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...
▪ The U.S. National Whitewater Center’s concert season gets into full swing with this weekend’s three-day Tuck Fest. In its fourth year, the event is a combination of outdoor land and water sports; live music; and other promotions of the outdoor lifestyle. Music includes Keller Williams’ Grateful Grass, Butcher Brown, Nathaniel Ratcliff & the Night Sweats, and more. 4-11 p.m. Friday, 7 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, and 7:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Sunday. Free to spectators; upgrades available. – CD
▪ The Charlotte Jazz Festival had its big kick-off Thursday, but lots of live music is coming up, from Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Orchestra to vocalist and trumpeter Bria Skonberg, to Sammy Miller & the Congregation at the tent at Romare Bearden Park. The Westin’s Soco Bar hosts late-night jams and the festival closes Sunday afternoon with a Jazz Picnic in the Park. www.blumenthalarts.org. – CD
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▪ MerleFest kicked off Thursday with the Avett Brothers and Del McCoury Band – and both will join Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Leftover Salmon and James Taylor Friday on the campus of Wilkes Community College. Bela Fleck joins the lineup Saturday, with the Zac Brown Band and Marty Stuart finishing out the weekend Sunday. www.merlefest.org. – CD
▪ Comedian Dov Davidoff isn’t exactly a household name (his biggest claim to fame is a supporting role in Disney’s football movie “Invincible,” opposite Mark Wahlberg), but in stand-up circles, he’s revered. As the OC Weekly wrote last year: “Dov questions life via an onslaught of observational and scattered views in a voice and tone we’ve come to envy.” You can see what the fuss is about during shows at 7:30 and 9:45 p.m. (more shows Saturday) at The Comedy Zone. – TJ
▪ On the heels of his new album, “My Spirit Sister,” critically acclaimed singer-songwriter Joshua James visits Neighborhood Theatre at 8 p.m., leaving back in Utah the family he sings about on new songs like “Millie” (about having a second child, a daughter). – CD
▪ Take a road trip to Lake City, S.C. to explore the fifth annual ArtFields. More than 400 works will be on display through April 29, in venues from renovated warehouses to restaurants, galleries and more. You’ll see works by artists from all over the Southeast, including Charlotte-based Micah Cash, Arthur Brouthers, Barbara Ellis, Michele Hoffman, Chris Myers, Michelle Podgorski, Christian Price, Paige Robertson and Patricia Sabree. (And exhibitors have a chance to get life-changing award money: There’s a top prize of $50,000, a juried one of $25,000, two People’s Choice Awards at $12,500 each and more.) Accompanying events range from food and music to tours, and the finale/award ceremony is at 7:30 April 29. Admission’s free for most events. – LN
▪ Blues Traveler – the Grammy-winning outfit behind inescapable ’90s hits like “Run-Around” and “Hook” – headlines this year’s Moo and Brew Festival at the AvidXchange Music Factory Festival Grounds. The craft beer and burger-sampling fest doubles as a benefit for Second Harvest Food Bank and the Heartbright Foundation. Doors open at 2 p.m. for those with $35 general-admission tickets. – CD
▪ “Lass die guten Zeiten ruhen”: That’s German for “let the good times roll,” and it might come in handy at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery’s 7th annual Louisiana Spring Fest this weekend. Expect Mardi Gras beads in the Biergarten, Cajun and blue grass music and fresh boiled crawfish with your fresh brewed beer. – KP
▪ They say every dog has its day, and in this case, that day belongs to the annual Pet Palooza festival, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at Independence Park in Elizabeth. Scheduled highlights include a pet adoption area, live music from The Olde #7 Band, a beer garden and food trucks (for humans), microchipping (for pets) and dog contests. The day will kick off with a 2K fundraising walk benefitting the Humane Society of Charlotte. – TJ
▪ Raise a toast to the Wine Vault for the new University City Wine Fest. 2-6 p.m. around the lake and boardwalk at the Shoppes at University Place, with more than 100 wines from 25 wineries, plus live music and appetizers from area restaurants. Tickets are $35: www.universitycitywinefest.org. – KP
▪ Are you ready for some football? The 14th annual Miller Lite Weekend Warrior Flag Football Tournament – a non-contact event with four skill divisions for ages 21 and older – will be held on the Carolina Panthers’ practice fields (at Third and Cedar streets) over two days. Registration is closed for the tournament, but spectating is free and encouraged. 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m. and 2-5:30 p.m., with the championships from 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday. – TJ
▪ Who needs funnel cake when you have Crispy Shrimp and Grits? Carowinds kicks off its third annual Taste of the Carolinas, with special Carolinas-themed dishes, beer and wine tastings, chef demonstrations and shag dancing lessons. (Don’t worry, they’ll still have funnel cake.) Every Saturday and Sunday through May 14. – KP
▪ Charlotte Ballet opens a four-performance run of associate artistic director Sasha Janes’ adaptation of Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights,” the 1800s-set story of star-crossed lovers forced to live apart because of circumstance and prejudice. The show opens with a performance of Alonzo King’s “MAP,” the first ballet that president and artistic director Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux commissioned for Charlotte Ballet, 20 years ago. The first show is at 7:30 p.m. at Knight Theater. – TJ