10 a.m.-6:15 p.m. Monday. Tryon Street, between Stonewall and Trade streets. charlottein2012.com
Charlotte will usher in the Democratic National Convention with the family-friendly Carolina Fest. Headliner James Taylor performs on the Main Stage at Trade and Tryon, along with Jeff Bridges and the Abiders and Janelle Monae. Local and regional acts will entertain on the Carolina Stage at Levine Avenue of the Arts. Youth activities, including games, interactive exhibits, arts and crafts, fitness and healthy eating activities, will be on The Green. In addition, the Bechtler, Mint and Gantt Center will offer free admission. Nearby Discovery Place and NASCAR Hall of Fame will have half-price admission, and Levine Museum of the New South will have a discounted admission of $5. Check the website for the entertainment schedule.
Labor Day Parade
10 a.m. Monday. Pearl Street Park to Marshall Park. 704-877-6916. charlottelabordayparade.shutterfly.com
Charlotte’s annual Labor Day Parade will feature marching bands, labor organizations, political candidates and community groups. It starts at Pearl Street Park (on Baxter Street near South Kings Drive) and proceeds to Baxter, McDowell, Stonewall, South Caldwell and Third streets, ending at Marshall Park uptown.
Yard Art Day
Monday. Many locations. yardartday.org
Artists all across the Charlotte region will adorn their front yards Monday with their artistic creations. This grassroots event has grown to include hundreds of participants. If you want to learn how to participate (you don’t have to be a professional artist; your contribution can be as simple as you’d like), see some examples or learn how to find participating locations, visit the website.
Labor Day Celebration
4 p.m. Saturday. U.S. National Whitewater Center, 5000 Whitewater Center Parkway. 704-391-3900. http://bit.ly/O63hXk
Three live bands – Annabelle’s Curse, Megafaun and Pseudo Blue – will start the celebration at 4 p.m. Fireworks begin at dark. Entry into event is free, but parking is $5.
Experience S.C. Festival
4-9 p.m. Saturday. East Main Street, Rock Hill. onlyinoldtown.com
Entertainment includes beach music, R&B, gospel music, Catawba Indian Nation drum and dance. Satisfy your culinary cravings with fried fish, barbecue, fried chicken and turkey, sausage gumbo, po’ boy sandwiches, corn bread, peach cobbler and red velvet cake, along with S.C. craft beers and Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka. Shop for Gullah sweetgrass baskets and paintings. South Carolina authors will take part in a literary corner.
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Jody Mace runs CharlotteontheCheap.com and is a member of the Charlotte News Alliance, a network of hyperlocal websites.