America’s Independence Day is upon us with the holiday tomorrow and related festivities planned through the weekend. And we're delivering our preview of the weekend in entertainment a day early to help you make some plans for celebrating.
Mark Rumsey: Joining me is Emma Way, editor of Charlotte magazine. Welcome back, Emma.
Emma Way: Thanks so much for having me.
Rumsey: If folks just can't wait for a dose of fireworks and some other July 4th holiday festivities they can get a jump on things tonight at the U.S. National Whitewater Center right?
Way: That's right. So drive out to the whitewater rafting center on tonight and tomorrow night. Fireworks start at 9:30 p.m. You can also look forward to yoga, music, you know, the typical things to expect at the whitewater rafting center and of course admission is free except for parking, which is $6.
Rumsey: Okay. So two nights at the Whitewater Center. Starting tonight, of course, tomorrow on the 4th we can expect crowds in uptown Charlotte for a big annual celebration returning again this year - Skyshow 2019. What are some highlights there?
Way: It's always a good time uptown, everyone bringing their picnic blanket sitting out at Romare Bearden Park. Or going to the baseball game before the big fireworks show after the game wraps up, so you can see the fireworks from Romare Bearden Park, maybe from the sidewalk or rooftops of parking garages you never know. You can see them from all over the city.
Rumsey: Yeah, that's a good point. There can be some navigational challenges down there.
Way: That's for sure with all the food trucks, the people around with kids and playing Frisbee on the lawn, you know, it can be pretty crowded. So I would recommend if you can't get a spot early enough, or put down your picnic blanket early enough, head on out to the rooftop of a parking garage even a bridge from a little bit outside of the town and also maybe take the light rail downtown instead of trying to drive through all that traffic.
Rumsey: Well, Emma for a somewhat different feel people might want to consider a Friday event at Petra's in Plaza Midwood. Can you tell us about that one?
Way: Petras is a really unique spot in Plaza Midwood. There's obviously the music venue, but there's also an art gallery in there so you can kind of get a lot of culture in one small little venue. On Friday they're going to be launching their July show which is just a couple of local artists including one of my own colleagues, Melissa Stutts. Her work is encaustics. It's actually melted wax with pigments and it sort of is an art form that really goes with the flow because you never know what's going to happen when you light something on fire. So there are going to be some really unique pieces and of course some live music as well in the room adjoining by Sweat Transfer and a few other bands, as well. That's $7 the day of.
Rumsey: Well we're getting a lot of variety in the options for the holiday weekend here and another strand of that is the NoDa Cider Crawl.
Way: Yeah, for sure. I mean, everyone talks about beer here but there's actually a pretty vibrant cider industry as well. So NoDa is really embracing that. You can go to a couple of different local businesses and bounce around, try some different cider from all across the state. A couple of highlights are Protagonists, one of the newer breweries in town, they have four North Carolina ciders on tap, Rhino Market is offering $1 off all their ciders. NoDa Company, one of my personal favorites, they have cider Sangria, which sounds really good. And there's just a bunch of other participating places you can sort of choose where you want to go, make your own adventure.
Rumsey: All right Emma. I know this is just a starter list for the planned events over the holiday weekend not to mention just good old fashioned family and neighborhood picnics and gatherings, cookouts and the like. So the summer heat is on. Should be a good weekend.
Way: Yeah. Not to mention pig picking and barbecue. There's so much to look forward to.
Rumsey: Absolutely. Emma Way, editor of Charlotte magazine. Thanks a lot. And Happy Fourth to you.
Way: Yeah and happy Fourth of July to you, too.