Happenings: Calendar of events


November 1, 2021

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden

Check out our calendar of things to do. For more ideas, including shows and special performances, browse our fall arts preview.


Wednesday Night Live
Wednesdays from 5-9 p.m.
The Mint Museum, The Bechtler Museum of Modern Art, The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture and the Knight Theater are partnering in this new weekly event series featuring free admission and live entertainment. Visit mintmuseum.org for the programming schedule and updates.

Ice Skating at the Whitewater Center
thru mid-February
Skaters of all ages and experience levels can take to the ice again this year at the Whitewater Center’s newly expanded, 24,000-square-foot pond with four distinct skating areas, includiing a new ice trail in the upper pond. Enjoy hot or cold beverages from the on-ice Airstream. Admission is $25 or included with an all-access day pass or annual pass. whitewater.org

us national whitewater center
Ice skating at the Whitewater Center | photo by Jamey Price courtesy USNWC

VTGCLT (Vintage Charlotte) pop up market at Metropolitan
through Dec. 22
Plus: Shop the 10th annual Winter Market at the Fillmore on Sunday, Nov. 21, with more than 60 vintage and handmade vendors. Get more details @vtgclct

Speedway Christmas at Charlotte Motor Speedway
Nov. 19-Jan. 16
Cruise through a dazzling 4-mile course with hundreds of creative holiday displays. LED lights twinkle to Christmas-themed music for the ultimate spectacle the whole family will enjoy. Tickets start at $30 for a vehicle pass (maximum of 15 people per vehicle). charlottemotorspeedway.com

Mingle at The Mint
Dec. 2
Join SouthPark for this exclusive holiday shopping event with more than 30 local vendors and artisans. Win a trip to Chetola Resort, a package to Ziba Luxury Salon & Spa, or tickets to a Blumenthal performance. Sip on drinks and enjoy appetizers from Reid’s Fine Foods. Buy tickets: southpark.com/mingle-mint

Charlotte Christmas Village
Nov. 26-Dec. 23
The annual holiday market returns to Truist Field in uptown for a second year, featuring Light the Knights, shopping and European fare from schnitzels and strudels to cider and Gluhwein. Ticket prices vary. cltchristmasvillage.com

Holidays at the Garden at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
Nov. 26 – Jan. 2
Stoke your holiday cheer with a stroll among the twinkling cherry trees and a roasted marshmallow beside a roaring fire. Food trucks will be onsite for a quick bite, and sing along to holiday favorites at the festive topiary display. Tickets start at $14.95 for adults; children under 2 are free. dsbg.org

Sippin’ Santa popup at The Royal Tot
Through Dec. 31 Throughout the season, one of Plaza Midwood’s newest bars hosts a festive holiday popup with tropical cocktails like the Yule Log Grog – gin, falernum, cranberry syrup, ginger liqueur and lime — and the Christmas Eve of Destruction — rum, nutmeg syrup, herbal liqueur, lime and aromatic bitters. Also enjoy a limited menu of small bites and mains from Paper Plane Deli. Reservations at theroyaltot.com

Christmas at the Library at the Billy Graham Library
Nov. 29- Dec. 23
Little ones will enjoy the story time on the heated patio and singing along with the Christmas carolers. A live nativity will be on display, and the carriage ride offers a magical view of the library grounds. Reservations are required but admission to the library is free; carriage ride tickets are $8 for adults and $4 for children. billygrahamlibrary.org

Fourth Ward Holiday Sip & Stroll presented by the Friends of Fourth Ward
Dec. 2-4, 5-9 p.m.
The self-guided porch-crawl-style tour offers outdoor views of Victorian-era homes trimmed to the nines. Enjoy food and beverage tastings, live music and carriage rides. Tickets start at $30. fourthwardclt.org

fourth ward sip and stroll
Fourth Ward Sip & Stroll  | Photo courtesy Friends of Fourth Ward

Weihnachtsmarkt (Christmas Market) at The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery
Dec. 3-5, 10-12, 17-19
The brewery’s famous biergarten transforms into a German-style Christmas village, complete with lights, music, shopping and Gluhwein (spiced wine). You can also enjoy seasonal favorites like Yule Bock and Dunkel by the cozy fire pits. Free to attend. oldemeckbrew.com

The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical at Ovens Auditorium
Dec. 3
A holiday tradition comes alive in this musical production that transports you straight to the North Pole. Dance along with Santa’s Scout Elves to musical scores that will unite the whole family in the joy of the season. Tickets start at $34.75. boplex.com

Charlotte Ballet Presents Nutcracker at Belk Theater
Dec. 3-23
The magic returns as visions of sugar plums pirouette to Tchaikovsky’s treasured score performed by the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra. Tickets start at $25. blumenthalarts.org

Mistletoe Market at Camp North End
Dec. 4, 11 and 18, 4-8 p.m.
Join more than 25 local and regional vendors along with Camp North End’s 20+ shops, restaurants and galleries for this festive event. Expect an outdoor biergarten, and indoor lounge with movie screenings, live music and more. Each evening will feature a special pop-up event, including the Reindog Parade on Dec. 4. Also at CNE, the Immersive Van Gogh experience has been extended through Jan. 2. camp.nc

camp north end mistletoe market
Reindog Parade at the Mistletoe Market at Camp North End | photo by Christina Gregor

The Velveteen Rabbit
Dec. 4-19
The Children’s Theatre of Charlotte brings to life this classic story of unconditional love based on the book by Margery Williams. Ticket prices vary. ctcharlotte.org

Jim Brickman: The Gift of Christmas
Dec. 6
The Grammy-nominated songwriter and pianist returns to Knight Theater, a stop on his annual holiday tour. Tickets start at $25. blumenthalarts.org

Robert Earl Keen’s Christmas Show
Dec. 7
Slightly irreverent, definitely amusing — sing along with the Americana icon and his band of musicians at Keen’s annual holiday concert when the tour stops at Knight Theater. Tickets start at $32.50. blumenthalarts.org

“Gather and Give” luncheon hosted by Good Friends Charlotte
Dec. 9
The women’s nonprofit organization is celebrating its 35th year with an annual end-of-year giving luncheon at the Charlotte Convention Center, with a simultaneous virtual event. Funds raised from the event help to support causes such as food security, infant safety and youth education. Attendance is free, with the opportunity to make a financial contribution. goodfriendscharlotte.org

Jazz Room Holiday Edition: Preservation Hall All-Star Christmas at Booth Playhouse
Dec. 9-10
The annual performance by the world-renowned Preservation Hall All-Stars is back. Swing along to holiday favorites with a NOLA twist. The festivities include a pre-concert reception and silent auction supporting the JazzArts Academy. Tickets are $28. blumenthalarts.org

The Magic of Christmas at Knight Theater
Dec. 10-19
Join the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra in this annual performance featuring sing-a-longs, falling snow and vocalist Tony DeSare. Ticket prices vary. charlottesymphony.org

Mark O’Connor’s An Appalachian Christmas
Dec. 16
The Grammy-winning composer and fiddler stops at Knight Theater in a show that features new takes on Christmas classics in a style that mixes bluegrass with other musical genres. Tickets start at $22.50. blumenthalarts.org

Tosco Music Holiday Party
Dec. 20, 7:30 p.m.
Enjoy holiday classics and traditional carols (and singalongs) performed by more than a dozen artists in a variety of musical genres. At Knight Theater. Tickets start at $18.50. toscomusic.org

The Hip Hop Nutcracker at Knight Theater
Dec. 27-28
This brilliant mashup is a contemporary treat. Travel through time and tradition as Maria-Clara and her prince, Myron, meet up with a gang of street dancers in “The Land of Sweets” — a nightclub trapped in the year 1985. The production features hip-hop interludes reimagined  by  DJ  Boo and an on-stage electric violinist. Tickets start at $19.99. blumenthalarts.org

Cirque de Noel at Knight Theater
Dec. 29-30
Enjoy holiday favorites performed by Charlotte Symphony Orchestra combined with amazing acrobatics. Tickets prices vary. charlottesymphony.org

Isaac Julien: Lina Bo Bardi — A  Marvellous  Entanglement at Bechtler Museum of Modern Art


American Abstraction at Jerald Melberg Gallery
Through Jan. 1
An homage to the style that emerged in New York City during the mid-20th century, this exhibit features artists who were original members of the Abstract Expressionist movement or who have carried its legacy to new generations. 625 South Sharon Amity Rd.; jeraldmelberg.com

The Space Between at SOZO Gallery
Through Dec. 4
A reflection on what it means to exist physically, spiritually and mentally in our world today, this group exhibit features works by five contemporary artists. Explore themes of space in various contexts — holding space, sacred space and, appropriately, the spaces in-between. 904 Pecan Ave. Unit 101, sozogallery.net

John Leslie Breck: American Impressionist at Mint Museum Uptown
Through Jan. 2
More than 70 of Breck’s paintings are on view in the first museum exhibition dedicated to his work since his death in 1899. The show ranges from Breck’s early work in Giverny, France, to his American landscapes depicting scenes from Massachusetts, Maine and California. 500 S. Tryon St., mintmuseum.org

john leslie breck
The Bay at Venice by John Leslie Breck

and then it wasn’t: Damian Stamer at SOCO Gallery
Nov. 10-Dec. 22
Durham native Damian Stamer finds beauty in forgotten places. Stamer’s works blend realism with abstraction in his third solo exhibition at SOCO Gallery. socogallery.com

In process: Matthew Steele at Hodges Taylor Gallery
Through Dec. 17
A solo exhibition of works by Charlotte-based Matthew Steele features the artist’s pieced-walnut sculptures and works on paper. Meet the artist at an opening reception Oct. 1 from 6-8 p.m. 1414 S. Tryon St., Suite 130; hodgestaylor.com

Signs of Home at Charlotte Museum of History
Opens Oct. 16
Guest curated by Christopher S. Lawing, this exhibition tells the story of Charlotte through the unique signs of businesses, neighborhoods and institutions that defined it. Museum admission is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors, children 6-17 and students. 3500 Shamrock Dr.; charlottemuseum.org

Visual Vanguard at Harvey B. Gantt Center
through Jan. 17
Guest curators David Wilson and Stephen Hayes Jr. assembled works by 26 artists that “surveys the struggles, strengths and celebrations of Black creativity in the Carolinas.” 551 S. Tryon St. ganttcenter.org  

JOY at Elder Gallery
opens Sept. 25
Featuring works by Erin Comerford Miller, Carla Aaron-Lopez, Windy O’Connor and Lo’Vonia Parks, this exhibit unveils how innate joy fuels the artists’ individual works and delves into the transformative power of women coming together. Opening reception is noon-5 p.m. Sept. 25; reservations required. 1520 S. Tryon St. eldergalleryclt.com

Container/Contained: Phil Freelon – Design Strategies for Telling African-American Stories at Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts+Culture
through Jan. 17
Honor the works of North Carolina architect Phil Freelon (1953-2019) and delve into the narrative of African American culture within the spaces he designed. Freelon’s work includes the Gantt Center, as well as leading the design team for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. 551 S. Tryon St.; ganttcenter.org 

Isaac Julien: Lina Bo Bardi — A  Marvellous  Entanglement at Bechtler Museum of Modern Art
through Feb. 27
This nine-screen film installation by artist and filmmaker Isaac Julien reflects on legendary Italian-Brazilian architect Lina Bo Bardi and her Brazilian projects from the 1960s to the 1980s. 420 South Tryon St.; bechtler.org

The World of Anna Sui at Mint Museum Randolph
Nov. 20-May 1
A tribute to the designer’s timeless yet contemporary looks, this exhibit offers a unique look into the creative influences and processes that make Anna Sui a true style icon. 2730 Randolph Rd.; mintmuseum.org

— compiled by SouthPark magazine staff and Amanda Lea 

Featured image: Holidays at the Garden at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden

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