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Weekend fun, from ACC sports to beard awards

By Brittney Cason
Brittney Cason
Brittney Cason writes about nightlife for The Charlotte Observer.

Read her blog

The holiday parties have begun, and I’ve made a list that includes a few good ones this weekend. But check it twice – there are also options for parties that don’t have holiday themes.

Friday

ACC Fan Central at the EpiCentre (210 E. Trade St.): With performances by Florida State and Duke’s mascots, cheerleaders and bands, it’s a pep rally/party. I hope neither team is staying at the EpiCentre’s aloft hotel, because it’ll be tough to sleep through the rowdy revelry happening at the complex. 7-11 p.m. No cover. 704-688-5980.

Second String Santa at Silver Hammer Studios (817 Hamilton St., behind NC Music Factory): The 25th-anniversary edition of this holiday tradition, one of the biggest and best charity events in Charlotte. I’ll be hosting, so there will be a life-size elf there. Bring an unwrapped toy to donate; a lot of kids in Charlotte get to have Christmas because of this event! 8 p.m.-midnight. $20 with a toy donation, $40 without. www.secondstringsanta.org.

Level Charlotte’s Grand Opening Party (225 N. Caldwell St.): This new club features three levels of fun, but they’re all in “club level.” (Get it, Panthers fans?) A strict dress code will be enforced. 9 p.m.-2 a.m. No cover until midnight, or if you bring an unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots. 704-910-4754.

Saturday

Winter Wonderland at Phillips Place in South Park (6700 Phillips Place Court): Phillips Place transforms into a winter wonderland, complete with carriage rides, Dickens carolers and a visit from Santa. 1-4 p.m. Free, but guests are asked to bring an unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots. 704-906-2929.

Charlotte Checkers vs. the Rockford IceHogs at Time Warner Cable Arena (333 E. Trade St.): As Steve Smith said, “Ice up, son.” 7 p.m. $15 and up. 704-342-4423.

Beards BeCAUSE Grand Finale at Neighborhood Theatre (511 E. 35th St.): “No Shave November” started nine weeks ago for these follicle fighters against domestic violence, and this is the moment they’ve all been growing for: the best beard award ceremony. With live music from Chasing Pedestrians and Grown Up Avenger. 7:30 p.m. $10 donation at the door. www.beardsbecause.com.

Brittney Cason is a writer who talks for a living at CBS Radio mornings on WFNZ, nights on WSOC.
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