Please submit your event information online. Go to events.charlotteobserver.com and click on “Add Event.” The submission deadline for print is two weeks in advance of the event date.
Charlotte Pride Band’s Winter Concert:
The Charlotte Pride Band presents its annual free winter concert, featuring the band’s brass and woodwind ensembles. The groups will perform traditional holiday music as well as other selections arranged for small instrumental groups. The band asks audience members to bring one or more playthings and games to donate. For suggestions please see www.facebook.com/events/288408911554309/. Free. Temple Beth El, 5101 Providence Road, Charlotte. 704-366-1948. www.beth-el.com. 3-5 p.m. Dec. 18.
12th Annual Puppies for Patients:
Join Community Blood Center of the Carolinas for the 12th Annual ’Puppies for Patients’ program running through Dec. 31. Donors who give blood during this time will be able to sign a tag that will then be attached to a stuffed toy puppy and delivered to children in area hospitals and care facilities during the holidays. To sign up, visit www.cbcc.us or call 704-972-4700. Free. Community Blood Center of the Carolinas, 4447 S. Blvd., Charlotte. 704-972-4700. www.cbcc.us. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 14. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 15. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 16. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 19. 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Dec. 20.
Learn to Square Dance:
Join us on Thursday nights. $5. Baker’s Place, 2843 Williams Road, Matthews. 704-576-0318. 7-9 p.m. Dec. 15.
The 15-minute presentation begins at 6 p.m. and repeats at 7 p.m. This is a neighborhood tradition, telling of the timeless Christmas birth, through the acting of our children and youth, and enhanced with live animals. Bring blankets and lawn chairs. Quail Hollow Presbyterian Church, 8801 Park Road, Charlotte. 704-554-5714. www.qhpc.org. 6-6:15 p.m., 7-7:15 p.m. Dec. 17.
David Shannon Run:
For the fifth year in a row, Myers Park High School will host the David Shannon Run, a 5K race and mile-long fun run, to help increase awareness surrounding the dangers of underage drinking and alcohol abuse. Proceeds support the David Shannon Scholarship Fund. Runners can register at racesonline.com and keyword “David” or visit https://racesonline.com/events/david-shannon-run to register. Registration is $25 for the 5K and $15 for the fun-run, or $30 for the 5K with a T-shirt and $20 for the fun-run with a T-shirt. You can also register the day of at the cross country course. Myers Park High School, 2400 Colony Road, Charlotte. 704-343-5800. pages.cms.k12.nc.us/mphs/. 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Dec. 17.
Join us to make a variety of holiday crafts. Free. James K. Polk State Historic Site, 12031 Lancaster Highway, Pineville. 704-889-7145. www.nchistoricsites.org. 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Dec. 17.
Native to North Carolina: Trees in Winter:
Just what is dormancy, anyway? Why do trees shed their leaves? Join us for a discussion on trees native to North Carolina and learn what’s going on beneath the soil. Dress for the elements as we will be outside and will get our hands dirty. Free. McDowell Nature Center & Preserve, 15222 York Road, Charlotte. 704-588-5224. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 3:45-4:30 p.m. Dec. 14.
Full Moon Hike:
Ever been in the woods at night? Join McDowell Nature staff as we explore the park during a moon lit evening. Registration required. Please wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes and dress appropriately for the weather. We will be hiking approximately 2 miles on uneven terrain. Please bring a water bottle. Free. McDowell Nature Center & Preserve, 15222 York Road, Charlotte. 704-588-5224. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 6-7:30 p.m. Dec. 14.
Preschool Bookclub at the Carolina Raptor Center:
Come and play in our new Nature Playground and read a nature-based book with one of our staff. We’ll bring out feathers and other props to help tell the story. Your chicks will have a great time connecting with nature and learning about birds. Outdoors weather permitting otherwise inside. 3 and younger free; 4 and 5 year olds free with paid admission to the Raptor Trail. Carolina Raptor Center, 6000 Sample Road, Huntersville. 704-875-6521. www.carolinaraptorcenter.org. 11-11:30 a.m. Dec. 15.
Off-Trail Adventure Hike:
Uncover the secrets of the preserve that are not accessible by trails. Join our Outdoor Recreation staff as we explore features that are only accessible off-trail. Come prepared to “bushwhack” with long pants, sturdy waterproof shoes and an adventurous spirit. Registration required. Please wear sturdy, waterproof closed-toe shoes and dress appropriately for the weather. We will be hiking approximately 3 miles on uneven terrain. Please bring a water bottle. Free. McDowell Nature Center & Preserve, 15222 York Road, Charlotte. 704-588-5224. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 1-3 p.m. Dec. 16.
Get CRAFTY: Upcycled Winter:
Stop by between 2:30pm and 4:30pm to create a nature-inspired upcycled winter craft to take home. Dress to get messy! Free. McDowell Nature Center & Preserve, 15222 York Road, Charlotte. 704-588-5224. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 2:30-4:30 p.m. Dec. 17.
Want to have fun while learning a few birds and their calls? This twist on bingo is sure to please bird lovers of all ages. Must call 980-314-1119 to register. Ages 6 and older. Free. Reedy Creek Nature Center & Preserve, 2900 Rocky River Road, Charlotte. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 2-3:30 p.m. Dec. 17.
Wildcraft - Twig Stars:
Stars are often associated with winter traditions. Most likely because the nights are longer and the skies are clearer in the winter. Join us as we craft stars from sticks. These make wonderful natural decorations. Must call 980-314-1119 to register .Ages 6 and older. Free. Reedy Creek Nature Center & Preserve, 2900 Rocky River Road, Charlotte. 980-314-1119. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 2-3 p.m. Dec. 18.
Nature Story Corner:
Settle in and get comfortable and read a variety of nature based stories. Stories may be accompanied by puppets and audience participation as you learn about the wonders of nature. After the story they will hike into the forest to do a themed activity based on the story. Must call 980-314-1119 to register.Ages 3 to 6Free10-11am Free. Reedy Creek Nature Center & Preserve, 2900 Rocky River Road, Charlotte. 980-314-1119. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 10-11 a.m. Dec. 19.
Discover the McDowell Nature Preserve with others in search of hidden treasure a winter surprise! This guided geocache program for newbies and pros alike, will teach participants how to use a geocache and discover caches around the preserve. Registration required. Please wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes and dress appropriately for the weather. We will be hiking approximately 2-3 miles on uneven terrain. Please bring a water bottle. Free. McDowell Nature Center & Preserve, 15222 York Road, Charlotte. 704-588-5224. charmeck.org/Departments/Park+and+Rec/Inside+The+Department/Divisions/Stewardship+Services. 3-4:30 p.m. Dec. 20.
Talks & meetings
GriefShare-Carmel Baptist Church:
It hurts to lose someone. Have you lost someone you love? Don’t go through the grieving process alone! We are offering a GriefShare small group Bible study on Wednesday evenings starting September 14th at 6:15 pm in the Conference Room next to the Counseling Center.GriefShare is a friendly, caring group of people who will walk alongside you through one of life’s most difficult experiences. Please contact David Dixon at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are planning to attend. There is a $15 cost to which covers the GriefShare Workbook. 15.00. Carmel Baptist Church, 1145 Pineville-Matthews Road, Matthews. 6:15 p.m. Dec. 14.
Red Boot Coalition Meeting:
Weekly, one-hour meetings, where participants practice listening without an agenda and sharing openly with one another. Participants will then take these skills out into the world to create more constructive leadership. Free. theredbootcoalition.org. Another Broken Egg, 3920 Sharon Road, Charlotte. 980-207-2582. www.anotherbrokenegg.com. 7:15 a.m.-8:15 a.m. Dec. 16.
Emotions Anonymous Meeting:
12-Step group for emotional instability. Free. Free. www.namilexington.org/support/family-support-groups/. Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, 3307 Rea Road, Charlotte. 704-364-1234. 7-8 p.m. Dec. 19.
Job Search Support Group:
Christians in Career Transition (CICT) is a ministry providing support for those out of work, about to be and/or under-employed. Learn the proper methods for a successful job search and how to overcome issues. Meet at St. Matthew Church ’s New Life Center building in Room 132 for two hours of dialogue on the subject. No cost and no reservation needed. For more info, contact Jack Rueckel at 704-341-8449. Free. St. Matthew Catholic Church, 8015 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy., Charlotte. www.stmatthewcatholic.org. 7-9 p.m. Dec. 19.
Caregiver Support Group - Alzheimer’s and Dementia:
Come to our facilitated support group to get emotional support, make new friends, address concerns and share the unique experiences of being a caregiver for someone with dementia. RSVP requested, 704/909-2070. Care for loved ones is available during the meeting with advance notice. Bring your own lunch; beverages are provided. Free, RSVP requested. The Ivey Memory Wellness Day Center, 6030 Park S. Drive, Charlotte. 704-909-2070. www.theivey.com. 12-1:15 p.m. Dec. 20.
Kim Keever & Felicia van Bork:
Large-scale photographs by Kim Keever, who meticulously constructs miniature topographies in a 200-gallon tank, which he fills with water and brings to life with colored lights and the dispersal of pigment. Monotype collages by Felicia van Bork, which she assembles from torn and cut pieces of her own monotype prints. Free admission. Jerald Melberg Gallery, 625 S. Sharon Amity Road, Charlotte. 704-365-3000. www.jeraldmelberg.com. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 14. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 15. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 16. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 17. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 19. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 20.
John Huneycutt ‘Silver Wings Wet Plate Portraits’:
Photography by 2015’s Best of Show Winner at Charlotte Fine Art Gallery through Dec. 16. Charlotte Fine Art Gallery, 7510 Pineville-Matthews Road, Charlotte. 704-541-0741. www.charlottefineart.com. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Dec. 14.
Beginning Watercolor class:
This class especially geared to beginning watercolor artists will begin with the basics of paper, paint, brushes and what happens when we work with water. Students will receive a combination each week of demonstration time and one-on-one assistance. New projects begin every few weeks. This class will be ongoing on Wednesday mornings. $125 per month. Nancy Couick Studios and Gallery, 10100 Park Cedar Drive, Charlotte. 704-541-6944. www.nancycouick.com. 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Dec. 14.
Small Works for Gift Giving:
All works available for purchase. Exhibit is free and all ages. See website for gallery hours. Charlotte Fine Art Gallery, 7510 Pineville-Matthews Road, Charlotte. 704-541-0741. www.charlottefineart.com. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Dec. 14.
Escort Your Little Elf, toddler — preschool:
Accompany your child(ren) to paint and be-dazzle to their heart’s content creating one-of-a-kind masterpieces. Projects and materials will be geared toward children age 18 months - preschool. All children must be accompanied by an adult (one adult can accompany up to three children but a 1:1 ratio is suggested). $50. Small Hands Big Art, 8025 Ardrey Kell Road, Charlotte. 704-246-8271. www.smallhandsbigart.com. 1:30-3:30 p.m. Dec. 16.
Handmade Gift Workshop, ages 5-14:
Artists rotate thru several unique art stations, creating one-of-a-kind handmade gifts. Advanced registration required. Visit www.smallhandsbigart.com. $50. Small Hands Big Art, 8025 Ardrey Kell Road, Charlotte. 704-246-8271. www.smallhandsbigart.com. 4-5:30 p.m. Dec. 16.
Handmade Gift Pajama-rama, ages 5-14:
Artists decked out out in their festive holiday Jim Jams (that are OK to get a little messy) will rotate through several art stations, creating one-of-a-kind handmade gifts. $45. Small Hands Big Art, 8025 Ardrey Kell Road, Charlotte. 704-246-8271. www.smallhandsbigart.com. 6-7 p.m. Dec. 16.
Holiday workshop, ages 5-14:
All Aboard! Pack your bags and get ready for a magical trip aboard the Polar Express! We’ll be creating original art inspired by this magical story, all of which will be gift-giving worthy. $45. Small Hands Big Art, 8025 Ardrey Kell Road, Charlotte. 704-246-8271. www.smallhandsbigart.com. 1:30-3 p.m., 3:30-5 p.m. Dec. 17.