Where to Take Your Child for Illnesses, Injuries and Accidents

Determine the best diagnosis destination


Published:

Image courtesy of FCSCAFEINE/Shutterstock.com

YOUR SON fell out of a tree house and hit his head. He is conscious, but groggy. Do you call 911? 

It’s the middle of the night and your daughter is coughing so much she can’t sleep. Do you pack her into the car and rush to the emergency room, or make her as comfortable as you can and wait until your pediatrician’s office opens in the morning? 

In stressful moments, making a quick judgment call about where to seek help can be daunting. Do you head to the ER, urgent care, your pediatrician — or can you find the information you need through an online doctor? Before you decide, consider the pros and cons of your options.


Emergency Room

When there’s blood, or a moaning child, many parents choose to take their child to the ER out of pure panic. And, according to Dr. Clay Bordley, M.D., an associate professor of pediatrics and chief of the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, this can absolutely be the right choice. “If the issue is truly life-threatening, you will be seen efficiently and quickly, and you will have access to all the resources the hospital has to offer,” Bordley says, adding that Duke University Medical Center, like UNC Medical Center and other hospitals in North Carolina, have a special pediatrics unit of emergency care. 

On the other hand, if the ER triage determines your child is not in immediate danger, you may have to wait for hours. And, “the waiting area can be less than pleasant, especially on a Friday or Saturday night, when there can be some drunkenness and unruly behavior,” Bordley says. You might also see some unsightly injuries, which can be upsetting to a child.

“We’ve built some of our own problems,” Bordley says. “There are no appointments needed, you don’t have to pay for anything up front and there’s valet parking. It’s certainly an expensive way to provide care.” He adds that “in the heat of the moment” parents are thinking about their child, not about how much a trip to the ER costs our health care system. “We absolutely get that,” he says. And, if you do bring your child to the ER, he adds, he or she will get high-quality care — it “just may take a while”. 


Urgent Care

“Urgent care can be a great option,” says Dr. Ty Bristol, M.D., pediatrician and medical director at UNC Pediatrics of Panther Creek in Cary. These centers offer extended hours and other resources a pediatrician’s office won’t have, like medication to treat serious asthma attacks, X-ray equipment and the ability to stitch minor wounds. Like the ER, urgent care staff will triage patients — and take those who have the most serious health issues first. So again, there may be a wait. 

If you go to an urgent care center (or the ER), just make sure you let your regular pediatrician know about the visit. “You and your pediatrician are partners,” Bristol says. “A pediatrician will see the bigger picture. You might go to the UC for a urine infection and promptly get the medicine you need, but the UC doctor might completely overlook an issue of ongoing constipation, which might have caused the infection.” 


Pediatrician

Dr. Martha Perry, M.D., medical director of the UNC Children’s Primary Care Clinic in Chapel Hill, says the “majority of the care that kids need can be found in their pediatrician’s office.” The primary difference between taking a child to the ER or urgent care center and your child’s pediatrician is the long-term relationship you ideally develop with your pediatrician. Such a relationship, Perry says, addresses “whole health” issues and should lead to preventative rather than ameliorative care. 

“If a pediatrician sees the emergency situation, [he or she] can look at all of the child’s records to understand whether it’s a one-time illness or a pattern or long-term condition,” she says. “They can also help with recovery, strengthening and rehab.” 

Being available to patients is an important part of addressing whole health issues. Perry notes that many pediatric offices offer expanded hours that include the availability of walk-in visits during weekends. 


On-Call Professionals

Increasingly, there are other off-hour options as well. Private on-call doctors and nurses are available to come to your house. Nurse practitioner Tiffany Lightner Menist of Branch Out Pediatrics PLLC in Charlotte chose to leave a large practice after 10 years because she wanted to make a more personal connection with her patients. While she encourages patients to visit pediatricians for annual checkups and vaccinations, she can take care of everything from sports physicals to strep throat and asthma treatments. Menist limits the number of families she sees in order to establish deeper connections with her patients and respond quickly to their needs. Home visits, she says, decrease anxiety for everyone.

“Parents don’t have to pack all their kids into the car, and sick kids can stay in their PJs in their own bed,” she says. Home visits can be particularly great for new mothers who may want to avoid exposing their newborns to other sick kids. Insurance typically won’t cover this type of practice, but Menist says her patients appreciate the lack of paperwork and simplicity of an upfront payment. 


Telehealth

If you’re comfortable with technology and your child has a non-urgent medical issue, consider a telehealth company. This online health care option allows you to schedule a call or video conference with a board-certified physician at any time, from any place. One such option is UNC Urgent Care 24/7, a partnership between UNC Hospitals and MDLIVE, a Florida-based telehealth company that has been in business since 2009. While MDLIVE physicians can’t staunch bleeding or set broken bones, they can evaluate a child for flu, pink eye, ear infections, insect bites and rashes, to name a few of the 50 or so illnesses they typically treat. And they can prescribe certain basic medications. 

“You can’t pick a time when you’re sick,” says Michelle Rider, senior vice president of marketing at MDLIVE. “Our app is affordable, easy to use and great for an illness that strikes off-hours, like over the weekend, in the middle of the night, or when you’re on vacation, far away from your usual pediatrician.” 

Again, it’s best to inform your pediatrician when any of your child’s health issues are addressed outside of the office. Rider points out that upon request, MDLIVE will provide physician notes to your regular pediatrician following a virtual appointment. For more information, visit uncurgentcare247.com or mdlive.com. 


Online Resources 

When asked about the reliability of online medical resources, Bristol cautions that while some sites can be helpful, there’s “plenty of questionable advice out there.” 

Bristol, Bordley and Perry all agree that the American Academy of Pediatrics’ website, aap.org, is a reliable source of online information. Perry says the AAP has endorsed healthychildren.org, kidshealth.org and mayoclinic.org. Bristol suggests sharing the information you find online with your doctor and asking him or her what he or she thinks.  


When in Doubt

“If you are in doubt, and you feel you have time, the best thing to do is to call your pediatrician’s office,” Bristol says. 

Most practices have a nurse triage line, as well as an on-call pediatrician. These nurses are trained to determine the severity of your child’s situation and can recommend a course of action over the phone. 

“It’s impossible for a parent to understand all the nuances of an illness,” Bristol says. 

Perry adds that a nurse or doctor can often walk a parent through what he or she needs to do to prevent a visit to the ER, which is ultimately better for everyone.


Where to Go for Common Ailments

Here are some common ailments and where medical professionals suggest you go for treatment. 

Note: Newborns under the age of 3 months with any kind of health issue should be seen promptly. Urgent care centers typically don’t offer pediatric expertise for this age group, so be sure to call in advance, consult your pediatrician and, when necessary, go to the ER. 

 

Fever

Dr. Clay Bordley, M.D., an associate professor of pediatrics and chief of the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Duke University Medical Center, says fever is one of the most common reasons parents take a child to the ER and yet, he adds, it is rarely an emergency. 

“It’s not the number on the thermometer, it's how the child looks and whether it’s combined with another serious symptom,” he says. 

Infants are a special case. While a 104-degree fever may simply mean your 5-year-old’s immune system is at work, a fever of even 100 degrees can indicate a serious infection in an infant.

If your child’s fever is accompanied by other symptoms, such as crying,
which may signal pain; stiffness or unresponsiveness; or if a fever lasts longer than several days, call your physician. 

If your child’s fever responds well to pain relievers and he has had the fever for only a couple of days, keep your child comfortable and well hydrated, and give your pediatrician a call if you have any concerns. 


Respiratory Issues 

If a child’s airway is even partially blocked and he is choking, turning blue or otherwise having trouble breathing, he needs to be seen immediately. Call 911 for assistance or head to the ER. 

Most urgent care sites can help with illnesses that are not life-threatening, such as asthma attacks, pneumonia, bronchitis, strep throat and other upper respiratory issues. 

If coughing, congestion or chest pain make breathing uncomfortable for your child, call and/or schedule a visit with your pediatrician.


Breaks, Sprains and Fractures

Bordley says the ER works closely with local urgent care sites to cover varying degrees of bone injuries. Most of these centers have X-ray equipment and the expertise to deal with minor breaks. If there is an obvious fracture — e.g., the bone is pointing in the wrong direction or has punctured the skin — you will need to go to the ER. An ER should have specialists who can deal with repair, as well as anesthesiologists to provide sedation for children as needed. 

If the injury is painful or swollen and doesn’t seem to improve after a day or two, call your pediatrician. While pediatric offices don’t usually accommodate X-ray equipment, Bristol says some pediatricians will look at photographs via text message of the injury and be able to suggest the next best step. 

If the injury is swollen and bruised, but your child is able to put weight on it or otherwise use it, then ice the injury on and off for the first few hours and keep it elevated. Call your doctor’s office for further advice about wrapping it and keeping it immobilized. 


Neurological Issues 

Bordley advises calling 911 or going straight to the ER if your child hits her head and is unconscious or nonresponsive, throwing up repeatedly, disoriented, has severe headaches or displays personality changes. 

If your child is experiencing a minor concussion, an urgent care physician or your pediatrician can perform a neurological and cognitive checkup to assess whether she needs additional care at a hospital. 


Stomach Issues/Poisoning

If you suspect your child has swallowed something hazardous (e.g., a small battery, cleaning liquid, unauthorized medication, etc.), and is unconscious or having convulsions or seizures, call 911. If you think your child has swallowed something hazardous but does not appear to have any reaction, call Poison Control immediately at 800-222-1222, or call 911. 

If your child’s stomach pain is severe and accompanied by fever, vomiting, difficulty breathing or lightheadedness, call your pediatrician or head to the urgent care. 

If your child has a stomachache but is able to keep down fluids, keep him or her home for observation. If the pain persists, call your pediatrician. 


Skin Issues/Bleeding

Head to the ER if an accident, animal bite or other injury causes extensive damage or uncontrolled bleeding, or if your child has an allergic reaction to a bug bite or sting, or an infection from an animal bite. Rashes accompanied by a high fever should also be addressed in the ER. 

An urgent care center is a good place to go for minor cuts that need stitching. However, most centers are not pediatric-specific and do not provide anesthetics. 

Typically, a pediatrician’s office does not provide stitching for cuts (call in advance to find out). Your pediatrician's office is a good place to go for a rash or other recurring skin conditions. 


Recurring Medical Issues 

If you find yourself repeatedly relying on the ER or the urgent care center for your child’s recurring health issue, consider a different approach. While it is vital to get your child’s breathing under control if he has a severe asthma attack or allergic reaction, a visit to the ER is only a temporary solution. 

Dr. Sheila Kilbane, M.D., an integrative medical practitioner in Charlotte, suggests looking at a child’s diet, allergies and personal environment to come up with a whole health solution. Kilbane takes a limited number of patients, which allows her to conduct thorough testing to identify the “trigger” for a child’s medical issue. She says she enjoys the detective work, combing through records and getting to know her patients as she solves each problem, and she has had great success in treating issues such as colic, reflux, ear infections, eczema, constipation, allergies and asthma. 

Most of Kilbane’s patients adopt an anti-inflammatory diet. “It is important to address what’s going on in the gut,” she says. “Research on the microbiome is exploding and, with a lot of these illnesses, research shows it’s triggered by food sensitivity. Dairy and eggs are a big culprit.” 

Kilbane also finds issues that exist in a child’s environment, whether this ends up being dust mites in a mattress, or an allergy to local vegetation. She typically works with a patient for about a year. 

“Once we’ve found the underlying trigger and reduced the symptoms through diet and environmental control, the patient goes back to relying on their pediatrician and continuing with the integrative solution on their own.” 

Insurance does not usually cover integrative health services, and Kilbane knows this makes it difficult for some families, so she has published “Healthy Kids Happy Moms: A Step-by-Step Guide to Improving Many Common Childhood Illnessses” and offers several online courses on her website, sheilakilbane.com.


Caitlin Wheeler is a Parenting Media Association gold-winning freelance writer who lives in Durham.

 

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Telephone: 704-372-6261
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More information

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Cost: $6-$7, includes museum admission

Where:
Schiele Museum
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View map »


Telephone: 704-866-6908
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More information

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

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Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
420 South Tryon St.
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View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
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4400 Sharon Road
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View map »

More information

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

Where:
Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
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, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $12-$17

Where:
Southpark Mall
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View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

Where:
Levine Museum of the New South
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View map »


Website »

More information

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View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: 99.00

Where:
Online
PO Box 178
Charlotte, NC  27609
View map »


Sponsor: Reawaken Your Brilliance
Telephone: 191-955-93925
Contact Name: Julie Coraccio
Website »

More information

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Website »

More information

This informative program, led by a College Foundation of North Carolina representative, will discuss FAFSA and how to find resources to help pay for college.

Cost: Free

Where:
Beatties Ford Road Regional Library
2412 Beatties Ford Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Tour the LATIBAH artist T’Afo Feimster’s representation of the Reconstruction period with the theme of “Redefining Black America”. A combination of life-size exhibits and smaller art pieces...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, 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

Seven skilled acrobats push their physical limits without reserve. Supported by driving percussion, immersed in every moment, A Simple Space evokes real responses in audiences, visceral rather...

Cost: $19.50+

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


Website »

More information

This weekly story time includes classic tales and new favorites.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Join Rutherford Rabbit to enjoy a seasonally themed story and craft activity in the Children’s Garden. Children can water vegetable plants, dig for worms, and explore the sensory and...

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members

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


Website »

More information

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

Cost: $8

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


Website »

More information

Winter Wonderland will open an hour early for $10 Tuesday Tot Time every Tuesday! Parents can pull little ones on sleds.

Cost: $10

Where:
Winter Wonderland SouthPark
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »

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 join story time with other families. 

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-364-0626
Website »

More information

Bring your little one to Perfect Balance Training Center for "Tot Time" - an hour of free play in the gym. There is no instructor, so parents are in charge of their children. No need...

Cost: $5-$6

Where:
Perfect Balance
8850 Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-299-8445
Website »

More information

Celebrate Australia’s independence with aboriginal dot art painting. Learn more about this unique art form and then create a masterpiece to take home.

Cost: $13-$17, free for children younger than 2, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Play video games, board games, foosball and more with others.

Cost: $6

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

Throwback pricing on tickets (starting at $1) and concessions courtesy of Rolle Oral and Facial Surgery

Cost: Starting at $1.00

Where:
Bojangles' Coliseum
2700 E. Independence Blvd.
Charlotte, NC  28205
View map »


Website »

More information

Create custom graphic and grip tape on a blank skate board deck using spray paint, hand cut, stencils and paint pens. Instruction, materials, deck and grip are included.

Cost: $50

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


Website »

More information

Visit the first-ever Schleich pop-up shop, a unique, hands-on destination for imaginative play, at SouthPark Mall! The Charlotte-based toy company’s standalone store offers fun-filled activities...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28211
View map »

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

The program is designed to provide girls the opportunity to express themselves, gain an experience in different activities and assist in developmental growth through socialization.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 980-314-1122
Website »

More information

Get one free child ticket with the purchase of an adult ticket on Tuesdays. Each additional child (ages 3-12) receives a discount as well, costing only $5 each. 

Cost: $15 for adult

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


Telephone: 866-229-1573
Website »

More information

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

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Experience the immersive world of bugs and their amazing abilities that inspire human innovation. Larger-than-life bug models guide a journey through hands-on activities and challenges. Get up...

Cost: $13-$17, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

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

This adaptation of the best-selling Disney-Hyperion novel by Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is a must-see for Percy Jackson fans. Jan. 15 at 7:30pm, Jan....

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

To further unite the nation, in 2018 For Freedoms launched a 50 State Initiative in which multiple organizations and events embodied an array of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art,...

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

Come ice skating at SouthPark Mall! Hours are Mon.-Thurs., 3-11pm; Fri. 3pm-12am; Sat. 11am-12pm; Sun. 11am-11pm.

Cost: $12-$17

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


Website »

More information

With artistic dialogue, the Through this Lens community will offer our larger community a look through the many lenses of the immigrant experience.

Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Do you keep saying you’ll get organized someday, but someday never comes? Are you overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted by your clutter? Would you like to save time and money while reducing your...

Cost: 99.00

Where:
Online
PO Box 178
Charlotte, NC  27609
View map »


Sponsor: Reawaken Your Brilliance
Telephone: 191-955-93925
Contact Name: Julie Coraccio
Website »

More information

Children learn about language and literacy through play. Drop in for this self-directed play day.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Discover the science of probability through books, hands-on educational activities and experiments. Registration is required.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Explore and listen for nocturnal animals while getting some exercise. Registration required.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 980- 314-1128
Website »

More information

Tour the LATIBAH artist T’Afo Feimster’s representation of the Reconstruction period with the theme of “Redefining Black America”. A combination of life-size exhibits and smaller art pieces...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, 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

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

These wintry themed classes will incorporate props, musical instruments and board books to focus upon developmental milestones.

Cost: $5

Where:
Piedmont Music Therapy, LLC
220 Westinghouse Blvd.
Suite 402
, 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 join story time with other families. 

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-364-0626
Website »

More information

Bring your little one to Perfect Balance Training Center for "Tot Time" - an hour of free play in the gym. There is no instructor, so parents are in charge of their children. No need...

Cost: $5-$6

Where:
Perfect Balance
8850 Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-299-8445
Website »

More information

Celebrate Australia’s independence with aboriginal dot art painting. Learn more about this unique art form and then create a masterpiece to take home.

Cost: $13-$17, free for children younger than 2, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Come improve bowl skating skills, such as finding new lines plus improving airs and grinds

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Families will work with local artists to contribute to a permanent art installation that will be displayed at the Scaleybark Library.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Explore the Mint Museum's exhibitions.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Revolution Park Sports Academy

More information

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

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

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

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Experience the immersive world of bugs and their amazing abilities that inspire human innovation. Larger-than-life bug models guide a journey through hands-on activities and challenges. Get up...

Cost: $13-$17, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

Visit the first-ever Schleich pop-up shop, a unique, hands-on destination for imaginative play, at SouthPark Mall! The Charlotte-based toy company’s standalone store offers fun-filled activities...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28211
View map »

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

This adaptation of the best-selling Disney-Hyperion novel by Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is a must-see for Percy Jackson fans. Jan. 15 at 7:30pm, Jan....

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

In his delicately rendered sculptures, Michael Sherrill seeks to elicit a sense of wonder from viewers.

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Visitors explore a dynamic and diverse dress tradition and the increasingly interconnected fashion worlds that it inhabits. See "popular" garments, runway fashions designed by...

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

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph
2730 Randolph Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

Many factors must be weighed when exhibiting a work of art, from framing to installation to critical contextualization. This exhibition examines the different considerations that go into displaying...

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

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


Website »

More information

"Latin Americans in Paris" presents selected Latin American artists who moved to Paris in the mid-20th century to live and work. Their presence in Europe initiated a cultural and...

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

To further unite the nation, in 2018 For Freedoms launched a 50 State Initiative in which multiple organizations and events embodied an array of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art,...

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

Come ice skating at SouthPark Mall! Hours are Mon.-Thurs., 3-11pm; Fri. 3pm-12am; Sat. 11am-12pm; Sun. 11am-11pm.

Cost: $12-$17

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


Website »

More information

Help break in the new Small Hands Big Art studio!  In December and early January, enroll in a Getting to Know You Class for a special introductory price. See website for class times, which...

Cost: $10

Where:
Small Hands Big Art - Fort Mill
1365 Broadcloth St.
Suite 105
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

With artistic dialogue, the Through this Lens community will offer our larger community a look through the many lenses of the immigrant experience.

Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

The exhibition presents more than 100 works from the Bechtler collection that have never been on view to the public. Bechtler will be highlighting works from well-known artists including but not...

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

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Tour the LATIBAH artist T’Afo Feimster’s representation of the Reconstruction period with the theme of “Redefining Black America”. A combination of life-size exhibits and smaller art pieces...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, 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

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

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

Cost: $8

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


Website »

More information

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

Bring your little one to Perfect Balance Training Center for "Tot Time" - an hour of free play in the gym. There is no instructor, so parents are in charge of their children. No need...

Cost: $5-$6

Where:
Perfect Balance
8850 Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-299-8445
Website »

More information

Visit the first-ever Schleich pop-up shop, a unique, hands-on destination for imaginative play, at SouthPark Mall! The Charlotte-based toy company’s standalone store offers fun-filled activities...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28211
View map »

More information

These wintry themed classes will incorporate props, musical instruments and board books to focus upon developmental milestones.

Cost: $5

Where:
Piedmont Music Therapy, LLC
220 Westinghouse Blvd.
Suite 402
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Celebrate Australia’s independence with aboriginal dot art painting. Learn more about this unique art form and then create a masterpiece to take home.

Cost: $13-$17, free for children younger than 2, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Experience the immersive world of bugs and their amazing abilities that inspire human innovation. Larger-than-life bug models guide a journey through hands-on activities and challenges. Get up...

Cost: $13-$17, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

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

This adaptation of the best-selling Disney-Hyperion novel by Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is a must-see for Percy Jackson fans. Jan. 15 at 7:30pm, Jan....

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

Do you keep saying you’ll get organized someday, but someday never comes? Are you overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted by your clutter? Would you like to save time and money while reducing your...

Cost: 99.00

Where:
Online
PO Box 178
Charlotte, NC  27609
View map »


Sponsor: Reawaken Your Brilliance
Telephone: 191-955-93925
Contact Name: Julie Coraccio
Website »

More information

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

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

In his delicately rendered sculptures, Michael Sherrill seeks to elicit a sense of wonder from viewers.

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Visitors explore a dynamic and diverse dress tradition and the increasingly interconnected fashion worlds that it inhabits. See "popular" garments, runway fashions designed by...

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

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph
2730 Randolph Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

Many factors must be weighed when exhibiting a work of art, from framing to installation to critical contextualization. This exhibition examines the different considerations that go into displaying...

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

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


Website »

More information

"Latin Americans in Paris" presents selected Latin American artists who moved to Paris in the mid-20th century to live and work. Their presence in Europe initiated a cultural and...

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

To further unite the nation, in 2018 For Freedoms launched a 50 State Initiative in which multiple organizations and events embodied an array of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art,...

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

Come ice skating at SouthPark Mall! Hours are Mon.-Thurs., 3-11pm; Fri. 3pm-12am; Sat. 11am-12pm; Sun. 11am-11pm.

Cost: $12-$17

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


Website »

More information

Help break in the new Small Hands Big Art studio!  In December and early January, enroll in a Getting to Know You Class for a special introductory price. See website for class times, which...

Cost: $10

Where:
Small Hands Big Art - Fort Mill
1365 Broadcloth St.
Suite 105
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

With artistic dialogue, the Through this Lens community will offer our larger community a look through the many lenses of the immigrant experience.

Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

The exhibition presents more than 100 works from the Bechtler collection that have never been on view to the public. Bechtler will be highlighting works from well-known artists including but not...

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

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Celebrate everyone’s favorite “silly old bear.” Bring a stuffed animal, and journey through the Hundred Acre Woods.

Cost: $10, included with museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Visit the first-ever Schleich pop-up shop, a unique, hands-on destination for imaginative play, at SouthPark Mall! The Charlotte-based toy company’s standalone store offers fun-filled activities...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28211
View map »

More information

Together as a family, participants will create games and activities while learning from nature. Pre-registration is required for all participants.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 980-314-1128
Website »

More information

Join friends for good times, good food and a lot of dancing with other teens and adults with disabilities.

Cost: $10

Where:
Marion Diehl Park
2219 Tyvola Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Explore McDowell Nature Preserve after dark in search of these nocturnal wonders of the sky!

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 980-314-1128
Website »

More information

Tour the LATIBAH artist T’Afo Feimster’s representation of the Reconstruction period with the theme of “Redefining Black America”. A combination of life-size exhibits and smaller art pieces...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, 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

The local puppeteer troupe from MyGym Lake Norman will lead an interactive and imaginative puppet show with songs and book readings.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes and Noble - Birkdale Village
8725 Townley Road
Huntersville, 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

Bring your little one to Perfect Balance Training Center for "Tot Time" - an hour of free play in the gym. There is no instructor, so parents are in charge of their children. No need...

Cost: $5-$6

Where:
Perfect Balance
8850 Monroe Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 980-299-8445
Website »

More information

Celebrate Australia’s independence with aboriginal dot art painting. Learn more about this unique art form and then create a masterpiece to take home.

Cost: $13-$17, free for children younger than 2, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

Participants will can choose from a wide variety of activities as well as a specialized activity that varies weekly.

Cost: $6

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


Website »

More information

The Southpark Mall Microsoft store will be hosting a free ASUS ROG Arena: Fortnite Fridays Tournament! All skill levels are welcome.

Cost: Free

Where:
Microsoft
4400 Sharon Road
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Microsoft
Website »

More information

Connect with community members while participating in Acts of Kindness, center projects and charitable deeds.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

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

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Experience the immersive world of bugs and their amazing abilities that inspire human innovation. Larger-than-life bug models guide a journey through hands-on activities and challenges. Get up...

Cost: $13-$17, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

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

Set in 1926, this fast-paced musical dinner show offers Southern food with classic Southern songs. Watch the gospel truths unfold through the eyes and imagination of Tennessee! See website for...

Cost: $10-$37

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


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

More information

This adaptation of the best-selling Disney-Hyperion novel by Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is a must-see for Percy Jackson fans. Jan. 15 at 7:30pm, Jan....

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

Judy and her brother, Stink, set sail to find Scurvy Sam’s secret pirate treasure. To find the loot, they’ll have to race their swashbuckling rivals, Tall Boy and Smart Girl, to see who...

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

In his delicately rendered sculptures, Michael Sherrill seeks to elicit a sense of wonder from viewers.

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Visitors explore a dynamic and diverse dress tradition and the increasingly interconnected fashion worlds that it inhabits. See "popular" garments, runway fashions designed by...

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

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph
2730 Randolph Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

Many factors must be weighed when exhibiting a work of art, from framing to installation to critical contextualization. This exhibition examines the different considerations that go into displaying...

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

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


Website »

More information

"Latin Americans in Paris" presents selected Latin American artists who moved to Paris in the mid-20th century to live and work. Their presence in Europe initiated a cultural and...

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

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


Website »

More information

Do you keep saying you’ll get organized someday, but someday never comes? Are you overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted by your clutter? Would you like to save time and money while reducing your...

Cost: 99.00

Where:
Online
PO Box 178
Charlotte, NC  27609
View map »


Sponsor: Reawaken Your Brilliance
Telephone: 191-955-93925
Contact Name: Julie Coraccio
Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

To further unite the nation, in 2018 For Freedoms launched a 50 State Initiative in which multiple organizations and events embodied an array of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art,...

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

Come ice skating at SouthPark Mall! Hours are Mon.-Thurs., 3-11pm; Fri. 3pm-12am; Sat. 11am-12pm; Sun. 11am-11pm.

Cost: $12-$17

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


Website »

More information

Help break in the new Small Hands Big Art studio!  In December and early January, enroll in a Getting to Know You Class for a special introductory price. See website for class times, which...

Cost: $10

Where:
Small Hands Big Art - Fort Mill
1365 Broadcloth St.
Suite 105
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

With artistic dialogue, the Through this Lens community will offer our larger community a look through the many lenses of the immigrant experience.

Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

The exhibition presents more than 100 works from the Bechtler collection that have never been on view to the public. Bechtler will be highlighting works from well-known artists including but not...

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

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


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Visit the first-ever Schleich pop-up shop, a unique, hands-on destination for imaginative play, at SouthPark Mall! The Charlotte-based toy company’s standalone store offers fun-filled activities...

Cost: Free

Where:
SouthPark Mall
4400 Sharon Road
Charlotte, NC  28211
View map »

More information

Run through the city. Stick around for the post-race party with chocolate fondue, dippable snacks, hot chocolate, DJ and a Kid Zone with inflatables and games.

Cost: $54-$74

Where:
First Ward Park
, NC


Website »

More information

Hike on the Cattail Trail with the family. Stop to enjoy the view along the water while kids create winter artwork inspired by nature. Registration Required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Latta Plantation Nature Preserve
6211 Sample Road
Huntersville, NC  28078
View map »


Telephone: 980-314-1129
Website »

More information

Discover what animals are out and about while enjoying a morning outdoors. Come back to the nature center after the hike to warm up with a cup of hot cocoa. Registration required.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 980- 314-1128
Website »

More information

Explore the ancient ways of tracking, and become in tune with nature.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

See vendors and enjoy free activities, including a fun photo booth, mommy makeovers, henna tattoos, costume characters, baby bump painting, face painting, prizes and informative classes.

Cost: Free

Where:
Heritage Conference Center Grand Ballroom
375 Star Light Drive
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Sponsor: Touch of Magic Events

More information

Altitude Trampoline Park is excited to announce the official grand opening celebration of its Gastonia location, which will include: climbing contest, ninja course contest and neon night with...

Cost: Free for first 100 guests

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

More information

Enjoy a family-friendly storytelling performance in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day! Minter is the Coordinator for Frontline Storytellers, an award-winning local and national program and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Mooresville Public Library
304 South Main St.
Mooresville, NC
View map »


Sponsor: Mooresville Public Library
Website »

More information

Participants will complete a two-hour workshop with visual art activities while being entertained by music. Refreshments will be served.

Cost: Free

Where:
Tyvola Senior Center
2225 Tyvola Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Honor the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by taking part in family-friendly service projects. Locations: Blythe Elementary School, Huntersville East Mecklenburg High...

Cost: Free

Where:
Multiple Locations
, NC


Website »

More information

The Traveling Blue Series program is sponsored by Culture Blocks, a community partnership between ASC, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library and Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation to bring arts and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Beatties Ford Road Regional Library
2412 Beatties Ford Road
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

 Seeds, flower buds, essential oils and a natural soap base will all blend together to form bars of soap.

Cost: $12

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


Website »

More information

  NASCAR Night - Autograph session and appearances by Kurt Busch, Ryan Newman, Joey Logano, Regan Smith and Corey LaJoie Family Night presented by Fairfield Inn and Suites - save 40 percent on...

Cost: Starting at $18.50

Where:
Bojangles' Coliseum
2700 E. Independence Blvd.
Charlotte, NC  28205
View map »


Website »

More information

Drop in to create a take-home winter craft.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Bike Riders is open to any age with a disability/diagnosis. Register for a 30-minute time slot to work on bike riding skills indoors. Bikes and helmets provided.

Cost: Free

Where:
Marion Diehl Recreation Center
2219 Tyvola Road
, NC
View map »

More information

Arts+ will provide a visual art workshop series. Live music will accompany the art-making experience.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Watch the Charlotte Hornets take on the Phoenix Suns.

Cost: Tickets start at $18

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


Telephone: 1-877-582-9297
Website »

More information

Come NASCAR Night, Girl Scout Night and Family Night. Families save 40 percent on groups of four tickets when purchasing online.

Cost: $18.50+

Where:
Bojangles' Coliseum
2700 E. Independence Blvd.
, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Tour the LATIBAH artist T’Afo Feimster’s representation of the Reconstruction period with the theme of “Redefining Black America”. A combination of life-size exhibits and smaller art pieces...

Cost: Free

Where:
Sugar Creek Library
4045 North Tryon St.
Suite A
, 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

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

Digi-Bridge will host a course of STEAM learning activities featuring the Lego WeDo 2.0 kits. Register at digi-bridge.org! There are locations at Hurt Hub@Davidson, Hygge West on Remount Road in...

Cost: $30

Where:
Hurt Hub@Davidson
210 Delburg St.
Davidson, NC  28036
View map »


Sponsor: Digi-Bridge
Website »

More information

Music and Movement activities for ages one, two and three! All ages are welcome to attend, and infants receive free admission. Come jam to stories and songs!

Cost: $2 per child

Where:
UWI- Kidz Greenhouse Cafe
5237 Albemarle Road
Suites 211-213
, NC
View map »


Sponsor: United World Initiative's
Website »

More information

Learn new tricks on the baby quarter while utilizing them in a group game of S.K.A.T.E.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Celebrate National Popcorn Day, and explore the three most common states of matter with food! First, learn about our favorite movie snack by reading "The Popcorn Book" by Tomie de Paola....

Cost: $10, included with museum admission

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


Website »

More information

Celebrate Australia’s independence with aboriginal dot art painting. Learn more about this unique art form and then create a masterpiece to take home.

Cost: $13-$17, free for children younger than 2, included with admission

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


Website »

More information

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

Cost: Free

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


Sponsor: Revolution Park Sports Academy

More information

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

Cost: $4-$12, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-636-2889
Website »

More information

Do you keep saying you’ll get organized someday, but someday never comes? Are you overwhelmed, anxious and exhausted by your clutter? Would you like to save time and money while reducing your...

Cost: 99.00

Where:
Online
PO Box 178
Charlotte, NC  27609
View map »


Sponsor: Reawaken Your Brilliance
Telephone: 191-955-93925
Contact Name: Julie Coraccio
Website »

More information

Experience the immersive world of bugs and their amazing abilities that inspire human innovation. Larger-than-life bug models guide a journey through hands-on activities and challenges. Get up...

Cost: $13-$17, children younger than 2 free, includes museum admission

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


Telephone: 704-372-6261
Website »

More information

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

Set in 1926, this fast-paced musical dinner show offers Southern food with classic Southern songs. Watch the gospel truths unfold through the eyes and imagination of Tennessee! See website for...

Cost: $10-$37

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


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

More information

This adaptation of the best-selling Disney-Hyperion novel by Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical is a must-see for Percy Jackson fans. Jan. 15 at 7:30pm, Jan....

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

Judy and her brother, Stink, set sail to find Scurvy Sam’s secret pirate treasure. To find the loot, they’ll have to race their swashbuckling rivals, Tall Boy and Smart Girl, to see who...

Cost: $25+

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


Website »

More information

In his delicately rendered sculptures, Michael Sherrill seeks to elicit a sense of wonder from viewers.

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Visitors explore a dynamic and diverse dress tradition and the increasingly interconnected fashion worlds that it inhabits. See "popular" garments, runway fashions designed by...

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

Where:
Mint Museum Randolph
2730 Randolph Road
, NC
View map »


Telephone: 704-337-2000
Website »

More information

Many factors must be weighed when exhibiting a work of art, from framing to installation to critical contextualization. This exhibition examines the different considerations that go into displaying...

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

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


Website »

More information

"Latin Americans in Paris" presents selected Latin American artists who moved to Paris in the mid-20th century to live and work. Their presence in Europe initiated a cultural and...

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

To further unite the nation, in 2018 For Freedoms launched a 50 State Initiative in which multiple organizations and events embodied an array of voices and sparked a national dialogue about art,...

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

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


Website »

More information

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

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

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


Website »

More information

Hank Willis Thomas is a conceptual artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. The exhibit investigates 20th century protests, reminding museum goers that societal tumult is part of a hard-fought...

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

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


Website »

More information

Come ice skating at SouthPark Mall! Hours are Mon.-Thurs., 3-11pm; Fri. 3pm-12am; Sat. 11am-12pm; Sun. 11am-11pm.

Cost: $12-$17

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


Website »

More information

Help break in the new Small Hands Big Art studio!  In December and early January, enroll in a Getting to Know You Class for a special introductory price. See website for class times, which...

Cost: $10

Where:
Small Hands Big Art - Fort Mill
1365 Broadcloth St.
Suite 105
Fort Mill, SC
View map »


Website »

More information

With artistic dialogue, the Through this Lens community will offer our larger community a look through the many lenses of the immigrant experience.

Cost: $6-$10, children 5 and younger free

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


Website »

More information

The exhibition presents more than 100 works from the Bechtler collection that have never been on view to the public. Bechtler will be highlighting works from well-known artists including but not...

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

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


Website »

More information

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Annual Guides

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

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

Education Guide

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