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CHARLOTTE THANKSGIVING EVENTS AND HAPPENINGS November 24, 2014

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Charlotte is in happy anticipation of the holiday season as Thanksgiving fast approaches! The Queen City offers a cornucopia of holiday events for families and visitors to enjoy this 2014 season of celebration.

Charlotte offers a tiny bite of shivering temperatures just to let us know it is winter; but Mother Nature shines on our beautiful Southern city throughout the year. Our spectacular climate lets us enjoy outdoor skating without the shivering! WBT Holiday on Ice runs through January 4th. Skating outdoors in the South is a fun treat, especially amongst the beautiful holiday decorations in Uptown Charlotte.

Celebrate giving thanks at the Novant Health Thanksgiving Parade! This pageant has all the parade necessities: floats, dignitaries, marching bands and vocal artists. The fun is on November 27th, 9:30 am, Tryon Street.

People of all faiths can enjoy an inspirational evening at the 39th Annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service at the Park Church, 6029 Beatties Ford Road on Tuesday, November 25, 6:30-8:30pm. The message will be “Love in the Midst of Difficulty”. Rev. Ophelia Garmon -Brown, Rabbi Judy Schindler, Rev. Christy Snow and the Rev. Sofia McGuire will be presenters, as well as music by MeckMin Interfaith Choirs and Ensembles, The Park Choir and much more!

Enjoy the sounds of the season at the Charlotte Symphony Junior and Youth Orchestras Fall Concert at Halton Theater. The CYSO was founded in 1961 and includes over 180 musicians from more than 60 schools in the greater Charlotte area. Enjoy the wonderful sound of music on November 25th.

Our Carolina Panthers will kick off the holiday season at the inaugural Carolina Panthers tree lighting on November 26th. This free event will be at the Bank of America Stadium from 6-7pm. Food and festivities will also include a special visit from Sir Purr, TopCats, PurrCussion and the big guy himself, SANTA! The 35,00 lights illuminating the 51 foot Norway Spruce tree from Foscoe, North Carolina will bring a bright smile to all!

For the sports enthusiasts, the Charlotte Hornets will host games at the Time Warner Cable Arena on November 26th and November 28th  at 7:00pm.

Also at the Arena, on November 29th at 7:00pm and November 30th at 1:00pm, hockey will be sure to entertain fans when the Charlotte Checkers take to the ice against the Milwaukee Admirals.

Charlotte is a wonderful city thankful for its Southern charm, beautiful weather, thriving businesses and safe neighborhoods. Enjoy family and friends this Thanksgiving with Queen City entertainment, celebrations and safe travels!

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CHARLOTTE FARMS OPEN FOR FALL FAMILY FUN October 5, 2014

 

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Charlotte is considered a wonderfully entertaining metropolis and, yet, having fall fun in the country is often less than an hour away!

Families in the Queen City have their favorite pumpkin picking and apple picking farms and the top family choices are as consistent as Charlotte’s beautiful fall weather!

Hall Family Farm is right in Mecklenburg County, up the well-traveled Providence Road. The short drive taking you past all the lovely neighborhoods on the way is almost as enjoyable the farm itself! Families can tackle a 5-acre corn maze, pick a pumpkin, take a hayride and enjoy a bonfire. Kids can enjoy the free activities including a mini maze and race. Fall hours are September 29-November 8; Monday-Sunday 9am-6pm and Friday-Saturday 9am-6pm.

Carrigan Farms is just over 30 minutes from Charlotte, right outside Mooresville. This is a family owned farm with a genuine family atmosphere. Apples are still on the trees waiting to be picked and are available at the great rate of $6.50 per half-peck bag. Pumpkins are grown on the farm and families can pick them right off the vine! The pumpkin patch, tractor-drawn hayride takes the children and adults right to the pumpkins where $10 gives you the pumpkin of your choice!

Hodges Family Farm is not only a great time, but is also an agritourism sight hoping to educate families about farm animals and local farming. Hayrides will take you to pick out your own pumpkin, farm animals and pony rides. There is even a Hay Mountain! After Thanksgiving, Frazier Firs from the local mountain areas are available for your very own, personally chosen Christmas tree! For every real Christmas tree harvested, two-three seedlings are planted in its place. Buying a Christmas tree supports over 100,000 people employed in the industry.

The Hunter Farm provides a smaller experience, especially for those families with little ones. The farm is open to the public September 27th through November 16th. The ticket price includes a short hayride, choosing a small pumpkin and a visit to the petting barn. Bonfires and night rides are available with reservations. Located in Weddington, the Hall Family Farm is an easy, low-key adventure.

Wise Acres is an organic way to pick your pumpkin and have some fun! Pick your own pumpkin and enjoy the fall colors as you travel on the hay wagon through the local woods. Explore a mini sudangrass maze and play in the playground made of 100% recycled materials. Fresh air is free and fresh ingredients are for sale.

 The Regal Corn Maze in Statesville is a popular fall destination for those who like a challenge! Adventures include a corn maze, corn cannon, giant slingshot, seer head lassoing and a cow train and mini maze for the smaller set! Only about an hour from Charlotte, the Corn Maze is open every weekend in October.

The gates are flung open and inviting you to fall fun at Charlotte’s local farming communities! Fall colors, brisk air, pumpkins, hayrides, apples and mazes await!

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FANTASTIC FALL FOLIAGE UNFOLDS IN THE CAROLINAS October 5, 2013

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Fall in Charlotte is a beautiful time of year! The weather is perfect in the fall with sunny days and crisp air; people in the Queen City are enjoying parks, festivals and the fantastic display of trees. The famous tree-lined streets of Charlotte are awaiting the amazingly triumphant colors of fall in the Carolinas!

Right this instant, on October 4, in Charlotte, the weather is going to be in the high 80’s. Warm weather not ideal weather for fall colors to burst forth. We must be patient! According to the fall color forecast (yes, Charlotte has a forecast specifically for nature’s fall show) we will have to wait another week or two for our fall extravaganza.

The West is in the midst of a winter storm, there is a tropical storm that could unfortunately hit Florida and the Gulf Shores; and Charlotte, the Queen City, patiently awaits the end of a beautiful summer and the beginning of an equally lovely fall. We very rarely have to endure a complicated weather system. We are spoiled in our fair city, with gentle changes of seasons, but we do welcome all to come and enjoy the perfection!

Being so close to the mountains, Charlotteans plan quick trips to the many cities and towns nestled along the Blue Ridge Parkway during peak fall color times. The Parkway offers many overlooks and parking areas with spectacular views! Please note: due to the government shutdown, some parks destinations may be closed. Please go to www.blueridgeparkway.com for updates.

If driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway isn’t enough for fall fun, just two hours from Charlotte sits wonderful mountain towns awash in amazing fall foliage.  Asheville is a favorite spot for weekenders!

Asheville is a popular Carolina fall destination! Asheville offers all the mountain adventures of hiking, fishing, and camping. Campgrounds, like Asheville East KOA and Cabins are readily available for the outdoor adventurers. For those wanting more luxurious accommodations, the Inn on Biltmore Escape is a great choice. The famous, 100 year-old Grove Park Inn with its $50 million, 43,000 square foot subterranean spa might be the spot to admire the leaves, then relax in pampered bless before dining at one of seven restaurant experiences!

Chimney Rock and Grandfather Mountain are wonderful fall foliage enjoyment destinations for the more athletic fall adventurer seeking hikers and rock climbers. Mount Mitchell is the highest point in North Carolina at 6.684 feet and offers a breathtaking 360degree panoramic view. Only tent camping is allowed at Mt. Mitchell, but it is just 27 miles from Asheville accomodations.

Be patient Carolinians! Peak fall colors are expected to erupt in splendor in approximately one to two weeks! Whether strapping on the hiking gear or pulling on designer boots, North Carolina will wow you with fabulous fall foliage!

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CHARLOTTE CELEBRATES WITH FALL FESTIVALS September 7, 2013

 

 

Yiasou Greek Festival celebrates Greek heritage in Charlotte, NC

Charlotte is whispering fall with hints of yellow and red in the trees, a sprinkling of crisp mornings and FALL FESTIVALS popping up throughout the Carolinas!

Fall Festivals are a wonderful way to explore Charlotte’s International community! A fun Charlotte tradition for many families is to start the Fall Festival line up with the Yiasou Greek Festival!

The Yiasou (Hello and Goodbye in Greek) Greek Festival has been a cultural event in Charlotte since 1978. Yummy Greek cuisine and pastries are a tantalizing must-have at the festival! Start with a delicious plate of spanakopita, and do not leave without extra baklava for friends to enjoy later! Cultural exhibits, entertainment, shopping and wine tasting will transport to Greece without the cost of a plane ticket! The Greek Festival runs September 5-September 8.

The 19th Annual Festival of India will be held in Uptown Charlotte, September 14-15. The festival will have entertainment from classical Indian to modern Bollywood dance. Art, crafts and cuisine representing the various regions of India will intrigue visitors and satisfy palates! Children’s activities will be offered. Why not take home a bit of beautiful, exotic India with you by getting a henna tattoo!

Charlotte’s very own UNCC will host its annual International Festival on September 28. The festival will have representation of over 50 nations!  Each booth offers a wonderful adventure into foreign lands! Featuring arts, crafts, traditional dress and food from participating countries, the International Festival is an educational and fun way to explore other countries!

Celebrate Charlotte’s Latin American community by attending the Latin American Festival held in Southpark’s Symphony Park on October 13th! Mexican pop stars Julieta Venegas and Uruguayan rockers No Te Va Gustar will be performing! Tickle your taste buds with Latin American cuisine and enjoy folkloric dance performances. Local artisans and live visual art performances will be offered.

Charlotte celebrates its very passionate canine community of various heritages and backgrounds with a fall festival that Woofs It Up!

The 5th Annual Woofstock will be held on Saturday, September 14th at Amos’ Southend. Dane of Ruff Love, and Blue Ridge Boxer Rescue both team up for this doggie lovin event! Vendors, music, food, drink and an opportunity to bring home a new family member from the adoptable dogs is a great way for the family to celebrate all things canine!

The artistic community of Charlotte will once more be celebrated at Festival In The Park! Festival In The Park has been a Charlotte tradition for 49 years! The Festival will be held at beautiful Freedom Park’s scenic lake. There will be over 180 artists and crafts people at this years festival, all offering a story to go with that “couldn’t resist” beautiful piece of art! Carvers, potters, painters and sculptors offer their wares and often give demonstrations of how they created their art. Local schools have art exhibits celebrating student art. The band shell offers free entertainment, with over a thousand entertainers performing throughout the weekend! This is a great family festival with many children’s activities and food available for purchase. The Festival will be Friday, September 20- Sunday, September 21.

Chili is an American tradition with varying tales of origin.No matter where the chili pepper came from, chili is a tradition in the fall and expert chili chefs and tasters will enjoy the 4th Annual Dilworth/Southend Chili Cookoff on October 27! Bring the family to this chili festival and enjoy live music from local bands, raffle, games including a corn hole tournament, and , of course, CHILI! Local restaurants and local cooking teams will provide the delicious variety of chili. The tasting begins at 11:00! http://www.dsechilicookoff.com

Celebrate Queen City diversity, art and culture at one of the many family-friendly fall festivals offered in the Charlotte area!

 

 

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CHARLOTTE’S FUN FALL FAMILY FESTIVALS October 25, 2012

Charlotte’s kaleidoscope of fall foliage and crisp air is beckoning families to come out and play! People are out and about in Charlotte’s neighborhoods and parks chasing toddlers through piles of colorful leaves, jogging along tree-lined streets or simply walking arm-in-arm enjoying the splendors of autumn in Charlotte. Along with beautiful scenery and perfect fall weather, Charlotte also offers outdoor fall festivities and activities for all!

Anne Springs Close Greenway in Fort Mill, SC is offering wonderful outdoor activities Friday, Oct 19 7:00p to 10:00p. You can pick your own pumpkin, get lost in the corm maze, participate in archery and horseback Rides, or enjoy the many more family fun activities.www.greenwayfallfest.com

The Carolina Renaissance Festival  is an annual bawdy good time for all ages. It is a 16th century European-style art and entertainment event that features outdoor theater, circus entertainment, an arts and crafts marketplace, jousting tournaments, and of course, a feast fit for royalty (the turkey legs are a must-have)! The Carolina Renaissance Festival season opens this fall for seven festive weekends, Saturdays and Sundays, October 6th – November 18th.

FALL FUN FESTIVAL – PRESENTED BY CHARLOTTE SPEECH AND HEARING CENTER. 4th Annual Fun Fest is Saturday, Nov 3 12:00p to 4:00p at Park Road. Free hearing and fine/gross motor skills screenings available along with games, food and fun!  www.funfestcharlotte.com for details.

The Great Pumpkin Patch Party is for the kids! It will be at the Ivory Baker Recreation Center; 1920 Stroud Park Ct. in Charlotte, Tuesday, Oct. 30 from 10 to11:30am parkandrec.com
Aw Shucks Farm at 3718 Plyler Mill Road in Monroe has fall fun that includes a Corn Maze, hayrides, and a new Animal Barn Grain Bin Slide. www.awshucksfarm.com

The Amazing Maize Maze at Rural Hill Farm in Huntersville returns for another fall season just in time to get you completely lost in a giant field of corn. Flashlight mazes every Friday evening at dusk through early November.      www.ruralhill.net/amazingmaizemaze.asp

18th Annual St. Stephen Fall Craft Festival at 6800 Sardis Rd. in Charlotte returns Saturday, Nov 3 from 9:00a to 2:00p. It will include 50+ vendors from Charlotte & surrounding areas and yummy Southern BBQ–eat in or take out. www.ststephenumc.net/UMW/umw_fallfestival.html

Autumn is calling you to come out and play in Charlotte!

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CHARLOTTE FALLS INTO BRILLIANT COLOR October 11, 2012

Autumn is a visual feast for North Carolinians! In North Carolina, you’ll find vibrant autumn color from the first weeks of October through early November. Our brilliant annual show of bright reds, vivid oranges and deep golds meanders its way down to Charlotte, starting at higher elevations such as Mount Mitchell and Grandfather Mountain and slowly ripples down through mountains, foothills and Piedmont in the weeks that follow.

 North Carolina’s earliest and most vibrant fall foliage occurs in the beautiful mountains, located in the western part of the state, with leaf admirers enjoying spectacular fall color a little later in the season in many areas of the North Carolina Piedmont, including Charlotte.

Newcomers to Charlotte are often heard saying “It is so green”! Our beautiful green trees that give us such a spectacular show in the fall are no mistake. The City of Charlotte Tree Ordinance Originally adopted in 1978, protects trees in the public right of way, and those on private property as they relate to development. The Ordinance also requires tree planting with new construction. Charlotte takes great pride in maintaining its beauty by adhering to environmental regulations and preserving aesthetic standards!

The neighborhoods in Charlotte, whether the newer Ballantyne area or in the older, more historic sections of the city, are all breathtaking in the fall! Take the time this fall to drive or take a stroll down some of Charlotte’s most beautiful tree lined streets. Just taking a quick trip to the neighborhood grocery store down Ballantyne Commons Parkway in South Charlotte can be a delightful diversion when you are surrounded by the amazing kaleidoscope of trees along the way. Myers Park neighborhood is popular for its canopy of majestic oak trees and elegant homes. Dilworth is also one of Charlotte’s most picturesque neighborhoods. Throughout Dilworth you will find families enjoying the convenience of long sidewalks and front porches to admire the wonderful view of their colorful yards.

Enjoy the feel of crisp fall weather in Charlotte! You just need to roll the car windows, take a stroll or eat outside to admire the wondrous sight of brilliant color slowly unfolding as Charlotte welcomes the fall season!

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BRIGHT ORANGE PUMPKINS AND CORN MAZES ANNOUNCE AUTUMN IN CHARLOTTE October 7, 2012

       

Bright orange pumpkins are beckoning to be taken home for decoration, jack o lanterns and tasty treats. Corn mazes are waiting to challenge families and friends, and wagons are hitched to the horses for hay rides.  It is another beautiful fall in Charlotte, N.C.!

Family fun abounds in Charlotte during the fall months! Hunting for that perfect pumpkin is an annual tradition for a lot of families in the weeks before Halloween. Hall Family Farm features pumpkin picking with a musical hay ride, http://www.hallfamilyfarm.com. The farm is in the Ballantyne Area, at the intersection of Johnston Rd and Providence Rd West.  Hodges Farm on Rocky River Road has over 10 Acres of Pumpkins!  Hodges also offers hayrides, Hay Mountain, farm animals, and pony rides only on Saturday and Sunday, http://www.hodgesfarmnc.com.  Carrigan Farms is offering weekend Pumpkin Hayride Tours to the public. Hours of operation are Saturday & Sunday, from 9 AM to 4 PM (SHARP), with hayrides leaving out about every 15 minutes, http://www.carriganfarms.com. Guests enjoy a hayride to visit farm animals and to the patch to pick a pumpkin. Don’t forget all the local roadside pumpkin patches! One of the most popular roadside pumpkins is outside Carmel Commons shopping center on Pineville-Matthews Road and Carmel Road.

Did You Know?
That Jack O Lantern is a nutritious way to celebrate the fall season! Originating in Central America, pumpkins are fruits – a type of squash in the family of cucumbers, squashes and melons.  They are 90% water and are great for much more than carving! For delicious and nutritious recipes go to http://tarheeltastebud.blogspot.com/2012/09/my-pumpkin-bucket-list.html.

Corn Mazes are an exciting adventure for all family members! The Amazing Maize Maze at Rural Hill located in Huntersville, N.C. is a favorite family challenge. Get lost in the giant seven acre corn maze featuring over two miles of interconnecting paths, http://www.ruralhill.net. One of the largest in the Southeast, the maze is sure to please! Looking for an even bigger challenge? Do the maze in the dark during one of the Family Friendly Friday or Saturday Night Mazes! Bring your own flashlight.  With a new design each year, the maze at Aw Shucks® at 3718 Plyler Mill Rd., in Monroe, NC is a popular attraction. The maze claims to never be overwhelming and even young kids do well,awshycksfarms.com/maze. Most visitors take 25 minutes to emerge from the corn! Be sure to bring a flashlight for the maze at NIGHT!  Hall Family Farm boasts a new 5 acre corn maze and Hodges Farm also offers corn maize fun to go along with your pumpkin picking and hay rides.

Whether choosing the perfect pumpkin, getting lost in a corn maze, or taking an evening stroll, fall is the perfect time to enjoy beautiful Charlotte, N.C.!