What is there to do in Charlotte this weekend? Here’s our experts’ picks on everything from entertainment – movies to music to theater – to food and wine, beer and restaurants. And shopping, of course...
▪ Festival in the Park brings 200 artists and exhibitors and numerous entertainers on six stages to this family-friendly tradition at Freedom Park. The free three-day festival includes children’s activities, rides, magicians, aerialists, clowns, vendors, arts and crafts, and live music including world music day on Saturday and a tribute to the recently shuttered Double Door Inn featuring the club’s Monday Night Allstars, Gigi Dover and others on Sunday. www.festivalinthepark.org.
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▪ The week-long Charlotte Film Festival kicks off today at Ayrsley Grand Cinemas with “My Friend Dahmer” – a pre-crime biopic about a teen Jeffrey Dahmer starring former Disney star Ross Lynch. Other films include “Live at the Double Door Inn,” the documentary about the aforementioned Charlotte blues club, which screens Saturday and is followed by a panel discussion and performance by Lenny Federal.
▪ Carolina-based, award winning Swiss bluegrass trio the Kruger Brothers hosts its third annual Carolina in the Fall music festival this Friday and Saturday m the band’s adopted home of Wilkesboro. Performers include Ricky Skaggs, Carolinians Darin and Brooke Aldridge. www.carolinainthefall.org
▪ Attend the dedication of Spiral Odyssey, a sculpture by Richard Hunt, at Romare Bearden Park at 10 a.m. This nearly 30-foot-tall artwork is formed of stainless steel tendrils that swirl and reach for the sky. Hunt and Bearden were friends and colleagues and shared the distinction of being the first two African-American artists to have solo exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in 1971. Hunt will be present for the dedication of the sculpture.
▪ Reptiles, geckos, spiders, frogs, and other small exotic creatures converge on Cabarrus Arena Saturday and Sunday for Repticon Exotic Animal and Reptile Expo. Fans of iguanas and invertebrates can learn more about them and their slithering, slinking cousins during daily seminars, shop for your family pet, or find a new one. $10-$12 adults, $5 children age 5 to 12, ages 4 and younger free. http://repticon.com/north-carolina/charlotte/
▪ The Charlotte Civic Orchestra presents the “New World Symphony” by Antonin Dvorak plus musical highlights from the musical “My Fair Lady” at River Hills Community Church.
▪ Napa Valley’s 45-year-old family-owned Caymus Vineyards’ renowned Cabernet Sauvignon caps off the five-course wine dinner at Foxcroft Wine Co. Dilworth. Chef Justin Solomon’s menu starts with housemade ricotta with tapenade and tomato preserves followed by lobster rolls, braised beef cheeks with glazed root veggies and more. $75. 7 p.m. Reservations: 704-602-2133.
▪ The 20th-anniversary tour of Pulitzer Prize- and Tony-winning rock musical “Rent” marks the return of the pioneering production to Belk Theater for a six-day, eight-show run. $25 to $75. www.blumenthalarts.org
▪ Kings of Leon proves yet again on the hit-packed Walls Tour that it’s one of few bands making new music for fans of big arena rock shows in the tradition of U2 and Tom Petty. It kicks off the latest leg with Dawes at PNC Music Pavilion.
▪ Expect old favorites along with cuts from the new BT-N-H album “New Waves,” when one of the mid-’90s’ most original rap groups, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony comes to Neighborhood Theatre. 8 p.m.
▪ NoDa Brewing Company is helping ring in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with its sixth annual Pink Pint Night. Head brewer Chad Henderson created an exclusive pink beer and although the event is free, donations are encouraged. All proceeds from silent auctions and merchandise sales fund mammograms for local uninsured women. 4 to 8:30 p.m. with live music and food trucks. www.charlotteradiology.com/pink-pint-night.cfm.