Going out in Charlotte doesn't have to be expensive. In fact, to prove that statement, we've compiled a list of cheap things to do in the Q.C. this weekend. These events may vary, but they're all entertaining and they won't break your bank (piggy banks excluded).Robot Johnson and Mon Frere: Sketch Comedy Double Bill at UpStage: The longtime Charlotte-based sketch act Robot Johnson performs with the Greensboro troupe Mon Frere. Try to take in both shows and be prepared to laugh yourself silly. There's karaoke after the sets, too. $7 per show; $12 for both acts. May 9-10, 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. UpStage, 3306 N. Davidson St., Suite C. 704-430-4821. www.upstagenoda.com.
Grand Opening at FuManChu Cupcakes: Foodies and lovers of sweet goodness take note: It's the grand opening of FuManChu Cupcakes. To celebrate, artist Jon Norris will be painting live and there will be art on display and for sale by Christina Mc, Mark Doepker, Beth Jackson and Brian Rumping. Live music by ScottBox and other local musicians, too. Free admission. May 10, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. FuManChu Cupcakes, 826 Lamar Ave.
WYKAU Live! The Experience at Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture: Test your knowledge of African American history at WYKAU Live. The event uses the trivia game, WYKAU WAM (What You Know About Us We All Matter, as a source of both fun and brain work. There will also be a comedy show, music by DJ Double D, hors d'oeuvres, and a cash bar. $5-$8. May 10, 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture, 551 S. Tryon St. www.eventbrite.com.
Carolina Panthers Draft Party at Hickory Tavern: Indoor and outdoor TVs will broadcast the NFL Draft and there will be activities throughout the day. There's family-friendly stuff (face painting, a bounce house, and more) and adult fun, including a Panthers Pride costume contest, a cornhole tournament, and appearances by both current and former Panthers players. Bring three non-perishable food items or donate $3 to Second Harvest Food Bank and you'll be entered into a raffle for a chance to win Panthers gear. Free admission. May 10, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Hickory Tavern, 9010 Harris Corners Parkway. 704-921-4466. www.thehickorytavern.com.
Lake Norman Fine Art Festival at Birkdale Village: The annual Lake Norman Fine Art Festival is fun whether you browse or buy. Held outside in Birkdale Village there is plenty of art - paintings, photography, sculptures, jewelry, ceramics and more - to appreciate. Most of the artists are also attending, so you can chat them up and ask questions about the artwork. Free admission. May 10, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; May 11, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Birkdale Village, 8712 Lindolm Drive.
Mother's Day at the Garden at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden: The first 250 moms to visit each day will receive a free potted plant courtesy of Roundtree Garden Center. There's also hourly yoga sessions (starting at 10 a.m.) in the White Garden there will be a wine walk (registration required). Free admission for moms. May 10-11, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 S. New Hope Road. 704-825-4490. www.dsbg.org.
Charlotte Arab American Festival at Queens University: This year this annual Queens University festival - presented by Middle East Council of the Carolinas - switched its name from the Middle East Festival to Charlotte Arab American Festival. It features the same entertaining elements, including Arabic music, bellydancing, and cultural displays. Come early if you plan on eating some of the delicious food that will be for sale. $3 admission; Free for children 10 years old and under. May 11, 12-5 p.m. Queens University, 1900 Selwyn Ave. www.middleeastcouncilnc.org.
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