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More summer fun 

May

CHARLOTTE MOUNTAIN BIKE SERIES May 20-Sept. 2: Races open to all bikers regardless of experience with 12 categories. $17. Location varys each week. 704-503-0138. www.charlottemtnbike.com.

WINDSTREAM POLE NIGHT May 21: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers give their all during qualifying and try to claim first position for the Coca-Cola 600. $12-$20. Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord. 704-455-3200. www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.

FOOD LION SPEED STREET May 21-23: The streets of Uptown Charlotte are transformed into a showcase of motorsports with three entertainment stages, appearances by top Sprint Cup Drivers, exhibits for all ages, simulators, and more. Free. 11 a.m. to midnight. 704-455-5555. www.600festival.com.

WORLD OF OUTLAWS SHOWDOWN May 22: The nation's best sprint car racers battle it out on the dirt track. $10-$25. 5 p.m. The Dirt Track at Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord. 704-455-3200. www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.

PATRIOT FESTIVAL May 23: Join us Memorial Day weekend as we salute our military heroes. Experience an activity-filled day with your friends and family with live music, kid-fun area, military vehicles, fire trucks and special military maneuvers. $5 donation. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Symphony Park at SouthPark Mall, 4400 Sharon Rd. 704-533-3796. www.patriotgala.com.

$25 WORKSHOPS AT CHEAP JOE'S ART STUFF May 23: Beginning Oils with Katie Blackwell; May 30: Intro to Anime and Manga w/ Bethany Root. Cheap Joe's Art Stuff, 4420 Monroe Rd. 704-333-2527. www.cheapjoes.com.

"BACK TO THE GARDEN" COMPOSTING WORKSHOP May 23: Learn how to turn grass clippings, leaves, twigs, kitchen scraps, and more into treasure through composting! $10. 1 p.m.-2:30 p.m. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 South New Hope Road, Belmont, N.C. 704-829-1252. www.DSBG.com.

CONCAROLINAS 2009 May 29-31: Charlotte's best convention for fans of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, gaming, anime, and costuming. Features numerous writers, media, and art guests. $15-$30. Hilton Charlotte University Place, 8629 JM Keynes Drive. www.concarolinas.org.

2009 PET PALOOZA May 30: The Humane Society of Charlotte's annual dog walk includes a one-mile pet walk, vendors, refreshments, musical entertainment, a dog fashion show, a silent auction, other activities and fun for the entire family. $10 to walk; free otherwise. 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Independence Park, 300 Hawthorne Lane. 704-494-7704. www.humanesocietyofcharlotte.org.

KIDS TRIATHALON May 30: Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics invites children ages 2-14, including physically challenged, to compete in our swim/bike/run triathalon. 6 p.m. Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics, 11725 Verhoff Drive, Huntersville. 704-666-2222. www.HFFA.com.

INDOOR FOOTBALL May 30: Carolina Speed vs. South Carolina Force. $5-$20. 7 p.m. Bojangles' Coliseum, 2700 E. Independence Blvd. 704-786-0280. www.carolinaspeed.com.

OUTDOOR PORTRAITURE WITH DAVID KELLY May 30: Learn how to take portraits outdoors using natural lighting. $36. 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 South New Hope Road, Belmont, N.C. 704-829-1252. www.DSBG.com.

MEN IN THE CITY BACHELOR AUCTION May 30: Meet some of Charlotte's most successful and eligible bachelors. A portion of the proceeds will be donated toward college scholarships. $20. 6 p.m.-10 p.m. Spirit Square, 345 N. College St. 704-451-5910. www.deltasofcharlotte.org.

June

LOWE'S FOODS TASTE OF CHARLOTTE June 5-7: Enjoy an array of culinary delights as you choose from over 100 samples from Charlotte's finest restaurants. Live entertainment. Free admission. June 5-6, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. June 7, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Rain or shine. www.tasteofcharlotte.com.

COOKING WITH EXECUTIVE CHEF BRIGGS June 6: Cooking demonstrations from "farm to table." Learn the simple steps on how to prepare these delicious recipes in your kitchen by Executive Chef Gene Briggs. $39.95. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Blue Restaurant & Bar, 214 N. Tryon St. 704-927-2583. www.bluecharlotte.com.

INTERNATIONAL PASO FINO HORSE & STARTOWN STABLES-BONE MARROW FOUNDATION CHARITY HORSE SHOW June 6: Show classes all day. Kids' corral will include pony rides, face painting and more! Free. Starts at 10 a.m. Latta Plantation Park, 5225 Sample Road, Huntersville. 828-465-3322. www.startownstables.com.

VOLLEYBALL BASH June 6-7: Sixth annual tournament. Cash prices. Pre-register. 9 a.m. Memorial Stadium, 310 N. Kings Drive. 704-336-7644. www.charlottevb.com.

LOWE'S MOTOR SPEEDWAY SUMMER SHOOTOUT SERIES June 9-Aug. 11: The 16th annual Summer Shootout Series each Tuesday night includes Legends Car, Bandolero and Thunder Car racing as well as special attractions like school bus race nights and a huge Fireworks Extravaganza Night! $7. 7:30 p.m. Lowe's Motor Speedway, Concord. 704-455-3200. www.lowesmotorspeedway.com.

2009 POINTS BONANZA-DISC GOLF COMPETITION June 11-14: Presented by the Charlotte Disc Golf Club. Reedy Creek, 2900 Rocky River Road. 704-907-8334. www.charlottedgc.com.

FRENCH ROSE WINE TASTING June 13: Discover the distinctions of fine wine and complementary appetizers. Reservations are recommended. $15. 6 p.m. Gallery Restaurant & Bar, 10000 Ballantyne Commons Pkwy. 704-248-4100. www.gallery-restaurant.com.

WORLD KAYAK HOMETOWN THROWDOWN June 13: A freestyle kayaking event series for spectators and Charlotte's paddling community based on the legendary Maryland Chute Outs. $5 to watch, $25 to participate. 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. US National Whitewater Center, 5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy. 704-391-3900. www.usnwc.org.

LAKE WYLIE SPLASH DASH RACES June 13: 5K &10K races. $20. 8 a.m. Camp Thunderbird, Lake Wylie, S.C. 803-831-2827. www.lakewyliesc.com.

ARTS & CRAFTS @ UNIVERSITY PLACE June 13-14: Outdoor arts and crafts from over 50 vendors with a play area for kids. Free. Sat., 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sun., 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Shoppes at University Place, 8929 JM Keynes Dr. www.pursestoo.com.

TIME TRAVELERS CAMP June 15-19: Learn to cook over an open fire, drill with soldiers, write with a quill pen, play historic games, and much more. For students entering grades 4-6. $185/week. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday. Historic Brattonsville, 4621 Mt. Gallant Blvd, Rock Hill, S.C. 803-981-9182. http://chmuseums.org.

JUNETEENTH FESTIVAL OF THE CAROLINAS June 18-21: Celebration of the cultural heritage of slaves through food, arts, and music to bring together Africans, African-Americans and non-Africans. Free. Times vary. Independence Park, 300 Hawthorne Lane. 704-376-6160. www.juneteenthofthecarolinas.com.

HEROES CONVENTION June 19-21: A comic book lover's dream. Meet some of your favorite authors: Brian Michael Bendis, Ed Brubaker, George Perez, and many more. For more info call Heroes Aren't Hard to Find at 704-375-7462. $15-$30. Charlotte Convention Center, 501 S. College St. www.heroesonline.com.

KIDS TRIATHALON June 20: Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics invites children ages 2-14, including physically challenged to compete in our swim/bike/run triathalon. 6 pm. Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics, 11725 Verhoff Drive, Huntersville. 704-766-2222. www.HFFA.com.

CLASSIC CARS TOUR THE GARDEN June 20: The Broad River European Motor Club will have their classic European cars on display. $5-$10. 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 South New Hope Road, Belmont, NC. 704-829-1252. www.DSBG.org.

INDOOR FOOTBALL June 20: Carolina Speed vs. Fayetteville Guard. $15. 7 p.m. Bojangles' Coliseum, 2700 E. Independence Blvd. 704-786-0280. www.carolinaspeed.com.

WIITOURNII BOWLING COMPETITION June 20: Win up to $500,000 in prizes including the $250,000 grand prize! Free to watch, $79 to compete. 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Charlotte Convention Center, 501 S. College St. 704-339-6000. wiitournii.com.

DUB SHOW TOUR CUSTOM AUTO SHOW & CONCERT June 20: See lowriders, custom bikes, a $2 million car and more. Artist has yet to be announced for the concert. $20. 4 p.m.-9 p.m. Charlotte Convention Center, 501 S. College St. 704-339-6000. www.dubshowtour.com.

CHANNEL 9'S SUMMER FOOD DRIVE June 24: Stop by Channel 9's studios to drop off donations. Need canned fruits and veggies, soups, tuna, cereal, peanut butter, pasta, and beef stew. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. WSOC-TV, 1901 N. Tryon St. 704-338-9999. www.wsoctv.com.

INDOOR FOOTBALL June 27: Carolina Speed vs. South Carolina Force. $15. 7 p.m. Bojangles' Coliseum, 2700 E. Independence Blvd. 704-786-0280. www.carolinaspeed.com.

July

4TH ANNUAL VETERANS & RESERVISTS GOLF CLASSIC July 1: Free round of golf and free lunch for those who qualify. Register before June 12. 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. The Tradition Public Golf Course, 3800 Prosperity Church Road. 704-336-3590. www.parkandrec.com.

GARDEN NIGHTS July 2, 9, 16, 23, 30: Visit Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden every Thursday evening for this year's Garden Nights program, which sports the theme "Tropical Oasis." Stroll the garden and enjoy guided garden walks, live entertainment, food with a tropical flair, beer and wine. $5-$10. 5 p.m.-9 p.m. 6500 South New Hope Rd. 704-825-4490. www.dsbg.org.

WBT KNIGHTS SKYSHOW 2009 July 4: A sporty way to celebrate, this event offers a night of baseball, hot dogs and fireworks that are synchronized to a patriotic soundtrack played live inside Knights Stadium. $7-$12. 5 p.m.-12 a.m. Knights Stadium, 2280 Deerfield Drive, Fort Mill, S.C. 803-548-8050.

FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION July 4: Parade begins at the Davidson Town Hall at 4:30 p.m. Immediately following gather on the Village Green for a fun-filled evening of music and games. Festivities include a children's amusement area and live stage entertainment by Rough Draft. 4:30 p.m.-8 p.m. Village Green in downtown Davidson. www.ci.davidson.nc.us.

WILD ABOUT SUMMER-WILD-LIFE July 11: Come see birds of prey from The Carolina Raptor Center and ground animals like snakes, turtles, and a Virginia Opossum courtesy of the Schiele Museum. Experts will be on hand to answer questions. $5-$10. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, 6500 South New Hope Road, Belmont, N.C. 704-829-1252. www.DSBG.org.

WORLD KAYAK HOMETOWN THROWDOWN July 11: A freestyle kayaking event series for spectators and Charlotte's paddling community based on the legendary Maryland Chute Outs. $5 to watch, $25 to participate. 12 p.m. & 5 p.m. US National Whitewater Center, 5000 Whitewater Center Pkwy. 704-391-3900. www.usnwc.org.

INTERGALACTIC BEAD & JEWELRY SHOWS, INC July 18-19: A vast array of precious and semi-precious gemstone beads, sterling silver, vintage beads, and much more. Classes are also available. $5. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Metrolina Expo Trade Center, 7100 Statesville Road. 888-729-6904. www.beadshows.com.

2009 LAKE NORMAN EXCURSION July 18: Start and end location is at Lowe's Corporate Headquarters in Mooresville. For more information, visit www.lakenormanexcursion.com.

KIDS TRIATHALON July 25: Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics invites children ages 2-14, including physically challenged to compete in our swim/bike/run triathalon. 6 p.m. Huntersville Family Fitness & Aquatics, 11725 Verhoff Drive, Huntersville. 704-766-2222. For more, visit www.HFFA.com.

PRIDE CHARLOTTE FESTIVAL 2009 July 25: An outdoor event celebrating Charlotte's gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community with celebrity entertainment, food, merchandise, activities, and numerous organizations. Gateway Village, 800 W. Trade St. 704-333-0144. www.pridecharlotte.com.

August

GARDEN NIGHTS Aug. 6, 13, 20: Visit Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden every Thursday evening for this year's Garden Nights program, which sports the theme "Tropical Oasis." Stroll the garden and enjoy guided garden walks, live entertainment, food with a tropical flair, beer and wine. $5-$10. 5 p.m.-9 p.m. 6500 South New Hope Rd. 704-825-4490. www.dsbg.org.

WORLD KAYAK HOMETOWN THROWNDOWN Aug. 8: Event for Charlotte's local paddling community and spectators alike. 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. US National Whitewater Center, 500 Whitewater Center Pkwy. 704-391-3900. www.usnwc.org.

2009 HUMMINGBIRD FESTIVAL Aug. 22: Watch live professional hummingbird banding demonstrations and enjoy crafts, games, entertainment, vendors, and food at Reedy Creek Nature Center. 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. 2900 Rocky River Rd. 704-598-8857.

GREATER CHARLOTTE ANTIQUE & COLLECTIBLES SHOW Aug. 28-30: Featuring a variety of merchandise, as well as concession stands with food and beverages.$4-$5. Aug. 28-29, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Aug. 30, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Cabarrus Arena & Events Center, 4751 NC Highway 49 North, Concord. 800-824-3770. www.charlotteantiqueshow.com.

SOUTHERN IDEAL HOME SHOW Aug. 28-Aug. 30: Talk to experts about remodeling, decorating and landscaping ideas during this special show, which has all you need to know about everything from home décor to building and home improvement solutions. $9 at the door. Aug. 28, 12 p.m.-9 p.m., Aug. 29, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Aug. 30, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. The Park (formerly the Charlotte Merchandise Mart), 2500 E. Independence Blvd. 704-376-4085. www.southernshows.com.

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