Plan Ahead: Summer events happening around Charlotte

Make the most of the warm weather with this list of the best local events and activities happening this summer.

A view of Uptown Charlotte's tall buildings, two apartment complexes and Bank of America Stadium from a high-rise in South End.

The Charlotte skyline looks good when the sun shines on a cloudless day.

Photo by CLTtoday

Table of Contents

Summer’s here and Charlotte is so ready. From live music and Memorial Day celebrations to hiking and festivals, summer is when the Queen City comes alive.

Get ready to get outside with this guide featuring 20+ summer events happening between May and August.

Concerts + live music

Lovin’ Life Music Fest | Friday, May 3-Sunday, May 5 | Times vary | First Ward Park, 300 N. Brevard St., Charlotte| $129-$1,299 | The inaugural music festival will fill Uptown with 40+ performers, vendors, and music lovers.

Another World Music Festival | Friday, May 3- Saturday, May 4 | Charlotte Motor Speedway, 6570 Bruton Smith Blvd., Concord | $25-$1,049 | Expect bumping EDM from more than 20 artists rocking the two-day festival.

Boonerang Music and Arts Festival | Friday, June 14-Saturday, June 15 | Various locations along King Street, Boone | Free | Expect multiple stages across downtown Boone + live music and art vendors.

Carowinds Summer Music Fest | Fridays and Saturdays in July and August | Free with admission | Enjoy a brand new multi-weekend music festival series featuring a star-studded lineup including Flo Rida, LeAnn Rimes, and Skillet.

Someone in black gloves pulls meat from a barbecued pig over a grill.

The Carolina BBQ Festival brought hundreds of people to Victoria Yards in Uptown.

Photo by CLTtoday

Food and drink

Best Dam Food Festival | Saturday, May 18 | Catawba Park, 2351 New Gray Rock Rd., Tega Cay | Free | This inaugural festival will feature live music and mouthwatering foods from vendors serving tacos, pizzas, fish, burgers, and more.

Cheerwine Festival | Saturday, May 18 | 217 S. Main St., Salisbury | Free | Enjoy a fresh taste of the Carolinas during this massive festival celebrating all things Cheerwine.

Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival | Saturday, May 18 | Ballantyne’s Backyard, 11611 N. Community House Rd., Ballantyne | $45-$125 | This 16th annual event serves up smokin’ barbecue and all-you-can-taste samples of beer + bourbon.

Bites on Seventh | Saturday, June 1 | Victoria Yards, 209 E. 7th St., Charlotte | Free | Try bite-sized samples of popular menu items from local food trucks + restaurants.

Taste of Charlotte | Friday, June 7-Sunday, June 9 | Various locations, Tryon St., Charlotte | Free | Savor cuisine from various restaurants while strolling through the festival’s three stages of entertainment, performances, and interactive tours.

People swim in a rock quarry with trees and clouds in the background.

Swimming, jumping off rocks, and swinging off the rope swing at Carrigan Farms are fun for kids and kids-at-heart.

Photo via Carrigan Farms

Outdoors Events

South End Farmer’s Market | Saturday, May 4-Saturday, December 28 | South End Farmers Market at Atherton, 2140 South Blvd., Charlotte | Cost of purchase | Shop local produce, fresh fish, handmade pasta, and so much more.

River Jam | Thursday, May 2-Sunday, September 28 | 5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy., Charlotte | Free | Live music concerts will take place at a one-of-a-kind outdoor venue on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights from May through September.

Open Swim at Carrigan Farms | Saturday, May 18-Monday, September 2 | 1261 Oakridge Farm Hwy., Mooresville | $25 | Swim and lounge in a refreshing, spring-fed quarry.

Fourth of July Celebration | Monday, July 3-Tuesday, July 4 | 5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy., Charlotte | Free | Celebrate Independence Day over two days with music, races, multiple yoga practices, and more.

Charlotte Edge Fest 2024 | Saturday, July 13 | NoDa Brewing, 150 W. 32nd St., Charlotte | Experience large-scale live paints from local artists, live music, dance, spoken word, a fashion show, and more.

Water Lantern Festival | Saturday, July 13 | Symphony Park, 4400 Sharon Rd., Charlotte | $35.99-$55.99 | Witness thousands of lanterns being ignited at this nighttime festival.

A person on the Charlotte Pride main stage speaking to a large crowd.

The Charlotte Pride Parade and Festival features three stages with a full lineup of performances.

Photo by Mike Mazely/Courtesy of Charlotte Pride

Pride events

Reel Out Charlotte | Wednesday, May 15-Sunday, May 19 | The Independent Picture House, 4237 Raleigh St., Charlotte | Free | Celebrate independent filmmakers in this festival that highlights life, love, and triumph on the big screen.

Icons of Pride | Saturday, June 8 | The Fillmore, 820 Hamilton St., Charlotte | $33-60 | Celebrate Pride Month with legendary music and a long lineup of local drag queens hosted by Buff Faye.

Rock Hill Pride Festival | Saturday, June 15-Sunday, June 23 | Downtown Historic District, E. Main St., Rock Hill | Free | This eight-day festival celebrates the LGBTQ+ community, diversity, and love.

Salisbury Pride | Saturday, June 22 | Bell Tower Green, 15 S. Jackson St., #101, Salisbury | Free | The 12th annual festival brings families and friends together to celebrate equality.

Charlotte Pride Parade & Festival | Friday, Aug. 16-Sunday, Aug. 18 | Uptown, N. Tryon St., Charlotte | Free | Head to Tryon Street for vendors, at least three stages for performers, a kid zone, food trucks, and more during the region’s biggest Pride event.

A bucket of freshly picked strawberries from Bush-n-Vine, a u-pick farm in the Olde English District.

The Olde English District (Chester, Chesterfield, Fairfield, Kershaw, Lancaster, Union, and York counties) has plenty of farms to explore — perfect for a springtime day trip.

Photo by Visit York County

Berry picking

Bush N Vine Farm, 1650 Filbert Hwy., York
Enjoy a day picking fresh strawberries, blueberries, peaches, blackberries, and more.

Carrigan Farms, 1261 Oakridge Farm Hwy., Mooresville
Grab fresh vegetables and strawberries before spending the afternoon swimming in the quarry on site.

Hall Family Farm, 445 W. Rebound Rd., Lancaster
Pick strawberries + enjoy a meal from the on-site kitchen before meeting some of the resident animals.

The Ivy Place Berry Farm, 8525 Van Wyck Rd., Lancaster
Create memories on this farm known for its strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, tomatoes, and flowers.

Springs Farm, 1010 Springfield Pkwy., Fort Mill
Pick strawberries and peaches at this family-run farm + shop assorted vegetables, ice cream, and slushies at the market.

Seasonal essentials

  • Tired of losing your sunglasses in the water? These floating sunglasses provide optimal clarity and comfort for all your summer adventures.
  • Shield yourself from the sun while adding a touch of flair to your outfit with one of our hats.
  • This iceless cooler keeps your drinks cold for seven hours.
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