Admire local creativity during Yard Art Day.

Admire local creativity during Yard Art Day.

Editor’s note: CharlotteFive has limited coverage of in-person, indoor events to help prevent community spread of COVID-19. Masks are now required in Charlotte and many venues for indoor spaces or close settings.


Celebrate the return to school with a “Back to Hogwarts” celebration from The Wandering Cup. The coffee shop’s “potion masters” have been mixing up drinks so you can go from Charlotte to Platform 9 ¾ with every sip. Expect a handful of selections, including “Butterbeer Bombardo” (Madam Rosemerta’s original recipe with espresso), “Polyjuice Potion” (matcha frappe with white chocolate) and “The Fizzing Whizbee” (Orchard peach iced tea with strawberry). Drinks will be available from Sept. 1-19 in Belmont. 900 S. Fork Village Drive, G2.

Get your doughnut fix at Reigning Doughnuts. After a brief closure due to a broken motor on the doughnut machine, the shop is back open for regular hours. And while your doughnut will already taste delicious, the fact that owners Jamie Brown and Jeff Tonidandel paid employees based on their average work weeks during the closure makes each bite a bit sweeter. 3120 N. Davidson St., Suite 100.

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After a brief closure due to a broken machine part, Reigning Doughnuts reopened on Aug. 31. Jamie Brown


Celebrate Labor Day weekend at the Hops and Hogs Festival. During the two-day event, guests can enjoy local craft beer and barbecue, including a BBQ Competition Sanction hosted by The Kansas City Barbecue Society. Expect live music from big-name performers, such as Sister Hazel, Lifehouse, Buckcherry, Saving Abel and more. This event is available to all ages and will go on rain or shine. Sept. 4-5. $35+. 2500 E. Independence Blvd.

Attend the inaugural Carolina Haitian Food Festival. Designed to create high-quality events and programs for the Haitian community in the Carolinas, the festival will celebrate the region’s Haitain cuisine, music and businesses. Expect homemade food, live performances, vendors and kids’ activities. $7 ages 6-12, $15+ adults. International House, 1817 Central Ave.


Head to I-277 for Around the Crown 10K, presented by Truist. Though COVID-19 changed last year’s plans, the event is back this year to lead racers through uptown Charlotte and over I-277. Take in the skyline, get your sweat on and enjoy live music during the post-race celebration. If you prefer to run from the comfort of your home or neighborhood, there’s a virtual option, as well. 8 a.m. $40 virtual, $50 in-person. Race begins at First Ward Park, 301 E. 7th St.

Support local at Front Porch Sundays. Located in the parking lot of Sycamore Brewing, this open-air market hosts about 70 local businesses on each first Sunday of the month from April through December. In addition to shopping, you can enjoy a bite from a food truck or listen to live music. If you prefer to shop local from home, Front Porch Sundays also offers Market in a Box, featuring themed gifts from local makers. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. 2161 Hawkins St.


Pair cocktails with barbecue at the Billy BBQ event at Billy Sunday. Spend the day on the patio, complete with cocktail specials, snacks for purchase and games. While there, consider trying one of the new cocktail specials, including “Movin’ to the Country,” “Can We Still Be Friends” and “One Trick Pony.” Noon-6 p.m. Free. 1115 N. Brevard St.

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Celebrate Labor Day with barbecue and cocktails at Billy Sunday on Labor Day. Courtesy of Billy Sunday

Celebrate creativity at Yard Art Day. This annual event will return for its ninth year, where participants make and display art in their front yards. Art can be viewed by walking around outdoors or via car, so you can engage in social distancing while still admiring local works. Check out the map to find art near you. Free. Various locations.


Enjoy an evening of laughter at the Queen City Comedy Experience. This comedy festival will highlight national acts including Nikki Glaser, Steve-O, Nurse Blake and Jon Reep, as well as Charlotte-based Tara Brown, Don Garrett, Johnny Millwater, Now Are The Foxes and Improv Charlotte. Throughout the festival, Spirit Square will host comedy acts, stand-up shows, dance and music groups, improv teams, live podcast tapings and more. Sept. 7-12. $10+. Multiple locations uptown.

Check out artwork in progress in MoRA. Patchwork Crosswalks, an art initiative to decorate the Monroe Road Area community, is being developed in partnership with ArtWalks CLT. Led by Charlotte mixed media artists MyLoan Dinh and Bunny Gregory, the project will eventually become part of the East Side Art Trail. Multiple locations.

Look for sidewalk artwork in MoRa as part of Patchwork Crosswalks. Courtesy of MoRA


Get tickets to see “WICKED.” The Broadway musical will make its way back to the Queen City from Sept. 8 to Oct. 3 at Ovens Auditorium. Expect to see what happened in the Land of Oz through the lens of the Oz witches. Tickets are available on the Blumenthal Performing Arts website. $39+. 2700 E. Independence Blvd.

Visit an old favorite. Several of Charlotte’s popular restaurants opened in the 1980s and are still serving food today. From the Fourth Ward Stroganoff at Alexander Michael’s to the New Orleans BBQ Shrimp at Cajun Queen, these spots have perfected comfort food that lasted through years of changes and trends.

Dine at one of twelve Charlotte restaurants that opened in the 1980s, such as Alexander Michael’s in uptown’s Fourth Ward. Alex Cason


Try a new hiking spot. Though Crowders and Kings Mountain are known as the go-to spots to hike, there are more hidden gems to be discovered within 90 minutes of the city. Check out waterfalls and granitic flatrocks at Forty Acre Rock Trail, catch the leaves changing color on the Fall Mountain Trail at Morrow Mountain State Park or pick from a variety of trails to reach a summit at Rocky Face Mountain.

Hike to incredible views at Morrow Mountain State Park. Courtesy of North Carolina State Parks

Get to know Charlotte’s Black food bloggers. These bloggers break the mold by sharing photos and information about places that normally fly under the radar. Shionda (Shay) Farrell specializes in finding hidden gems and hangout spots. Ryan Jones is all about the vibe. And Cory Wilkins knows where to get all the specials. Check out these bloggers and more.

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Learn where to find the best eats, such as this taco tray, from Charlotte’s Black food bloggers. Courtesy of Asha Ellison

Mark your calendar

Catch Opera Carolina’s “I Dream” performance at Belk Theater. Composer Douglas Tappin blends jazz, contemporary, classical and Broadway music styles to renew Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s message and vision for the future through a powerful performance. Sept. 16-19. Times vary. $22+. 130 N. Tryon St.

Explore yoga during Flow Fest at the Whitewater Center. Designed to encourage mindfulness and wellness in a natural, outdoor setting, Flow Fest will feature a variety of yoga practices and events. Offerings include yoga practices, SUP yoga, workshops, meditations, a vendor village and kombucha sampling. Registration is required. Sept. 18. Begins at 8:30 a.m. Free.

Celebrate during the Latin American Festival at Symphony Park. Presented by the Latin American Coalition, the event will include a concert, cultural festival, live performances, visual artists, authentic food and handmade crafts. Sept. 18-19. $20 concert. Festival admission is free. 4400 Sharon Road.

Virtually attend the Mad About Modern Midcentury Modern Home Tour presented by the Charlotte Museum of History. For the second year, the tour will be held online. Ticket holders can expect exclusive access to 360-degree tours of five featured homes and a digital guidebook. Houses included in the tour showcase open floor plans, expansive windows and asymmetrical exteriors typical of midcentury modern design. An in-person kickoff event will be held, as well, but requires a separate ticket. Sept. 23 (access to online event through Oct. 22). 6 p.m. $25+.

A low pitched roof with overhanging eaves efficiently shades the large windows of this home on the Catawba River, designed by notable local architect Murray Whisnant.jpg
Get tickets for the virtual Mad About Modern home tour. Dustin Shores/The Digital Lasagna Team

Get fresh air and admire art at Festival in the Park. From Sept. 24-26, Freedom Park will host artists, vendors, musicians and more to bring the park to life. Expect live music, exciting eats and family fun zones. COVID-19 safety precautions include more spacing between vendors, signs encouraging masks and handwashing, sanitizing stations and crowd density monitoring. 4-9 p.m. Sept. 24, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sept. 25, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sept. 26. Free. 1409 East Blvd.

Learn professional skills with NetworkQueen. Founded by WCCD-TV reporter and anchor Alexandra Elich, NetworkQueen is a professional networking group designed to help women learn to negotiate, make connections and seek professional advancement. Ticket proceeds will benefit Safe Alliance, which provides resources to people impacted by sexual assault and domestic violence. The first event will take place on Sept. 26 at Hattie’s Tap & Tavern. 5-7 p.m. $20. 2918 The Plaza.

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Jessica is a writer fueled by coffee, cookies and long walks in the Magic Kingdom. She’s often found exploring the culinary scene (mostly pasta) and traveling. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @jessicaswannie.