See you this September

There are so many festivals in September, maybe we should rename the month Festember. While we work to get that proclamation pushed through, here's a guide to what's going on.OLIVIA FORTSON


Matthews Alive!: This is your last day to take in this annual four-day Labor Day weekend festival. There are arts and crafts, food vendors, music, carnival rides and a children's area. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Trade and McDowell streets in downtown Matthews. Free. www.matthewsalive.org.


Food Lion AutoFair: About 120,000 car aficionados are expected to attend this show filled with displays from 50 car clubs, car part vendors and auto auctions. 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. Lowe's Motor Speedway, $10, free for 12 and younger accompanied by an adult; parking, $5. www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.

Yiasou Greek Festival: Learn about Greek culture through music, dance, exhibits and best of all, the fabulous food – including famous pastries. 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday; noon- 8p.m. Sunday. Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 600 East Blvd. $2, free for 12 and younger accompanied by an adult. 704-334-4771; www.yiasoufestival.org.


Roman Army Festival: Held in conjunction with Discovery Place's “A Day in Pompeii” exhibit, it has mock gladiator battles, a chance for kids to “train” with a soldier, military drills and a marketplace selling Roman clothing, weapons, food and souvenirs. Noon-6 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. Fourth Ward Park, 301 N. Poplar St. Free. 704-372-6261; www.discoveryplace.org.


Charlotte Literary Festival: A full day of author appearances ranging from femme fatale Karrine Steffans (“The Vixen Diaries”) and Omar Tyree (“Flyy Girl”) to motivational speakers including former Carolina Panther Mike Minter and Grammy-winning R&B singer Stephanie Mills (“Never Knew Love Like This Before”). 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Charlotte Convention Center, 501 S. College St. $10, free for 10 and younger. 704-522-6500; www.charlotteliteraryfestival.com.


Festival of India: Join in as the Asian-Indian community celebrates its culture with dance performances, music, exhibits, food and demonstrations including how to wear a sari. Noon-7 p.m. Belk Theater, 130 N. Tryon St. $5 (includes admission both days), free for 10 and younger. www.indiafestival.net.

Sept. 12-13

Blues, Brews & BBQ: Indulge in barbecue, sip beer, listen to blues music and watch the popular pig races as national teams compete for a spot to the Memphis in May Championship. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Tryon Street between Sixth and 11th streets. Free admission. www.bluesbrewsandbbq.com.

Sept. 13

Bank of America Sunset Jazz Festival: Bring a picnic and a lawn chair or blanket to listen to a lineup featuring Ron Brendle, Michael Porter, Sweet Dreams and the Fuzz Band. 2:30-9:30 p.m. Symphony Park at SouthPark, 4400 Sharon Road. Free. www.charlottesunsetjazzfestival.com.

Whitewater Festival: Learn about all the activities offered at the center. There'll be food, music and children's activities. 9 a.m.-10 p.m. U.S. National Whitewater Center, 820 Hawfield Road. Free; parking is $5. 704-391-3900; www.usnwc.org.

Catawba Riverfest: Watch canoe and kayak competitions while listening to music, enjoying food from vendors and learning more about the Catawba River. 10a.m.-3 p.m. Bud Geitner Rotary Park, 2035 12th St. Drive NW, Hickory. Free. www.heritagealliance.org.

Sept. 18-21

Festival in the Park: With more than 150 artists demonstrating and selling their works, plus children's activities, food vendors and several entertainment stages, it's no wonder this is one of Charlotte longest running and most popular festivals. 6-9 p.m. Sept. 18; 4-9 p.m. Sept. 19; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sept. 20; and 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sept. 21. Freedom Park, 1900 East Blvd. Free. www.festivalinthepark.org.

Sept. 25-28

Charlotte Film Festival: Be the first to see some undiscovered talent during this third annual event that screens more than 50 films over four days. 4-9 p.m. Sept. 25; 10 a.m.-8:30 p.m. Sept. 26; 9:30 a.m.-8 p.m. Sept. 27; and noon-6 p.m. Sept. 28. Screenings at various venues. Schedule and ticket prices: www.charlottefilmfestival.org.

Sept. 26-27

Charlotte Shout Culinary Arts Experience: This celebration of art, music and food showcases celebrity chefs – including hottie Australian Curtis Stone from the TV show “Take Home Chef” – cooking “rock star style” on a main stage. Johnson & Wales University campus, 801 W. Trade St. Events, times and prices: www.charlotteshout.com.

Sept. 27

Kamitfest: Health lectures, vegetarian food, entertainment and more. Keynote speaker is Dr. Ra Un Nefer Amen, a specialist in African spirituality and holistic medicine. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Kamit Natural Foods, 2719 Tuckaseegee Road. The festival is free; the lecture is $10 ($15 at the door). 704-339-0038.

Oktoberfest: Sample craft-brewed beers from 300 breweries while listening to a lineup of music that includes Southern Culture on the Skids, all in an effort to raise money for charities ($50,000 was raised last year). 2-7 p.m. Memorial Stadium, Kings Drive and Seventh Street. $35 and $50; $20 for designated drivers. www.charlotteoktoberfest.com.

International Festival: You'll feel as if you spent a day traveling around the world by experiencing the different cultures represented through food, music, dance, art and exhibits. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Barnhardt Student Activity Center at UNC Charlotte. Free. http://ifest/uncc.edu/.

ArtFest of Matthews: A juried art show that also gives children a chance to participate in a hands-on art area. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Matthews Station Street, Matthews. Free. 704-847-3649; www.matthewschamber.com.

Sept. 27-28

Fall Family Festival: Children's activities, live music and dance performances are all part of this celebration of the garden's new butterfly display in the Orchid Conservatory. More than 1,000 butterflies will flutter around visitors. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. both days. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 S. New Hope Road, Belmont. $10, $9 for 60 and older, $5 for 4-12. 704-829-1252; www.dsbg.org.

Sept. 28

Latino Festival: A showcase of Latin food, music and culture. 2-4 p.m. Huntersville Elementary School, 200 Gilead Road, Huntersville. Free. www.huntersville.org.