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Weekend In Entertainment: Panthers Fan Fest, Joedance Film Festival & More!

Bank of America Stadium
Michael Tomsic

And just like that, it's August. A new school year is around the corner, but summer is still in full swing in the Queen City.

Joining All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey for another edition of Weekend In Entertainment is Emma Way editor of Charlotte Magazine. 

Mark Rumsey: Hi there Emma.

Emma Way: Hey Mark. How are you doing? 

Rumsey: Well, we've got a kickoff today actually over in Charlotte's Optimist Park neighborhood, right? A new venue has just opened there.

Way: Oh yeah. Today is the day finally. Optimist Hall is opening up in an old textile mill that’s actually 125 years old. There are going to be more spots opening up, restaurants, bars, retail locations, but for now, the first six are opening today. Bao and Broth, Honeysuckle Gelato, Pet Wants, sushi and a lot more is coming.

Rumsey: Okay, good deal. Friday night, Emma, Panthers fever is gonna be rising or maybe roaring its way back uptown at Bank of America Stadium. There's the Carolina Panthers Fan Fest. Emma tell us about it.

Way: Yeah. So this is a really fun, free event for fans. It happens annually just to kick-off pre-season and then obviously the regular season. So Friday night fans will enjoy performances from the Top Cats, Sir Purr, Black and Blue crew while watching the Panthers practice. So you'll get to see all the big names that you'd normally see but they're just practicing, getting ready for the pre-season. Doors open for this at 6 p.m. and fireworks will end the night at around 9:15.

Rumsey: Well, it is almost that time of year again. An annual film festival is back in Charlotte this weekend.

Way: Yes, celebrating 10 years is the Joedance Film Festival which is named after Joe Restaino, a cancer patient who died in 2010. Joedance is annual and they raise money for pediatric cancer and they're also featuring some local directors, producers, and writers in these films including a UNC Charlotte instructor, Rodney Stringfellow who will be presenting his film ‘Manhood.’

Rumsey: All right. Anything more about the range of films that will be offered there?

Way: Yeah. There are some full-length films and shorter dramas. The film fest will be running the entire weekend. So Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Rumsey: Okay. The Joedance Film Festival and the admission for that?

Way: $30 for the whole weekend. And that will take place at Charlotte Ballet Center for Dance in Fourth Ward. 

Rumsey: Excellent. Well, starting on Saturday there's a music festival back, but it’s more than just a music festival right? That’s at the U.S. National Whitewater Center?

Way: Definitely Confluence is in its first year it's a music festival and also a conference for music lovers and industry professionals to gather and talk about the music scene here in Charlotte. They're really highlighting some local artists at this festival. Nineteen to be exact with genres ranging from jazz to rock including one of my favorites Cyanca who is our best musician for Charlotte Magazine this year. There will be performances on Saturday and Sunday as well as panel discussions on both days.

Rumsey: All right some good stuff to get August underway. 

Way: Yeah, for sure.

Rumsey: Emma Way, editor of Charlotte Magazine thanks a lot.

Way: Thanks for having me, Mark. It's my pleasure.

Mark Rumsey grew up in Kansas and got his first radio job at age 17 in the town of Abilene, where he announced easy-listening music played from vinyl record albums.