Agenda Weekender: Fall is here. 105+ things to do in its first weekend, including Festival in the Park, Mecktoberfest and Pumpkin Fest

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September 22 marks the official beginning of fall – get door-to-door transportation to every seasonal fest this weekend with the help of Lyft.

Plus, get $5 off your first two Lyft rides using code LYFTWITHAGENDA.


FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 21

86. Mostly sunny. 20% chance of rain.

Food & Drink

Mecktoberfest at The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery: Their wildly popular seasonal brew, Mecktoberfest, is back on tap and they’re celebrating with a weekend-long festival featuring traditional food and music. Friday through Sunday. Free admission. Details.

Lobster Roll Friday at Carolina Meat & Fish Co.: Get your hands on a lobster roll with meat straight from Maine. Order in advance, as they often sell out early. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. $18. Details.

Cider Release at Red Clay Ciderworks: Get a taste of the popular chai-spiced pumpkin cider when it returns this weekend. 3-11 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Pop Up Wine Tasting at Bonterra: Try 11 favorite wines on the patio. 4-7 p.m. $11 (reservations recommended). Details.

Friday Nights at Camp North End: Unwind in the Boileryard with food, music and more. Dog- and kid-friendly. 5 p.m. Free. Details.

Black Food Truck Fridays at Cuzzo’s Cuisine: Meander between trucks to try seafood, soul-food, desserts and everything in between. 6 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Sabor Latino 2018 at Mint Museum Randolph: Experience the taste, history and tradition of Latin American cuisine from Chef Julian Grajales. Proceeds benefit Latin Americans Working for Achievement’s educational programs. 6-8 p.m. $45. Details.

Food Truck Friday Dilworth at 1324 East Boulevard: Enjoy dinner from a truck at this kid- and dog-friendly FTF. Outside drinks and coolers welcome. 6-10 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Beer Dinner at Corkbuzz: Indulge in this 4-course dinner that’s been specially paired with 6 beers from multiple craft breweries from across the country. 6:30-9 p.m. $75. Details.

Fermented + Fully Caffeinated Pairing Dinner at Thirsty Nomad Brewing: Benefitting the Bravo Alpha Foundation, this coffee-beer-cider-bourbon pairing dinner will see each beverage paired with a creation from Michael Beers of Tavern at Sunset Hill. Tickets include dinner and take-home beverages. 6:30-9:30 p.m. $40. Details.

End of Summer Luau at Imperial: Bust out your best Hawaiian gear and get down with themed music, food and drinks to say goodbye to summer. Best costume wins $150. 7 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Bubbly Fest at Suite: Enjoy a glass or two of champagne while you shop local businesses like Potts Chocolate, CharLIT Apparel and more. 9:30-11 p.m. $30. Details.

Fall Black Light Party at Whisky River: Celebrate the return of the season with mechanical bull rides, a balloon drop with cash prizes and dancing. 10 p.m.-2 a.m. RSVP online for free admission. Details.

Who’s Plaid at Lucky’s Bar and Arcade: Wear your worst golf attire to win cash and prizes, then enjoy enough beer and cocktail specials to forget what you had the guts to wear out in public. 10 p.m.-2 a.m. Free. Details.

Arts & Entertainment

Festival in the Park at Freedom Park: Back for its 54th year, the outdoor festival will include music, art and more, like face painting and DIY stations, for attendees to enjoy all weekend long. Friday (4-9:30 p.m.), Saturday (10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.) and Sunday (11 a.m.-6 p.m.). Free. Details.

Ayrsley Retro Horror Series at Ayrsley Grand Cinemas: Scare yourself silly with 6 weeks’ worth of classic horror films, including a 50th anniversary remaster of Night of the Living Dead on loan from the Museum of Modern Art. 7 and 9 p.m. nightly through November 11. $5 per film. Details.

Peter and the Starcatcher at Theatre Charlotte: The Tony Award-winning play, based on the story we all know, turns the tale of the miserable-orphan-turned-Peter-Pan on its head. Through September 29. $28. Details.

Perspective at Mint Museum Uptown: Experience firsthand the group’s breathtaking aerial performances as they dance on the building itself. Friday (5-8 p.m.) and Saturday (11 a.m.-2 p.m.). Free. Details.

In Tandem Opening Reception at Anne Neilson Fine Art: Take in the works of two artists focused on unique yet complimentary styles of painting seeking to explore color relationships. Can’t make it Friday? Don’t panic – the exhibition runs through October 19. 6-8 p.m. Free. Details.

Opera at the Market at 7th Street Public Market: Enjoy a pop-up performance from Opera Carolina while you eat and drink your way through the market. 6-8 p.m. Free. Details.

Haydini at Duke Energy Theater: See the Charlotte-based award-winning magician perform his illusions live. 8-9:30 p.m. $15-$20. Details.

Laugh at Lenny Boy at Lenny Boy Brewing Co.: The brewhouse will be transformed into a comedy club hosting some of the best comedians in the state. 8-10 p.m. $10. Details.

Just Fine: The Mary J. Blige Tribute Band at Jazz N Soul Music: Let this 7-piece band take you back to the early days of hip-hop soul with the sounds of Mary J. Blige. 9 p.m.-12 a.m. $14-$25. Details.

Experience

Dilworth Home Tour 2018 in Dilworth: Tour 7 gorgeous homes and gardens in one of Charlotte’s oldest and best home tours on this self-guided tour (free bicycles will be available from Charlotte B-Cycle). Plus, ticketholders will enjoy half-priced glasses of wine at Bonterra afterward. Friday (6-9 p.m.) and Saturday (10 a.m.-4 p.m.). $25-$30. Details.

Cirque Italia Gold Unit at Northlake Mall: See acts incorporating lasers, contortionists, a wheel of death and a 35,000-gallon water stage. Friday through Sunday (show times vary). $10-$50. Details.

Science on the Rocks: I Heart Science at Discovery Place Science: Get ready to complete plenty of hands-on science experiments like flavor tripping, gas balloon roulette and CSI, cocktail in hand. 5-9 p.m. $10-$12. Details.

Bechtler By Night at Bechtler Museum of Modern Art: Enjoy all the museum has to offer in a laidback setting with games, live entertainment, a bar and more. 5-10 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Star Wars Trivia at StrikeCity: Prove your loyalty to the original trilogy for a chance at prizes. 8-10 p.m. Free. Details.

Kids

Family Movie Night at Knights Stadium: Enjoy an in-stadium viewing of Despicable Me 3, popcorn in hand. Bring one canned food item for the Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina for admission. 6:30-8:30 p.m. Details.

Do Good

Adoption Event at Food Truck Friday Dilworth: Come meet your new best friend over dinner at this Carolina Big Hearts Big Barks Rescue meet-and-greet. 6-10 p.m. Free. Details.

A Night Out For Johnston at The Underground: Join the Johnston YMCA for a night of fundraising that includes a silent and live auction, heavy hors-d’oeuvres, drinks and a DJ. 6:30-10:30 p.m. Free. Details.

Shopping

Vintage Market Days of Charlotte at Park Expo & Conference Center: This upscale, vintage-inspired market will feature original art, antiques, decor, fashion, home goods and more. Friday through Sunday, 10 a.m. $5-$10. Details.

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

88. Mostly sunny. 20% chance of rain.

Food & Drink

Soulfood Vegan Tasting at Veltree: See what the new vegan restaurant is all about at this casual brunch. Saturday and Sunday, 1-4 p.m. $23-$39 (reservation required). Details.

South End Farmers and Artisans Market at Atherton: Grab a cup of coffee or glass of wine from your favorite Atherton vendors to enjoy while you ship and shop with a variety of local artisans and farmers selling everything from produce to dog food to soaps. 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Free admission. Details.

1 Year Anniversary at Bulgogi Box: Celebrate the first birthday of the restaurant, known for Korean-style BBQ dishes, with specials all day. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Grand Reopening at TCBY Berewick Town Center: Customers will receive their first three ounces free as a celebration of the yogurt shop’s return. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Free. Details.

2018 Great American Beer Festival Viewing Party at Blue Blaze Brewing: Watch the Denver-based ceremony live alongside other industry professionals and craft enthusiasts. Expect over 10 local beers on tap and live music post-ceremony. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Free. Details.

Flavors of Summer: Pepper Fest at Lenny Boy Brewing Co.: Explore the different uses of peppers in beer, kombucha and food with the help of Lenny Boy and on-site vendors like Queen City Kitchen and The Hunter’s Wife. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Oktoberfest Kick-Off at Bar Louie: Get the season jumpstarted with $3.50 Sam Adams and Angry Orchard drafts, 1/2-price Bavarian food and a Stein hoisting competition. 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Free admission. Details.

Beer Release at Birdsong Brewing Co.: Try the new O.P.P. Pineapple Pale Ale, made with fresh pineapple purée. 12-10 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Pumpkin Fest 2018 at Sycamore Brewing: Celebrate the return of fall with a lineup of seasonal beers, live music, food trucks, novelty t-shirts and vendors at this day-long celebration. 12-10 p.m. Free admission. Details.

OktoBEERfest at Catawba Brewing Company: Feel like you’re actually in Munich will small-batch German-style beer, themed food and live music. 2-8 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Arts & Entertainment

Loose Leaves Showcase at Duke Energy Theater: Experience firsthand the new and innovative works from the minds of local choreographers. 7:30-9:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. $12. Details.

Funny Side Up at The Comedy Zone: Enjoy a few glasses of champagne alongside the laughs you’ll have at this comedy brunch. 2 p.m. $10. Details.

Concerts on the Porch at School of Rock: This all-ages concert will feature student bands, local bands and touring bands. Food available for purchase. 5-8 p.m. $5. Details.

My Favorite Murder Live at Belk Theater: Get your true crime fix at a live recording of the hit podcast, hosted by Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark. 7-10 p.m. $39.50+. Details.

Crayzee Creative: The Artists’ Showcase at Stage Door Theater: See the works of four featured choreographers and then hear from them in a Q&A session afterward. 7:30 p.m. $10. Details.

The Muddy Turtle Talks Live at The Knight Gallery: Hear stories from west Charlotte natives told live and on stage. 7:30 p.m. Free. Details.

Bill Maher at Ovens Auditorium: See the Emmy-nominated comedian, political commentator and television host perform live. 8 p.m. $50-$125. Details.

Live Music at The Rabbit Hole: Enjoy sounds from four acts, including Drunk in a Dumpster and No Anger Control. 8 p.m.-2 a.m. $15. Details.

Experience

Serb Fest at St. Simeon, Serbian Orthodox Church: Celebrate and learn about Serbian culture through food, music, games and more. Saturday (10 a.m.-11 p.m.) and Sunday (9 a.m.-5 p.m.). Free. Details.

Charlotte Monarch Celebration at First Ward Park: Celebrate pollinators and wildlife with a pollinator parade, monarch tagging demonstration, garden tours, seed giveaways and more. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Free. Details.

A Day of Beauty at Graper Cosmetic Surgery: Get free mini-consults with doctors and discounts on Botox, skin care, injectables, CoolSculpting, scheduled procedures and more. There will also be up to $10,000 in door prizes, drinks, samples and swag for the first 100 guests. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Dog Wash and Adoption Event at Canine Café Charlotte: Support Lucky Labs Rescue and get your pup clean at the same time! Plus, you’ll have the chance to meet adoptable dogs while you’re there. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. $5/bath. Details.

Field Day on the Lawn at Piedmont Social House: Compete on your own or with a team in varying contests, including a huge tricycle race, giant darts and more for a chance at prizes. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Mid-Autumn Festival at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden: Celebrate Chinese tradition with cooking demonstrations, Tai Chi and Kung Fu demonstrations, food from Dumpling Girls and Sproutycakes and more. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Included in admission. Details.

Festival Of Lebanon at St. Matthew Catholic Church: Enjoy authentic, homemade Lebanese food, family-friendly activities and more. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Free. Details.

Charlotte Irish Fest at Tyber Creek Pub: Enjoy authentic music, dancing, food and more to raise money for an American-Irish Cultural Center in Charlotte. 1-11 p.m. $10. Details.

Get Out of the Pound! at Lucky Dog Bark & Brew Charlotte: Lucky Dog has teamed up with three local rescues for an afternoon of adoptable dogs, kissing booths, pet portraits, a four-legged corn maze, prizes for humans and more. 10% of bar sales will be donated. 2-6 p.m. Free admission. Details.

The Black Mecca Festival at Camp North End: This unique festival will feature musical acts, poetry readings, art, tech installations and more to explore throughout the day. 2-10 p.m. $15-$75. Details.

Meet & Greet at Legion Brewing: Get to know the loveable and adoptable Great Danes currently at Great Dane Friends of Ruff Love. 5-9 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Bearden Music Series at Romare Bearden Park: Enjoy a performance by Chubby Carrier and kick back with food and drinks available for purchase from the on-site vendors. 6-9 p.m. Free. Details.

Date Night: Comedy & Bowling at Victory Lane Karting: Compete in an hour of bowling before settling in to enjoy a show by The Comic Strip. Look for free cupcakes, raffles and more, too. 6-10 p.m. $50. Details.

Learn Things

Fall Open Houses at UNC Charlotte: Thinking of enrolling? Get to know the school through a full day of information, tours and face-to-face time with faculty, staff and students. Times vary. Free admission (registration required). Details.

Fitness

Race 13.1 Charlotte at Toringdon: Make your way along rolling hills and enjoy on-course entertainment as you run through some of the most beautiful spots in the city. 13.1 miles a little bit much? They’ve also got an 8K. 7 a.m. $43-$84. Details.

Charlotte Be The Match Walk+Run 2018 at University Research Park: Money raised from the event will help add donors to the marrow registry and help patients with medical bills. Get there early for a 5K, 1K and fundraising awards. 7:30-11 a.m. $15-$35. Details.

Flow Fest at The U.S. National Whitewater Center: The inaugural celebration will see a full day packed with 40+ yoga practices, wine, kombucha and more. 7 a.m.-10:30 p.m. $6 to park, activities a la carte. Details.

The 8th Annual Stiletto Sprint at SouthPark Mall: Walk, run or dash approximately 70 yards in your best stilettos to raise funds and awareness for ovarian cancer research at Levine Cancer Institute. Heels optional, all ages welcome. 8 a.m. $15-$30. Details.

1 Year Anniversary at Crossfit Mountain Island: Celebrate by helping raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation with a workout and post-practice drinks and food. Free (reservations encouraged). 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Free. Details.

Beers and Burpees at CrossFit Charlotte: This 8th annual event brings together 25 local gyms and over 1,000+ people to work out, drink beer and most importantly, raise money for the Dream on 3 Charity organization. Expect heats starting every 40 minutes, a NoDa Brewing Beer Garden, food trucks and more. 9 a.m.-6 p.m. $30-$140. Details.

Wild Vine Trail Race at The U.S. National Whitewater Center: Start Flow Fest off right with a 5K or half marathon along the trail system. 9:30 a.m. $30-$60. Details.

Yoga at Lenny Boy Brewing Co.: Admission earns each yogi their practice and a six-ounce pour of kombucha. 10 a.m. $5. Details.

Twerk That Asana at The Rabbit Hole: Twerk For Your Beer under the blacklight with a dance fitness and hip-hop yoga combo class followed by mimosas. 10-11:15 a.m. $10. Details.

Kids

Science Olympiad at Discovery Place Science: Families with kids of all ages will get the chance to solve a crime, explore prehistoric fossils, learn about natural phenomena and more. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Included in admission. Details.

Charlotte Kids Festival at 9100 Robert D. Snyder Road: Kid-designated zones to enjoy in between food truck stops include dancing, crafting, playing and learning. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free. Details.

5th Birthday Celebration at Flour Power Kids Cooking Studios Quail Corners: Let the kids be chefs for a day as they decorate a mini pizza and birthday cupcake before moving on to play games, watch demonstrations and more. 4-6 p.m. Free (registration required). Details.

Do Good

Invest in US at Community House Middle: Hear from a panel of experts on how to help change the fact that North Carolina is one of the only states without a recovery high school, then catch a screening of Generation Found to drive the point home. 12-3 p.m. Free. Details.

Rocktoberfest at The Fillmore: Support the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation with a night of live music, dancing, an auction, a full bar and food. 6:30-11:30 p.m. $60. Details.

David Britt “Singin’ For A Reason” Benefit with Laine Mansfield at Visulite Theatre: Hear the Charlotte-born singer-songwriter perform a concert benefiting the American Cancer Society. 7 p.m.-12 a.m. $25 in advance. Details.

Shopping

Fall Fashion Kickoff & Tent Clearance Sale at Julie’s Boutique: Get your wardrobe fall-ready with a mega sale that has deals like $25 off of a $50 purchase for the first 25 customers and a tent filled with $5-$12 racks. 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Free. Details.

SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 23

85. 60% chance of afternoon thunderstorms.

Food & Drink

Diva Drag Brunch at Dilworth Grille: Take a seat and enjoy an appearance by Buff Faye and DJ Magic Mike. Tickets include a gourmet buffet and access to the bar. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. $22.50. Details.

Brunch from a Truck at Catawba Brewing Co.: Fresh Med will be serving brunch in the parking lot while Catawba slings perfectly pairable mimosas and brews. 12-5 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Brunch at Red Clay Ciderworks: Recover from your Saturday night with donuts from Pepperbox, breakfast from The Breakfast Food Truck and a drink or two from the cidery. 2:30-4:30 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Football Watch Parties & Tailgates

NFL Football at Bank of Amerca Stadium: Cheer on our Panthers as they take on the Cincinnati Bengals at home. 1 p.m. $41+. Details.

Keep Pounding, Keep Partying at Graham St. Pub & Patio: Cheer on the Panthers with a special gameday menu that includes $5 Panthers shots. 10 a.m.-12 a.m. Free admission. Details.

Football, Burgers & Beer at 1st Ward Beverage Co.: Chow down on free hamburgers and hot dogs while you watch the Panthers take on the Bengals. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Panthers vs Cincinnati Tailgate at Grainger Hardware: Get ready for the game at this all-inclusive tailgate. No tickets, no worries – they’ll be broadcasting the game on TVs. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. $20-$40. Details.

Black & Blue Blaze Tailgate at Blue Blaze Brewing: Enjoy $10 pitchers, lawn games, an open grill and the game, shown on a 12-foot screen. 12:30-4:30 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Carolina Panthers Game Watch at StrikeCity: Watch the game on any of the 65+ TVs while you enjoy themed cocktails and drink specials. 1-4 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Dolphins vs. Raiders at Queen Park Social: Join the Charlotte Dolfans Club for a viewing party. 1-4 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Panthers vs. Bengals at Queen Park Social: Cheer on the Panthers as they take on the Bengals in Uptown. 1-4 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Sunday Ticket at Brewers at 4001 Yancey: Catch whatever game you’re looking for on one of the brewery’s 13 TV screens, showing NFL Sunday Ticket all day. 1-10 p.m. Free. Details.

Football Game Watch at Lucky’s Bar and Arcade: With 20 screens, there’s no shortage of space to watch your favorite during this Sunday’s lineup. 1-11 p.m. Free. Details.

Arts & Entertainment

Owl City at The Underground: See the electronic band on the Charlotte leg of their Cinematic tour. 8 p.m. $47-$86. Details.

Fitness

Spartan Strong Workout at Life Time Athletic: Sweat it out in this guided workout that blends HIIT, bodyweight, stretching and cardio exercises. Admission includes a t-shirt and food samples. 8-10 a.m. Free. Details.

NoDa Hop Yoga at NoDa Brewing Company: Admission includes an hour-long, all-levels flow and complimentary beer. 10:45-11:50 a.m. $5. Details.

Sunday Serenity Yoga at Blue Blaze Brewing: Admission gets each yogi the class and a 13-ounce beer. 11:15 a.m. $8. Details.

Ballet at the Bar at Legion Brewing: Experience the full body workout inspired by a basic ballet class. Admission includes class and a post-practice pint. 12-1 p.m. $7. Details.

BYOD: Dog Walking at NoDa Brewing Company: Stretch those four legs on this 1-mile route, then stick around for drinks, prizes and more. 12-1 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Sunday Runday at NoDa Brewing Company: Enjoy a leisurely 1-, 3- or 5-mile run through the neighborhood before relaxing with a beer in the taproom. 12-3 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Urban Zen In-House Yoga Retreat at Okra: Escape for a retreat without having to travel and only at a fraction of the price with a workshop that includes practices in Tai-Chi, yoga, QiGong and more. Admission includes a bag of chakra-balancing gemstones. 1-4 p.m. $55 in advance. Details.

Skip & Sip Sunday Funday at Brewers at 4001 Yancey: Join Skipper for a 1.5-mile guided dog walk that starts and ends at Brewers at 4001 Yancey. Hang out afterward for beer, food and live music. 3 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Cyclobots Road Ride at Wooden Robot Brewery: This ride is best for intermediate riders, as it covers 24 miles at an average speed of 15-17 M.P.H. 5-8 p.m. Free admission. Details.

Kids

American Girl Visit at Discovery Place Science: Enjoy lunch at the SouthPark store before heading to Discovery Place Science for a class inspired by Luciana, the Girl of the Year 2018. 12:30-4:30 p.m. $45 (transportation not included). Details.

Kids Crafternoon at the Gardens at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden: In this guided instruction, kids will learn how to press flowers and use them to make collages. Ages 5+. 1-2 p.m. $10 (registration required). Details.

ON THE AGENDA

South End Fall Craft Crawl in South End: Experience the best in craft beer that South End has to offer on this afternoon adventure featuring door-to-door transportation on a historic trolley. October 6.

Ayrsley Fall Fest at Town of Ayrsley Event Lawn: Embrace all that is fall with local breweries, craft vendors, a farmers market, live music, a petting zoo and more. October 13.

Verse & Vino at Charlotte Convention Center: Enjoy an evening of food, wine and conversation with five New York Times best-selling authors in support of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library Foundation. November 1.

See all the upcoming events here.

Header photo of Sycamore’s Pumpkin Fest 2017 via Facebook

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Kylie Moore
Writer doubling as a travel, wine, and Oxford Comma enthusiast.