Your704 Weekender: Here’s what’s happening in Charlotte

CHARLOTTE — Fall is the season to get outside and have some fun, and you don’t have to look far to find something cool to do in Charlotte this weekend.

Please be sure to use the links provided to check for last-minute updates and safety protocols before you go.

Cheer on the home team when the Charlotte Checkers take on the Hershey Bears in their home opener on Friday at Bojangles Coliseum. On Saturday, kids get a free T-shirt and admission for $5. Click here for more information.

Cruise on a coaster, grab a turkey leg, check out the petting zoo and enjoy family-friendly entertainment at the North Carolina State Fair in Raleigh or the South Carolina State Fair in Columbia. Both events are open through Sunday. Click here for more information.

Another place where you can fly high on a Ferris wheel and get your fill of funnel cake is the Cabarrus Fair at Route 29 Pavilion near Charlotte Motor Speedway. The fair is open daily through Oct. 31. Click here for more information.

Let the “Madness” begin! The 2021 Mint Hill Madness festival returns this weekend to Veterans Memorial Park. There will be carnival rides and games, live music, food and a fireworks show. Click here for more information.

Enjoy a night full of friendly ghosts, goblins and favorite characters at the Halloween Spooktacular on Friday at Chestnut Square Park in Indian Trail. Kids can go trick or treating and there will be games and other activities. Click here for more information.

See Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas” while the Charlotte Symphony performs the rambunctious score live on Friday and Saturday at Belk Theater. Click here for more information.  

The Mint Museum is celebrating its 85th anniversary all weekend with free admission at both locations and a lineup of festivities planned to commemorate the Mint’s founding as North Carolina’s first art museum. Click here for more information.

Downtown Belmont will be transformed into an outdoor art gallery for “Moonlight on Main,” which will feature a series of lunar-inspired events such as art exhibitions, theater performances, concerts and yoga sessions through Nov. 7. Click here for more information.

Dine out on a deal and support Black-owned eateries during Black Restaurant Week. Through Oct. 31 participating restaurants will offer menu items at discounted prices. Click here for more information.

Enjoy family-friendly entertainment at the 20th annual Baxter Village Fall Festival on Saturday at Baxter Town Center. There will be arts and crafts, inflatables, game and other activities. Click here for more information.

See a colorful culture on display and enjoy family-friendly performances at the 21st annual Charlotte Asian Festival and Dragon Boat Race on Saturday at Ramsey Creek Park on Lake Norman. Click here for more information.

Have a good time for a good cause at Frank’s Chili Fest street party on Saturday in Plaza Midwood. There will be a chili cook-off among Charlotte chefs, live music and lots of local merchants set up. Proceeds will benefit Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood. Click here for more information.

See bands, grab a bite from a food truck and have a locally brewed beer at the 9th annual Laketoberfest Music & Brew Festival on Saturday at Bailey Road Park in Cornelius. Click here for more information.

Have a spooktacular time at Belmont’s BooFest on Saturday at Stowe Park. There will be costume contests, games, carnival rides, trick or treating and other activities. Click here for more information.

Pack a picnic and check out one of Davidson’s newest series, Concerts at the Circles, on Saturday. Click here for more information.

Enjoy two days of music, games, arts and crafts, food and other activities at the Dallas Lavender Lane Fall Festival on Saturday and Sunday. Click here for more information.

Music fans can check out cool crooner Michael Bublé on Sunday at the Spectrum Center. The show, originally scheduled for March 2020, was among the first cancellations due to the pandemic and has been rescheduled several times since. Click here for more information.

Ongoing events

Have a screaming good time as you navigate the darkness of haunted mazes and scare zones when Carowinds transforms into the terrifying SCarowinds. Open select nights through Oct. 31. Click here for more information.

Get ready to do the time warp when the Actor’s Theatre of Charlotte performs “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” at The Barn at MoRA. Performances run Wednesday through Sunday through Oct. 31. Click here for more information.

See classic thrillers such as “Halloween,” “Nightmare on Elm Street” and “The Shining” at Ayrsley Grand Cinemas’ Retro Horror Series. The frightening flicks include retro pricing of $5 and will be screened through Nov. 4. Click here for more information.

Get lost in fun at the seven-acre Amazing Maize Maze at Rural Hill, which opens Saturday and continues through Nov. 7. Click here for more information.

Calling all time travelers: The Carolina Renaissance Festival is back for its 28th season! See outdoor theater, arts and crafts, a jousting tournament and other attractions at the festival, which runs every Saturday and Sunday through Nov. 21 in Huntersville. This weekend, bring a new or gently used coat to donate to WSOC-TV’s Steve’s Coats for Kids and receive a free child admission ticket. Click here for more information.

Step inside famous masterpieces at the “Immersive Van Gogh” exhibition at Camp North End. The show, which runs through Nov. 21, brings to life the art of Vincent Van Gogh through entrancing, moving images that highlight the brush strokes, details and colors of each piece. Click here for more information.

Food Truck Friday in University City takes place at Armored Cow Brewing, and features a new rotation of trucks each week, as well as live music and craft vendors. Click here for more information.

For another spot to get your fill of food truck goodness, Food Truck Friday in Plaza Midwood takes place at Resident Culture Brewing Company. Click here for more information.

Food Truck Friday in South End is held at Sycamore Brewing. Click here for more information.

(WATCH: Mark Taylor on Main Street visits Mint Hill)