Jody Mace

I am a freelance writer in Charlotte, North Carolina who writes for magazines and websites. Find me at Google+

Jul 032015
 
 July 3, 2015  Posted by  Free Events 5 Responses »
SkyShow Charlotte

SkyShow Charlotte

Plan your weekend on the cheap with this list of 70 and counting  free events around Charlotte, from  Friday, July 3rd, 2015, to Sunday, July 5th. Included in this list are some of the many 4th of July weekend festivals, parades and fireworks, but don’t overlook other opportunities like free gardening classes and live music.  To see a list of all the 4th of July celebrations, include the cheap (not just free) events, go here. Also, if you’re not doing this already, you can subscribe to Charlotte on the Cheap’s daily emails (just one a day), and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

But first! Shop Groupon’s 4th of July Sale all weekend! Get up to 30% EXTRA off on top of the 50% you already save with Groupon. Select deals.

Friday

Free admission to Carowinds to military personnel
6:00am: Bootcamp class at Romare Bearden Park
12:00pm: Lunchbox Music Series at Romare Bearden Park
12:00pm: English language conversation hour at International House
3:00pm: 4th of July celebration at U.S. National Whitewater Center
4:00pm: 4th of July celebration and fireworks at Harrisburg Park
5:00pm: Free bike helmets, carriage rides, scavenger hunt & more at Waxhaw First Friday
6:00pm: Brewery tour at NoDa Brewing Company
6:00pm: Friday Night Live concert in Belmont: Coming Up Brass and fireworks
6:30pm: Live music at NoDa Brewing: Nate Randall
6:30pm: Live music at Tin Roof at EpiCentre: Jane Rose and the Deadend Boys
7:00pm: Farsi language conversation hour at International House
7:00pm: Birkdale Village Mingling on the Green Summer Concert Series: Soundbarrier
7:00pm: Music at Promenade on Providence: Carolina Music Machine
7:00pm: June Tunes in Mint Hill: Queen City Brass
7:00pm: Stonecrest Concert Series: Skate Rink Jukebox
7:00pm: Blakeney Summer Concert Series: Tony Barnes Band
7:00pm: Live music at The Wine Vault: Rich Challen
10:00pm: Live music at Tin Roof at EpiCentre: Francisco Vidale (arrive before 10 for free admission)

Saturday

 

Free admission to Carowinds to military personnel
Free Fishing Day in North Carolina
Free museum admission for Bank of America customers
8:00am: Free fitness class at Romare Bearden Park: Tabata
9:00am: Patriotic potting party at Pike Nurseries
9:0am: Harrisburg 4th of July Parade
9:00am: Tega Cay 4th of July events all day: parades, celebration, fireworks
9:00am: Coulwood Community parade and 4th of July celebration
9:00am: Free fitness class at Romare Bearden Park: Rise and Flow Yoga
10:00am: Revolutionary War encampment at Kings Mountain, followed by fireworks
10:00am: 4th of July Parade in Waxhaw
10:00am: 4th of July celebration in Birkdale Village in Huntersville
10:00am: NoDa Eclectic Market
10:30am: Hickory Grove parade and 4th of July celebration
2:00pm: SkyShow Street Party in Uptown Charlotte
2:00pm: Six String Saturdays: live music outside Discovery Place–Kevin Jones and Joe Allen
2:00pm: Brewery Tour at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery (also at 3pm, 4pm)
2:00pm: 4th of July concerts at Sycamore Brewing: Pluto for Planet and Dirt Poor
3:00pm: Squirt Day Party at Snug Harbor: water fight and live music
3:00pm: 4th of July celebration at U.S. National Whitewater Center
4:00pm: 4th of July celebration and fireworks at Harrisburg Park
4:00pm: Live music at Birdsong Brewing: Leisure McCorkle
4:00pm: Lowes YMCA 4th of July festival and fireworks
4:00pm: 4th of July Pig Pickin’ in Plaza Midwood
4:30pm: Beach party and fireworks in Waxhaw
5:00pm: Brewery tour at NoDa Brewing Company
5:15pm: Parade and 4th of July celebration in Davidson
5:30pm: Parade and concert in Matthews for 4th of July: Too Much Sylvia
7:00pm: Birkdale Village Mingling on the Green Summer Concert Series: John T. Woodall Band
7:00pm: Live music at Promenade on Providence: StellaRising
7:00pm: Stonecrest Concert Series: Skate Rink Jukebox & Jeff Brown Band
7:00pm: Blakeney Summer Concert Series: Tony Barnes Band
7:00pm: Live music at The Wine Vault: House of Music
7:30pm: Comedy Open-Mic at Smelly Cat Coffeehouse
8:30pm: SkyShow Charlotte–fireworks start after baseball game ends
9:15pm: Lake Wylie fireworks near Buster Boyd Bridge
9:30pm: Fireworks at Queens Landing

Sunday

Free admission to Carowinds to military personnel
Free museum admission for Bank of America customers
Free admission to Levine Museum of the New South for groups of fewer than 10 people
10:00am: Revolutionary War encampment at Kings Mountain
2:00pm: Stream Stroll in Reedy Creek Nature Preserve
2:00pm: Brewery tour at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery (also at 3pm, 4pm)
3:00pm Brewery tour at NoDa Brewing Company
5:00pm: Live music at The Wine Vault: Jared Allan
5:00pm: Play pickleball for free 
6:00pm: Karaoke at Snug Harbor
6:30pm: Open bluegrass jam at Tommy’s Pub
7:00pm: Organ summer recital series: Dexter Kennedy at Myers Park United Methodist Church
8:00pm: Live music at Tin Roof at EpiCentre: The Business People
Jul 022015
 
 July 2, 2015  Posted by  Free Events, home, South Charlotte 2 Responses »

plants
Pike Nurseries, at Toringdon Circle Shopping Center, 12630 North Community House Road, is offering several free gardening classes and events this month. No registration is required. Simply show up. Learn more here.

Patriotic Potting Party: Summer Container Gardening Class*
Saturday, July 4 at 9 a.m. at all Pike Nurseries store locations
Let freedom ring! Before celebrating Independence Day with barbecue and fireworks, stop by any Pike Nurseries location for a class on how to plant a star spangled container garden with festive flowers in red, white and blue! After the discussion, garden experts will help guests plant their own patriotic pot to bring home and enjoy for the holiday.
*Planting a container is optional. Potting soil will be provided. Price determined by products you select.

Critter Control: Solutions for Controlling Critters in Your Garden Class
Saturday, July 11 at 9 a.m. at all Pike Nurseries store locations
While deer, rabbits and chipmunks may be cute, they can really wreak havoc on a beautiful garden. During this free class, Pike Nurseries experts will discuss easy ways to keep these pesky critters and bugs, including mosquitoes, deer, rabbits and more, from invading backyard BBQs this summer. Guests will also learn about the best repellents and critter-proof plants available at Pike Nurseries to naturally deter unwanted animals and keep bugs at bay.

Terrariums and Fairy Gardens Class
Saturday, July 25 at 9 a.m. at all Pike Nurseries store locations
Easy, affordable, and fun for expert gardeners and children alike, terrariums and fairy gardens make it simple to bring the beauty of the outdoors inside! To help guests beat the summer heat and create their own indoor glass garden, the experts at Pike Nurseries are hosting a free class on these miniature masterpieces. Customers will learn basic planting techniques, design ideas and care tips for terrariums and fairy gardens.

Jul 022015
 
 July 2, 2015  Posted by  4th of July, holiday No Responses »
SkyShow Charlotte

SkyShow Charlotte

Plan your Charlotte area 4th of July 2015 festivities with this list of free and cheap July 4th events. These events include fireworks, parades, live music, historical presentations, water fun and much more. Follow each link to find the important details that you will need. Unless I’ve mentioned a price it’s free. And make sure to check the date, because some are not on the 4th. And I’ve put “fireworks” in red so you can find them easily. This is a growing list, so keep checking back! If you know of a free (or very cheap) 4th of July event, please let me know about it. cheapskate@charlotteonthecheap.com And don’t forget that to subscribe to Charlotte on the Cheap’s email list. 

charlotte 4th of july fireworks

4th of July Festival at US National Whitewater Center
Festival begins on Friday July 3rd and continues to Saturday July 4th. Includes live music followed by a fireworks display each night. Live music includes Shook Twins, The Honeycutters, Greensky Bluegrass, and more. Admission is free. Parking is $5.

Carowinds Military Days
Free park admission to any active, inactive, or retired United States Service men and women with a valid military ID on July 3rd, 4th and 5th. Fireworks July 4th.

Free Fishing Day
4th of July is North Carolina’s free fishing day. Fish in any public body of water without a fishing license. Some facilities have loaner gear too.


Groupon Shop Now

4th of July Celebration at BB&T Ballpark
Skyshow Fireworks Spectacular follows the July 4th  game between Team USA and Team Cuba. If you’re not attending the game, you should be able to see the fireworks from any place adjacent to the ballpark, like Romare Bearden Park. Here’s some more information. There will also be a free street festival from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. in front of the ballpark. Live music by Hot Sauce, as well as carnival rides, bounce houses and more.

Waxhaw 4th of July Celebration
In downtown Waxhaw. Saturday, July 4th. Parade at 10 a.m.; Beach party 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.; Fireworks at 9:15 pm. The celebration features live music from Smokin’ and Audio Wine.

Lowe’s YMCA
Celebration at Lowe’s YMCA 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. July 3rd. Includes games, inflatables, live music, entertainment, vendors, and fireworks.

coulwood
Coulwood Community 4th of July Parade and Celebration
Saturday, July 4th. Parade starts at Coulwood Middle School at 9 a.m. and ends at Paw Creek Elementary School. The celebration continues at Coulwood Community Park, 506 Coulwood Drive, and includes games, music and a hot dog fundraiser until 1 p.m. All are invited to swim, for free, in the swimming pool from 1 p.m. to 7 p .m.

4th of July Festival at Birkdale Village
Activities take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. July 4th. Festival includes face-painting, balloon twisting, arts and crafts, a bike parade and the Huntersville Fire Department water fight.

Charlotte Symphony
Charlotte Symphony plays at Symphony Park at SouthPark. This is not free. It costs $16. Friday, July 3rd. Gates open at 5 p.m., prelude performances start at 7 p.m. Charlotte Symphony performs at 8:15 p.m. Fireworks follow.

Charlotte Museum of History 4th of July Celebration
Saturday, July 4th, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This is not a free event. It costs $5. Free for museum members. This event will feature lectures, kids’ crafts, tours of the Hezekiah Alexander home site, and ringing of the American Freedom Bell. Register here.

Tega Cay 4th of July Celebration
Festival begins with a land parade at 9 a.m. July 4th, followed by a canoe joust, a boat parade, the Carolina Ski Show Team’s performance, the splish-splash summer bash and a fish fry. At 9:30 p.m. there will be fireworks.

Lake Wylie Fireworks
Fireworks will be viewable from near the Buster Boyd Bridge around 9:15 p.m.

plaza midwood pig pickin

15th Annual 4th of July Pig Pickin’ in Plaza Midwood
July 4th from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Live music on three stages in the neighborhood. Lots of food trucks.

Harrisburg 4th of July Celebration
2 day celebration at Harrisburg Park.
Friday, July 3: 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Live music, and then fireworks at 10 p.m.
Saturday, July 4: Parade down Highway 49 from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. And then celebration in Harrisburg Park starting at 4 p.m. Live music, cornhole tournament, and then fireworks at 10 p.m.. Park closes at 11:30 p.m.

Davidson Independence Day Celebration
Saturday, July 4th, there will be a parade for all to participate in, starting at McEver Field on South Street at 5:15 p.m., proceeding to the town Green, where the band Pushh will perform at 6:00 p.m.

Kannapolis summer entertainment series charlotte symphony
Kannapolis: Charlotte Symphony and Fireworks
Thursday, July 2nd. Charlotte Symphony performs at 7 p.m. at Village Park. Fireworks follow around 9:30 p.m.

Bottle Boats and Cereal Canoes
Make small boats out of recycled materials at Latta Plantation Nature Preserve, at the fishing pier. Bring a picnic, and materials you want to use for your boat, or the materials provided. Friday, July 3rd, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Free. No registration required.

Kannapolis Intimidators’ ballpark
Saturday, July 4th. All-American Community Celebration with a patriotic parade and music and a kids’ zone including carnival rides and kids’ zone. 6 p.m. After the game there will be Fireworks . Tickets for the whole evening are just $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and for kids under age 12. There will also be Fireworks after the game on Friday, July 3rd.

Queen’s Landing
Fireworks on July 4th at 9:30 p.m. It’s free but there are also many river cruises available for a fee. 1459 River Highway, Mooresville.

Sycamore Brewing
July 4th free concert. 2 p.m.: Pluto for Planet. 6 p.m.: Dirt Poor. Food trucks on site.

Kings Mountain
The city of Kings Mountain is celebrating with a Revolutionary War encampment with re-enactors on July 4th and July 5th. The event starts both days at 10 a.m. On Saturday, July 4th, it ends with patriotic music, a mock cannon battle, and a large fireworks show. On July 5th the event ends at 2 p.m.

Red, White, and Belmont
In downtown Belmont Friday, July 3rd. Starts with concert by Coming Up Brass at 6 p.m. on Main Street. Followed by fireworks.

Matthews People’s Parade
Matthews People’s Parade meets at the Town Hall Green at 5:30pm July 4th, and parade begins at 6 p.m. Followed by concert from Too Much Sylvia at 7 p.m. at Stumptown Park.

jjs red hots all american hot dogs

JJ’s Red Hots
Saturday, July 4th, get an All-American Hot Dog for just $1 at both JJ’s Red Hots locations. Includes pickle relish, diced onions and yellow mustard.

hickory grove parade

Hickory Grove Parade and Celebration
The 47th Annual Hickory Grove Parade and Celebration is the largest block party in East Charlotte. Saturday, July 4th.  The parade starts at 10:30 a.m. at Hickory Grove Recreation Center, 6709 Pence Road, and proceeds to The Grove Church, 5735 East W.T. Harris Boulevard, where the celebration continues until 2:30 p.m., with live music, games, food and contests.

Red White and Boom
Friday, July 3rd, 2015, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., in Old Town in Rock Hill, South Carolina. There’s a kids’ zone (there’s a fee for this) a free concert by The Fantasy Band at 8 p.m. and fireworks at 10 p.m.

Red, White & Brew Bar Crawl
Saturday, July 4th, 7 p.m. to 2 p.m. EpiCentre. $15.

Lincolnton 4th of July Celebration
Saturday, July 4th, 6:30 p.m. 100 block of North Academy Street, Lincolnton. Parade, contests, inflatables. Followed by fireworks at 9:45 p.m. at Lincolnton High School Stadium.

Midwood Smokehouse Rib-eating challenge
Saturday, July 4th, 3 p.m. at Midwood Smokehouse, 1401 Central Avenue. Free to watch: The contestants will have 30 minutes to eat their way through a full rack of Hormel baby back ribs and a plateful of fixings including collards, potato salad, baked beans, Texas toast and a slice of watermelon. $25 to participate. Registration form.

Jul 022015
 
 July 2, 2015  Posted by  Affiliate No Responses »

discount massage charlotte
Groupon’s got a 4th of July sale going on now through July 5th, 2015. Save up to 30% extra on a bunch of deals. This is on top of the 50% or so you are already saving with Groupon. You don’t need a promo code for this one. The prices are marked on each deal. The markdowns are good only through July 5th, 2015. There are deals for products like Dyson vacuums and a Little Giant ladder,  health and beauty deals at places like Tranquility Point Massage,  and pottery painting at The Pottery Cottage. Plus lots, lots more.

buynow-green-5

Jul 012015
 
 July 1, 2015  Posted by  Free Events, Gaston County, Music No Responses »
John Dee Holeman and Tad Walker

John Dee Holeman and Tad Walker

Gaston County Museum’s 17th Annual Blues Out Back concert series takes place the second Friday of the month through September, from 6:30pm to 8pm. Bring your blankets, lawn chairs and a picnic and enjoy live music behind the museum, at 131 W. Main Street in Dallas. These are free events.

Blues Out Back 2015 Schedule

May 8: Abe Reid
June 12: John Dee Holeman and Tad Walker
July 10: Mike “Lightnin'” Wells
August 14: Jon Shain
September 4: Pat “Mother Blues” Cohen

Jul 012015
 
 July 1, 2015  Posted by  Free Events, Kids, Sports 1 Response »

free football camp charlotte nc
Crown Town Falcons, a youth football, basketball and cheerleading program, is holding free football camps for kids on Saturday, July 11th, and Saturday, July 18th, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. both days. The camps take place at Reid Academy, 4108 West Tyvola Road. Kids age 4 to 5 will play flag football, and kids age 6 to 14 will play contact football and learn defensive and offensive strategies. To register your child, email ctfalcons2015@gmail.com.

Jul 012015
 
 July 1, 2015  Posted by  Wait, there's more No Responses »

church arson charlotte south black
Briar Creek Church was intentionally set on fire June 24th. Briar Creek is one of several predominantly black churches throughout the south set on fire in the last week. The fire destroyed a wing of the church that was to be used for a summer camp. The summer camp has been moved to the former Green Memorial Church site, 1324 The Plaza, and they need some help. Their most immediate need is food for the campers. They provide breakfast, lunch and snacks each day.

Food needed: cereal, bagels, milk, sliced peach and pears, baked beans, turkey franks, hamburger patties and buns, hot dog buns, chicken nuggets, turkey lunch meats, fish sticks, ketchup, wheat bread, potato chips, Kool Aid, crackers and applesauce.

You can bring these items to the Green Memorial site, 1324 The Plaza, or to Metrolina Baptist Association, 328 West Carson Boulavard, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. If you have questions, you can call MBA at 704-375-1197.

You can also make a monetary donation to help Briar Creek Church rebuild. Send a check to Metrolina Baptist Association, 328 West Carson Boulevard, Charlotte, NC, 28203. Make the check out to MBA and put “Briar Creek Church” in the memo.

Jul 012015
 

snug harbor squirt day party
The first Saturday of each summer month, cool off at a Squirt Day Party at Snug Harbor. It’s free and water guns (and water) will be provided. The next one is Saturday, July 4th, at 3 p.m. Doors open at 2 p.m. Music will be provided by Gangsta Boo of the rap group Three 6 Mafia, Rapper Shane and Elevator Jay. Age 18+.

Stick around for the Plaza Midwood 4th of July Pig Pickin’ afterwards. Snug Harbor will be one of the venues hosting live music outside. It’s free too.

The last two Squirt Day Parties were take place August 1st and September 5th.

Jun 302015
 
 June 30, 2015  Posted by  Music, NoDa, The City No Responses »

trumpet
Whether you like listening to jazz or you’re a musician interested in joining in, Mayhue Bostic‘s Jazz Jam Sessions are for you. They’re held at Cube NoDa, 617 East 28th Street, on the following dates in 2015:

  • July 11
  • August 29
  • September 12
  • October 10
  • November 14
  • December 12

This is a free event. The Mayhue Bostic Group performs from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Musicians can sit in with the group. Then the Jazz Jam sessions run until 11:00 p.m. Amplifiers are available for piano, bass and guitar. All ages are welcome to listen and to participate.

A caterer, Cooks Corner, will have food and drinks for sale.