-$30

Where:
Christ Lutheran Church
4519 Providence Road
Charlotte, NC  28226
View map »


Website »

More information

Saturday, April 29th is National Herb Day.  Herbs are used to add flavor to meals, snacks and even desserts. Many can be grown easily in a well-lit kitchen or small container...

Cost: Free

Where:
Charlotte Regional Farmers Market
1801 Yorkmont Road
Charlotte, NC  28217
View map »


Telephone: 704-357-1269
Website »

More information

Join the Charlotte Metrolina Civil War Roundtable and Charlotte Museum of History for our Third Annual Civil War Symposium. This year’s symposium will feature experts who examine four key...

Cost: $10; an additional $10 for lunch

Where:
The Charlotte Museum of History
3500 Shamrock Drive
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-568-1774
Website »

More information

  Children are invited to explore the sights, sounds, and fun of firetrucks, police vehicles, and more at Everything Trucks, which is part of Rock Hill's Come-See-Me Festival. 

Cost: Free

Where:
First Baptist Church
481 Hood Center Drive
Rock Hill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

Kids can participate in activities such as fishing, guided nature hikes and an outdoor scavenger hunt, craft stations, meet wildlife animal experts, and more. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Woodland Discovery
8755 Poplar Tent Road
Concord, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy activities, games, live entertainment and more than 25 educational exhibits, each with a hands-on environmental message.  Shop in the eco-marketplace for items made from...

Cost: Free

Where:
Museum of York County
4621 Mt. Gallant Road
Rock Hill, SC  29732
View map »


Website »

More information

This event is the culmination of 30 days of celebrating literacy in all children, books and cultures. Featuring author Angela Dominguez, Buddy from Dinosaur Train, bread tasting, and literacy...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-416-0556
Website »

More information

Truck Fest is an interactive event packed with fun experiences for the entire family. Explore and interact with vehicles of all kinds. Meet police officers and see the inside of a patrol...

Cost: Free

Where:
Rotary Centennial Pavilion
111 N South St.
Gastonia, NC  28052
View map »


Website »

More information

The free, public festival celebrates the vibrant cultural diversity of east Charlotte, bringing international flavor and intergenerational activities to the front lawn of Aldersgate at 3800...

Cost: Free

Where:
Aldersgate
3800 Shamrock Drive
Charlotte, NC  28215
View map »


Telephone: 704-532-5490
Website »

More information

What makes bees so special? Explore the inside of a beehive to get a glimpse of what happens inside. 

Cost: $8

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


Telephone: 704-373-6261
Website »

More information

This eclectic art crawl showcases local vendors, live street performances, a variety of food and activities for kids. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Cornelius Town Hall and Oak Street Mill
214445 Catawba Ave.
Cornelius, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Join Drums 4 Life  as they lead a drum circle, or a group of people from a few to many arranged in a circle experiencing the spontaneous creation of music on a variety of drums and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Hickory Grove Library
5935 Hickory Grove Road
Charlotte, NC  28215
View map »


Telephone: 704-335-3043
Website »

More information

Have you ever taken a look at your water bottle and wondered what kind of things the water inside may have done or where it may have been? Explore the Water Cycle with McDowell Nature Center Staff...

Cost: Free

Where:
McDowell Nature Center
15222 York Road
Charlotte, NC  28278
View map »


Telephone: 704-588-5224
Website »

More information

This 10-day festival features more than 80 activities. Take part in fun that includes music, sports, food, and frogs. See website for event schedule. 

Cost: Price varies per event

Where:
Various locations throughout Rock Hill
Rock HIll , SC


Telephone: 803-329-7625
Website »

More information

This exhibition of paintings by Harlem-based artist, Jordan Casteel, explore the intimacy and immortalization of her subjects, including family, patrons, and neighbors. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm;...

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Enjoy 1,500 square feet of bugs, butterflies, beetles, moths, flies, and other six-legged creatures from around the world. This scientific collection features real preserved specimens...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

NHRA drag racing returns to zMAX Dragway for the ONLY four-wide race on the NHRA schedule. Be sure to join the fastest accelerating machines on the planet as they tackle the world’s fastest...

Cost: $20+

Where:
zMax Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway
5555 Concord Parkway S.
Concord, NC  28027
View map »


Telephone: 800-455-3267
Website »

More information

Explore a collection of the Reverend Billy Graham;s personal timepieces—from the hourglass he kept on his desk to distinctive gifts from heads of state—all symbolizing the...

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: The Billy Graham Library
Telephone: 704-401-3256
Website »

More information

Currently the only Egyptian mummy in North Carolina. Families can explore the culture and history of the 22nd Dynasty, uncover the mystery of mummification in the hands-on CSI Lab, and meet...

Cost: $6

Where:
Iredell Museums
134 Court St.
Statesville, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-873-7347
Website »

More information

K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace is a community-created exhibit about police-involved shootings throughout the nation and here in Charlotte. Co-created with activists and law enforcement, the media,...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. Seventh St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

Learn about cord-blood stem-cell banking and its future uses.

Cost: Free

Where:
Destination Maternity
Sharon Corners
4716 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28210
View map »

More information

This original exhibit features archaeological and historical collections on loan from the Schiele Museum of Natural History, the Inn of the Patriots, and several private collectors. The display...

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-739-1019
Website »

More information

Visit the baby animals on the farm, play on the playground and get a chance to milk a cow. Takea horse ride for $5.

Cost: $7 cash per person; $5 for horse rides

Where:
Whispering Hope Farm
1405 Crowders Creek Road
Gastonia, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-674-8911
Website »

More information

Bring your mats for an hour of kids' yoga with Grounded Kids Yoga or pizza-making class from Pure Pizza for little chefs. Ten spots available each week per class. 

Cost: $10 per class

Where:
Pure Pizza
1911 Central Ave.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-430-1701
Website »

More information

Lakeshore Learning Stores provide fun, free crafts every Saturday from 11am to 3pm. Visit Bit.ly/freecraftsforkids for the featured craft of the week or call your local Lakeshore Learning store for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Lakeshore Learning Store
10005 E. Independence Blvd.
Matthews, NC  28105
View map »


Sponsor: Lakeshore Learning Store
Telephone: 704-849-2450
Website »

More information

Learn how to practice sustainable living, make upcycled crafts, play games on the lawn, listen to live music, and purchase food and beverages from local food trucks. 

Cost: $7-$13

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


Telephone: 704-825-4490
Website »

More information

GovPorch will reimagine the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center Plaza as fun, where kids and their families​​, as well as people of all ages and abilities, want to spend time...

Cost: Free

Where:
GovPorch
600 E. 4th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 704-336-8316
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Sponsor: The Schiele Museum of Natural History
Telephone: 704-866-6923
Contact Name: Philip McGinnis
Website »

More information

Experience life in 13th-century Mongolia in this exhibition that showcases the life of ruler Genghis Khan. The collection features more than 200 artifacts and relics such as gold jewelry,...

Cost: $13-$17

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Follow enigmatic candy manufacturer Willy Wonka as he stages a contest by hiding golden tickets in five of his scrumptious candy bars. Whoever comes up with these tickets will win a free tour of...

Cost: $12+

Where:
Armour Street Theatre
307 Armour St.
Davidson, NC  28036
View map »


Telephone: 704-892-7953
Website »

More information

This exhibit explores themes of motherhood, the role of women, the intensity of their hearts, and their embodiment as nature by highlighting the works of renowned artist Alison Saar....

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Gently-used designer women's clothing and acessories. Wed. and Thurs., 9am-7pm; Fri., 9am-4pm; Sat., 9am-6pm; Sun., 9am-3pm. 

Cost: Free admission

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


Website »

More information

This project looks at Appalachia fifty years after the declaration of the War on Poverty, which was originally brought to light by President Lyndon Johnson. Directed by Roger May, the...

Cost: $5-$8

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
200 E. 7th St.
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-333-1887
Website »

More information

This collection features 45 reproductions of drawings by Alberto Giacometti, made over the course of his career, from the beginning of his art training up to the portfolio's publication. To...

Cost: $4-$8

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


Telephone: 704-353-9200
Website »

More information

This collection, full of documentary photography and personal visual storytelling, provides insight into often-overlooked aspects of Black fatherhood. Tues.-Sat., 10am-5pm; Sun., 1-5pm.

Cost: $7-$9

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


Telephone: 704-547-3700
Website »

More information

Young mates set sail on a self-guided pirate voyage aboard our miniature pirate ship, the Adventure, at anchor in the Explorer's Outpost.  Children can dress-up, learn and play at their...

Cost: $6-$7

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Oasis in Space takes visitors on a voyage through the Solar System, Milky Way Galaxy, and the Universe beyond in search of liquid water--a key element for life here on Earth. Tues.-Fri., 4pm; Sat.,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Enjoy an immersive race to return to the Moon 40 years after the historic Apollo landings.  Learn about the Moon's resources and what humanity's future there might be.  Discover...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

Explore two fascinating topics in one science theater program in the Spring Sky Show. First, explore the constellations of spring in a seasonal stargazing tour of the night sky.  Then,...

Cost: $3 with paid museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-866-6923
Website »

More information

This sale will offer gently-used children's clothing, toys, equipment, and more. Grab a VIP Ticket at  http://bit.ly/2ma2Q7NThurs., 1-8pm; Fri., 10am-7pm; Sat., 9am-3pm.

Cost: Free

Where:
Carole A. Hoefener Center
601 E. 7th St.
Charlotte, NC  28202
View map »


Telephone: 218-230-0995
Website »

More information

This exhibit features artifacts that have never been seen by the public and explores how the Petty family's accomplishments on and off the track across four generations have impacted the...

Cost: $13-$20

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


Telephone: 888-902-6463
Website »

More information

The Charlotte Symphony, in partnership with the Levine Museum of the New South and A Sign Of The Times of the Carolinas, invites the community to a free event employing music and storytelling to...

Cost: Free

Where:
First Baptist Church West, 1801 Oaklawn Ave.
Providence Day School, 5800 Sardis Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

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Annual Guides

Education Guide

This comprehensive guide covers preschool, private, charter and public schools in Cabarrus, Gaston, Iredell, Lincoln, Mecklenburg, Union and York counties.

GPS [Go. Play. See.]

Your guide to raising kids in the Queen City, plus our 2016 Readers' Favorites for places to play, explore and learn with the kids.