Plus, Billy Graham statue unveiled.
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Today’s Weather

79º | 40% chance of precipitation
Sunrise 6:17 a.m. | Sunset 8:22 p.m.
Full Weather Report | Traffic Report

🥤 Get ready to Cheer
An aerial shot of downtown Salisbury with thousands of people on the streets for a street festival.
The Cheerwine Festival draws ~60,000 people to downtown Salisbury every year. | Photo via City of Salisbury
Three cheers for Cheerwine. The annual Cheerwine Festival returns this weekend, celebrating the uniquely southern soft drink in its hometown of Salisbury, North Carolina.

When + Where?
  • Saturday, May 18 — 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
  • Center of the festival will be at the cross of Main and Innes streets
Ready to party? Cheerwine enthusiasts and first-time visitors alike will discover hundreds of vendors, musical performances, Cheerwine-themed merchandise, food, drinks, and more.

The Cheerwine Festival is free to attend. Editor’s note: bring extra spending money to visit the vendors.

The inaugural festival began in 2017 to celebrate Cheerwine’s 100th anniversary. The event was an incredible success, with tens of thousands of people from across the Carolinas converging in the city. In 2018, the festival doubled in size to include nearly all of the downtown area.

An artist's street map of downtown Salisbury.

The City of Salisbury will offer complimentary shuttle service for festival-goers — running from 11:40 a.m. to 11 p.m.


Photo via City of Salisbury

  • Cheerwine-inspired food and drinks from 50+ vendors + two beer gardens featuring 10 Cheerwine-infused beers
  • Food Lion’s “Taste of Carolina Originals” offering free samples from regional favorites like Cackalacky and Cook Out
  • Arts and crafts — including Cheerwine merchandise from over 100 artisans and vendors
  • Family-friendly activities + games
  • A Cheerwine history exhibit at the Rowan Museum
  • Free trolley tours highlighting historic downtown landmarks
A music band performs with lights and smoke on the stage.

The Cheerwine Festival draws local, up-and-coming bands to award-winning musical artists.


Photo via the City of Salisbury

Live Music Lineup
What’s a party without music? Visitors can look forward to these performances from 2 to 10 p.m:
What’s your favorite part of The Cheerwine Festival?

A. Food trucks + drinks
B. Live music performances
C. Local art vendors + merchandise
D. Historic Salisbury trolley tours
Friday, May 17
  • Time Laps 24 Hour Relay Race | Friday, May 17 | 3-8 p.m. | US National Whitewater Center, 5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy., Charlotte | $12 | Cheer for racers competing in a 24-hour trail-running relay.
  • Science on the Rocks | Friday, May 17 | 6-10 p.m. | Discovery Place Science, 301 N. Tryon St., Charlotte | $18-$22 | Grab a cocktail, pet an animal, and get hands-on in the labs at Uptown’s largest recurring social event.
  • Tim McGraw: Standing Room Only Tour 2024 | Friday, May 17 | 7 p.m. | Spectrum Center, 333 E. Trade St., Charlotte | $39.50-$189.50 | Break out your “Southern Voice” by seeing the country music icon in Uptown.
Saturday. May 18
  • ONE Fest Charlotte’s Yoga + Music + Arts Festival | Saturday, May 18 | 10 a.m.-11 p.m. | Lenny Boy Brewing Co., 3000 S. Tryon St., Charlotte | $69-79 | Celebrate art and yoga during this festival featuring 80+ classes and workshops + live music, food trucks, and vendors.
  • MeckDec Day | Saturday, May 18 | 11 a.m.-5 p.m. | The Charlotte Museum of History, 3500 Shamrock Dr., Charlotte | $5-$10 | Celebrate, learn, + reflect on the legendary Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence.
  • Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival | Saturday, May 18 | 12-6 p.m. | Ballantyne’s Backyard, 11611 N. Community House Rd., Charlotte | $45-$75 | Savor delicious barbecue from renowned pit masters + drinks, games, and live music.
  • Pop N Pour: Charlotte Wine & Beer Festival | Saturday, May 18 | 1-4 p.m. | Montford, 1518 Montford Dr. , Charlotte | $15 | Enjoy unlimited wine and beer samples, live music, games, raffles, and food from Angry Ales.
  • St. Jude Celebrity Chef and Wine Dinner | Saturday, May 18 | 6-11 p.m. | Charlotte Marriott City Center, 100 West Trade St., Charlotte | $500 | Join a festive evening of dining, live entertainment, dancing, and cocktails to benefit St. Jude ‘s.
  • Charlotte FC vs. LA Galaxy | Saturday, May 18 | 7:30 p.m. | Bank of America Stadium, 800 S. Mint St., Charlotte | $29-$190 | Cheer as Charlotte FC aims for their second-straight win at home.
Sunday, May 19
  • Charlotte Symphony Orchestra | Sunday, May 19 | 1 p.m. | Cain Center for the Arts, 21348 Catawba Ave., Cornelius | $47-72 | Marvel at the works of a dozen composers during this special performance.
  • The Art of Reading: “The Warmth of Other Suns” | Sunday, May 19 | 2-3:30 p.m. | The Mint Museum Uptown, 500 S. Tryon St., Charlotte | $10-$15 | Make connections between literature and visual art, discussing author Isabel Wilkerson’s book “The Warmth of Other Suns.”
  • Sunday Supper at L’Ostrica: French Countryside | Sunday, May 19 | 5:30 p.m. | L’Ostrica, 4701 Park Rd., Unit D, Charlotte | $75 | Savor flavors from a French countryside-themed menu in this casual dinner event.
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News Notes
  • Mecklenburg County Manager Dena Diorio recommends a $2.5 billion operating budget for the 2025 fiscal year — a 5.5% increase compared to 2024. The county manager recommends a tax rate of 48.8 cents per $100 of assessed valuation. That represents a 1.5 cent increase in the tax rate.
Real Estate
  • Only five units remain open at The Regent at Eastover — a luxury condo development in Eastover that recently wrapped a four-year construction project. The condos at 130 Cherokee Rd. have sold as high as nearly $4 million. (Charlotte Business Journal)
  • Storm damage in Rock Hill is estimated to cost around $5 million. York County Emergency Management said the processing of tree debris is over $500,000 outside of the budget. The majority of costs do not qualify for federal funding relief. (WCNC)
  • Camp North End is debuting its first studio crawl tonight. From 6 to 9 p.m., some of Charlotte’s best artists will open their studio doors for a behind-the-scenes look at their work.
  • Hyatt Centric SouthPark has been honored with the 2024 AAA Carolinas 4-Diamond Award. The SouthPark hotel won this prestigious national travel and lodging industry award for the third consecutive year.
  • A seven-ft. bronze statue honoring Rev. Billy Graham has been unveiled inside the US Capitol building in Washington, DC. The statue of the Charlotte-born evangelist will stand in the National Statuary Hall.
  • What are the biggest takeaways from the Panthers’ schedule announcement? Go beyond the scoreboard for the biggest stories on the Carolina Panthers with Locked On’s daily, team-focused podcasts.
  • Did you know? Getting a professional certificate and putting it on your resume can significantly improve your chances of landing a job. The University of South Carolina has a wide range of professional education + certificate programs designed to boost your competitiveness in today’s job market. Learn more.*
  • Imagine waking up to the crisp scent of mountain air as sunlight gently filters through the forest’s canopy. AutoCamp Asheville invites you to experience the great outdoors in unparalleled comfort (think: Airstream suites, cabins with fire pits, and premium tents with spa-inspired bathrooms). Book early for the best rates.*
  • Ah, the art of the balance transfer. This card offers not one, not six, but 18 months of 0% intro APR on balance transfers, giving you nearly two years to save big. (Plus, you can earn 2% cash back on purchases with no annual fee.) Learn more and apply.*
🏙️ Party in the streets
People bustle through a crowded street market with lines of tents in the background.
The first season of Camden Commons began in 2022, bringing hundreds of people to South End - making it a resounding success. | Photo via @southendclt
On Sunday, May 19, the streets of South End will come alive for the return of Camden Commons.

What is Camden Commons?
Several blocks of Camden Road will close to welcome shopping, local food, games, and more. This family-friendly event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is free to everyone.

Street closure
Camden Road will be closed from Tremont Avenue to East/West boulevards from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

How to Get to Camden Commons?
  • The LYNX Blue Line has a stopat East/West Blvd. station.
  • Rent a JoyRides e-assist bike and travel by Rail Trail.
  • Paid parking garages are available at 100 W. Worthington, the Design Center, the Square, The Line, 110 East Blvd., or 1616 Camden.
Editor’s note: Due to the possibility of rain this weekend, you can stay up to date with announcements regarding the event by following @southendclt + @ourclttoday on Instagram and Facebook.

Can’t make this one?
Camden Commons is scheduled again for Sunday, June 16 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Buy
Small biz. Celebrate National Small Business Month by exploring our retail shop, Six & Main, featuring local brands from across the country. Find unique gifts for your friends or treat yourself to something new.
On Thursday, we asked, “What’s your favorite part about going to the movies?”

Rows of red cushioned seats on the balcony level inside the newly remodeled theatre.

New seats were among the months-long renovation project for the Gem Theatre reopening in Kannapolis.


Photo via City of Kannapolis

When reporting on the reopening of the historic Gem Theatre in Kannapolis, here were your favorite cinematic experiences:

50% — Seeing a new movie
31% — Fresh popcorn and snacks
12% — Comfortable seats
6% — The ambience
6AM City In-house
The Wrap
CLT_Jack VanderToll Today’s edition by:
From the editor
My fellow City Editor Maria and I enjoyed a fantastic dinner this week at Steak 48 in SouthPark. I recommend trying it out for yourself. Stay tuned for a story on our experience coming soon.
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