• Guide to popular Charlotte festivals

    By: Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:

    Looking for a fun way to enjoy Charlotte's arts and culture offerings? These Charlotte festivals bring people together to enjoy food, wine, art and more. All are ranked highly by reviewers on sites like Yelp.
     
    Carolina Renaissance Festival
    For more than 20 years, this fall festival has brought history alive, with hundreds of costumed characters, jousting knights on horseback and an artisan marketplace. It's easy to spend a full day taking in music, comedy and theater on stages throughout the festival, or trying out the games and rides. The variety of activities and feeling of being transported to another time makes this a popular event year after year.
     
    Charlotte Pride Festival
    The Charlotte Pride Festival is an annual two-day event that includes a parade in uptown Charlotte. It's put on by Charlotte Pride, which is one of the largest LGBTQ pride organizations in the Southeast, according to its website. Reviewers love the parade and the event atmosphere.
     
    Festival in the Park
    This annual fall event is long-standing among Charlotte festivals, bringing Charlotteans together for more than 50 years. The three-day festival draws big crowds to Freedom Park, where hundreds of artists show and sell work ranging from pottery to paintings. Musicians, magicians and other entertainers perform throughout the park, and dozens of food vendors offer everything from full meals to sweet treats. Reviewers love meeting the artists and finding unique items, all while enjoying the park's scenery.
     
    Matthews Alive Festival
    This Labor Day weekend celebration includes a parade, carnival rides and games, dozens of arts and crafts booths and live music. Food vendors offer up a range of selections, including festival classics like funnel cakes and kettle corn. The event, held in downtown Matthews, helps support local nonprofit organizations.
     
    Pet Palooza
    The Humane Society holds the Pet Palooza Festival & Walk for the Animals every year. The event, held at Independence Park, includes an adoption area, vendors, food trucks and lots of activities for people and pets. Animal lovers enjoy spending the day with their dog, and seeing dogs of all types and sizes out and about at the festival.
     
    South End Hops Festival
    Attendees to this springtime event, held in South End, can sample beers from lots of local breweries, listen to live music, and try out several area food trucks. The wide variety of North Carolina breweries on hand earned praise from reviewers.
     
    South End Wine Festival
    The South End Wine Festival is a newer event (2017 marked its third year), but it's already gained a following. Reviewers gave high marks for the wide selection of wines, tasty food trucks, and event atmosphere. The fall festival, held in Charlotte's South End neighborhood, also features live music and vendors.
     
    Taste of Charlotte
    This summertime event brings dozens of area restaurants together in uptown Charlotte, where festival-goers can sample their food (admission is free, but festival coins must be purchased for restaurant samples). This popular Charlotte festival, which spans several city blocks, also features live music, children's activities, and shopping. The wide-ranging food options keep crowds coming back year after year.


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