Warm and sunny days are right around the corner. Welcome to spring.
As the vaccine becomes more widely available, and you feel comfortable venturing out more, here are 29 must-do events and activities this spring in Charlotte.
(1) Grab a rooftop drink and take in Queen City views
Cloud Bar by David Burke: Located on the roof of the Le Méridien hotel, Cloud Bar has 360 views of Uptown and features Charlotte-themed craft cocktails like “Queen City” and “Uptown Girl.”
Nuvole Rooftop TwentyTwo: Nuvole is currently hosting a 90s themed brunch with Sunny D mimosas and donut charcuterie boards every Saturday.
Pins Mechanical: The sprawling 23,000-square-foot facility has a rooftop bar with 24 taps and skyline views, four fire pits, and a stacked lineup of patio games, retro arcades, and duckpin bowling. Full guide here.
Charlotte Beer Garden: In total, CBG has 16,663-square-feet over three floors and 436 taps. The greenhouse-style, partially covered rooftop bar with 24 taps will be the main attraction this spring. It’s got picnic table seating and will be dripping in plants, shrubs, and vines. Look for CBG to add fire pits, lawn games like cornhole, and possibly even some ax-throwing lanes. The rooftop is available for private parties.
(2) Spend the day walking, eating and drinking along the Rail Trail
Bonus stop: Around the corner from Jeni’s Ice Cream, snap a pic in front of Evelyn Henson’s Confetti Hearts Wall.
(3) Cheer for the Hornets
Through May 16
Details: Fans are now allowed to attend Hornets games in person. The team, which currently has a winning record (!!), plays until at least May 16.
Cost: $15+. Tickets are available here.
(4) Tee it up at Bank of America Stadium with TopGolf
Details: TopGolf is hosting a special event from March 25-28 where you hit golf balls onto the stadium, just like you would at TopGolf facilities.
Cost: $40+. Tickets available here.
More golf guides:
(5) Participate in The Whole Enchilada mountain bike race at the Whitewater Center. (Or just watch)
Details: Riders can choose between The Whole Enchilada (~50 miles) and The Half Enchilada (~25 miles). The race will take place on March 27 from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm at the USNWC. The last day to pre-register is March 25.
Cost: $50 – The Whole Enchilada, $40 – The Half Enchilada
[Related guide: First time to the Whitewater Center? Here’s what you need to know]
(6) Enjoy a Charlotte Symphony concert virtually or at a brewery
Classical Series: This virtual concert series will consist of three performances streamed directly from Blumenthal Performing Arts Center venues.
Dates: March 27, May 8 & 22.
On Tap: Concerts in this series will be held outdoors at NoDa Brewing Company and, for the first time, Cabarrus Brewing Company.
Dates: March 23; April 6, 13, & 20; May 4, 18, & 25.
(7) Go for a ride at Rock Hill’s BMX Supercross Track
Where: 1307 Riverwalk Parkway, Rock Hill, SC
- Beginners can take the New Rider Orientation (Free)
- There’s a Novice clinic for the next step up ($10)
- For those with a little more experience, take the Intermediate clinic ($10)
- Open practice (balance bikes only) is every Thursday from 4-6 p.m. ($5)
Rentals: Rent a BMX bike and helmet for $10 or a balance bike and helmet for $5.
See a race: The USA BMX Carolina Nationals and USA Cycling Elite National Championships are happening March 26-28. Free admission.
(8) Participate in some fun Easter activities
- Sweet Spot Studio is hosting an Easter Block Party on April 3 complete with a Sweet Spot Kitchen Bake Sale (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.), chocolate-dipped strawberry class, merch sale, and coffee from Coordinates Coffee.
- Steak 48 announced it will have expanded hours for Easter brunch.
- The Ballantyne Hotel has several activities planned for the days leading up to Easter including a spring-themed family movie night, Easter egg-shaped cookie decorating, and Easter brunch.
(9) Go roller skating at Screamin Wheels and Blades pop-up roller skating rink
What: Screamin Wheels and Blades is Charlotte’s first outdoor pop-up roller rink and it’s coming to University City on April 10.
Details: The first event will be held outside Armored Cow Brewery in the University area on skate-friendly flooring that’s put together like a big puzzle. In addition to skating, the event will include food trucks and a live DJ.
There are three skating sessions — the second and third sessions are sold out, but you can add your name to a waitlist if spots become available. Tickets are $20 if you bring your own skates, and $25 if you need to rent skates.
- Session 1: 2-3:30 p.m., all ages welcome
- Session 2: 3:30-5 p.m., all ages welcome (sold out)
- Session 3: 6-9 p.m., 18 and up (sold out)
[Read more: Pop-up roller skating rink to launch next month]
(10) Sample wines during Charlotte Wine + Food Week
Details: The annual event adjusted its format this year, holding off on a grand tasting event until this fall, but continuing on with its smaller scale tastings and dinners.
Cost: Dinners start at $150 per person. Tickets here.
(11) Try a variety of spiked seltzers at Seltzerland
What: Seltzerland, a nationally-touring hard seltzer festival, is coming to Charlotte for the first time this year.
Details: The festival will take place at Paradise Valley Golf Club (110 Barton Creek Dr) on Saturday, April 17. Brands participating include White Claw, Bud Light Seltzer, Natural Light Seltzer and Bravazzi among others. Tickets start at $29 and can be purchased here.
[Related read: 8 Charlotte spots with craft spiked seltzer *and* great patios]
(12) Support women-owned businesses at the Girl Tribe Pop-Up
What: The season’s best excuse to shop (as if you need one, really). Support women-owned businesses, including boutiques, beauty brands, jewelers, and artists. Plus, you can expect cocktails and photo ops.
Details: The pop-up is on April 24 & 25 from 10 am to 5 pm at Charlotte Convention Center. $5 GA, $25 VIP. Buy here.
(13) Stay in a treehouse with friends at Treehouse Vineyards
- ‘Date Nite’ Treehouse accommodates up to six people. Reserve during the day for $25/hour
- ‘Horsefeathers Hideaway’ treehouse holds up to eight people. Starting from $175/night
- ‘Papa’s Dream’ treehouse is available for overnight stays only. Starting from $125/night
Taste + tour: Due to Covid-19, wine tastings and tours are temporarily on hold.
(14) Climb the summit of Crowder’s Mountain for an insta-worthy pic
Trails: Take Crowder’s Trail for a more moderate climb. Go with Rocktop Trail for a more strenuous hike and views along the way. If you want a shorter climb to the summit, hit up Backside Trail. It’s steep but it’ll get you to the top quicker.
Keep in mind: Trails are accessible from 8 am to 8 pm during March and April and from 8 am to 9 pm from May to September. The trails are always less crowded earlier in the day.
Après hike: Veronét Vineyards is a 12-minute drive from Crowder’s, so go for a post-hike drink and snack.
(15) Take a day trip, or do a weekend away
Durham: Durham is one of those cities that sneaks up on you. And by that, I mean it has everything you didn’t know you needed. It’s quaint but there’s still plenty to do. Here’s our travel guide with 33 things to do in the Bull City.
Belmont: Only 15 miles from Charlotte, there’s so much to love about Belmont. It offers a drastic change of pace without having to stray too far from home. See our full guide for 20 things to see, do, and eat in Belmont.
Blowing Rock: Go if you want a leisurely day of hiking, shopping, and snacking. The drive is 2 hours, but it’s easy enough to do as a day trip. Here are 20 things to see, do, and eat in Blowing Rock.
(16) Get your adrenaline pumping on a mountain bike trail ride
Trails listed by difficulty
- Moderate: 7 Oaks Preserve Trail, 6500 South New Hope Road, Belmont
- Intermediate: Itusi Trail, 759 State Park Road, Troutman
- Hard: Back Yard Trail, 5539 Farmbrook Drive
Pro tip: Check out the Tarheel Trailblazers website ahead of time for trail conditions.
(17) Overlook Lake Norman on the patio of Hello, Sailor
What to eat: Share the hushpuppies ($3.99), oysters (market price), Florida blue crab claws ($13.49), Carolina shrimp calabash plate ($15.99) and lobster roll served on milk bread ($29.99).
What to drink: A Cherry Lemon Sundrop Negroni Slushie ($8) or a Subterranean Spritz — vodka, smoked pineapple, falernum, agave, key lime and lime La Croix ($10).
(18) View waterfalls on this DuPont State Recreation Forest hike
Stats: 10,400 acres of forest. 86 miles of trail. 4 waterfalls. 2 hours from Charlotte.
The waterfall hike: The 3-mile waterfall hike will take you to Hooker Falls, Triple Falls, and High Falls. It’s a laid-back hike that will still give you a lot of bang for your buck.
Fun fact: Scenes from “The Hunger Games” were filmed at the waterfalls in DuPont.
(19) Go glamping and sleep comfortably under the stars
Glamping explained: It’s basically camping with a little more luxury than your traditional tent and sleeping bag set-up. Get all of the details on the experience here.
Places to stay
- Sleep in a geodesic dome at Asheville Glamping, starting at $145/night (Related guide)
- Spend the night in the Serenity Yurt, starting at $120/night
- Relax in a solar-powered luxury tipi in Boone, starting at $141/night
Related guide: 7 glamping getaways in the Blue Ridge Mountains
(20) Drink a margarita on RuRu’s patio — or grab a takeout marg to go
- ‘Friend Zone’ House margarita – house tequila, agave, lime juice, orange juice, salted rim ($9)
- ‘You Talking To Me’ House infused jalapeno tequila, agave, lime juice, salted rim ($9.75)
- ‘Mortimer Duke’ Herradura Resposado, agave, lime juice, Cointreau ($13)
Food to order: Start with the ‘I am McLovin’ queso blanco and chips ($6.95) and a round of tacos. The ‘Stage Five Clinger’ has crispy chicken, lettuce, spicy corn relish, pickled jalapeños, chipotle aioli ($3.95) or go with a ‘Long Duck Dong’ with Korean-style sweet & spicy steak, pickled cabbage, sesame seeds, cilantro ($4.29)
Specials: On Mondays, you can get $5 ‘Friend Zone’ and ‘Magic Mike’ margaritas. Go on Tuesdays for $2 select tacos of the day.
(21) Shoot sporting clays at The Fork
Location: The Fork Farm and Stables, 3200 Fork Road, Norwood
The courses: Set on 1,600 acres at the Pee Dee and Rocky Rivers, The Fork has two 14 station wooded and field courses, one 7-station small gauge course, a covered five-stand, and a four-person, eight-trap, 65-foot tower/flurry.
Cost: Gun rentals are $35 for the day and targets start at $12.50.
(22) Whip up a mint julep at home and watch this year’s Queen’s Cup Steeplechase virtually
The event: While the pomp and pageantry of the Queen’s Cup Steeplechase are on hold this year, you can still tune in virtually to watch some of the most athletic thoroughbred horses race at speeds of up to 30 mph.
Details: The race will be live-streamed Saturday, April 24 from Mineral Springs.
(23) Spot your favorite golfers tee off at the Wells Fargo Championship
What to expect: Big names in golf battling it out at Quail Hollow Club. Cold drinks. Good food. The best people-watching of the year. And an overall chill day on the course.
Tickets: Ticket information hasn’t been released yet, but more information can be found here.
Related guide: 10 best country clubs in Charlotte and pricing data on each
(24) Catch a Knights game at Truist Field
When: The season opener is May 8 and games will run through mid-September (about 61 home games).
(25) Pick out a plant from a local nursery/plant shop
Details: Charlotte has a growing list of plant shops. Consider supporting these local businesses and add some life to your space.
- PlantBar – 2452 Park Rd. Unit D
- Pike Nurseries – 12630 N Community House Rd.
- The Gardens at BlackHawk – 4225 Park Rd.
- The Cactus Club – 1425 Winnifred St. Ste. 106
- Exceptional Terrariums – Atherton Market, 2000 South Blvd.
- Malone’s Nursery – 100 Radio Rd.
- Oakdale Greenhouses – 5626 Statesville Rd.
- Shades of Moss – 2422 North Tryon St.
(26) Celebrate Memorial Day Weekend at the Coca-Cola 600
The event: Expect all the big names in NASCAR, a salute to military heroes, beer, and 600 miles of loud, heart-pumping racing.
Details: Sunday, May 30 at 6 p.m. at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Buy tickets.
(27) Take a dip in one of Charlotte’s swimming pools
YMCA pools: They’ve got over 15 pools and waterparks across our city.
Neighborhood pools: Here are the details on 8 neighborhood swim clubs you can join, including pricing, amenities, and waitlist times. Now’s the time to join a local pool before summer hits.
Apartment pools: Get ready to party because Charlotte’s apartment pool scene is huuuge. Here are the 10 best apartment pools.
(28) Ride a jet ski on Lake Norman
Places to rent jet skis
- What’s Up Watersports – Starting from $139 for 2 hours
- Lake Effects – Starting from $179 for 2 hours
- Aquaventure Watercraft Rentals (Membership includes boat and jet ski rentals)
Pro tip: Chill out on Lake Norman’s Ramsey Creek Beach after your jet ski ride. It opens late May.
(29) Climb the Deep Water Solo rock wall at USNWC
Details: The USNWC’s deep water solo is a series of climbing walls (ranging 25 to 40 feet tall) that hang over a 20-foot deep pool. Climbers tackle the wall without a harness and nothing but water below.
Price: $59 adult day pass gets you access to all available land and water activities.