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By dave | Broker in Charlotte, NC
  • Relocating To Charlotte, NC: Kid Friendly Things To Do

    Posted Under: General Area in Charlotte, Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte, Home Buying in Charlotte  |  February 14, 2014 10:23 AM  |  770 views  |  1 comment

    When my wife and I moved to the Charlotte, NC. area a little over eight years ago with our four kids ranging in age from 9 to 2 years old one of the first things my wife looked out was kid friendly things to do in Charlotte, NC after we got settled in.  It allowed her to go out and see the town and hopefully meet some people along the way and get the kids acclimated to the area.

      The list of kid friendly activities would take a lot of space to write about everything that Charlotte, NC. has to offer for children.  So, I decided to hit on some of the main ones that we have explored and felt were worth the time to visit with children.

    First on our list was Carowinds.  Located on the North and South Carolina border this amusement park is truly designed for kids of all ages.  A great place to spend an afternoon or a day.  My kids especially love the water park and the various rides and wave pools that it offered.  The drawback is it is open seasonally so it closes down at the end of October and does not reopen again until April.  But truly a fun place to go if you enjoy amusement parks.

    Second, Discovery Place museum.  My children have always been fascinated with museums.  Especially ones that let you touch and feel and play with things in them.  The Discovery Place museum is a great place in uptown to take the kids to explore different scientific things and watch them as they use their minds to have fun and learn at the same time.  With some exhibits that are permently part of the museum and others that are traveling it seems never to have gotten boring or dull for my kids....

    Third, was the whitewater center located in Northern Charlotte area.  This is a great place to take the whole family if you are looking for a fun outdoors day.  Besides the whitewater rafting, they have over 24 different activities for kids and adults of all ages and skill levels.  Numerous water rafting and kayaking is available.  They also have some great trails to go hiking or mountain biking on and various rope courses and zip lines designed for all ages and skill levels....

    Fourth, Rays splash planet.  It is basically an indoor water park for young children.  Probably best suited for kids ten and under....It has water slide and a swimming area as well as a kids play area all indoors.  Being open year round helps and the kids love the fact they can go swimming in the winter time.

    Fifth, Charlotte parks and recreation.  One thing I was impressed with when I first moved to Charlotte and continue to be impressed with is the amount of parks and playgrounds for kids.  Despite being a large city Charlotte has been able to maintain large vats of land scattered strategically throughout Charlotte for playground sets and fields for the kids to go and run around in and play....  They even in the summer time have splash zones.  They are basically water sprinkler systems that shoot water on the kids during the summer and my kids love going and running through the sprinklers and enjoying a cool off while playing out at one of the parks. 

    Sixth, staying with the theme of the parks and recreation Charlotte has numerous greenways and is working on expanding them continuously as well.  They are scattered throughout Charlotte and on any given day you will see people walking, jogging, and riding bikes with their kids pushing strollers through...  I is a great family fun activity that cost nothing to do as well.

    Seventh, The Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden is one of my favorite places to visit.  Named after the founder who left the 400 acres to make in a garden for all to see and view it is a great afternoon to spend visiting the wonderful flowers and plants that the garden has as well as seeing some of the most beautifully preserved area of Charlotte as well.

    Eighth, Carolinas aviation Museum.  Charlotte is not known for it's planes or aircrafts except for the busy international airport.  Yet we are home to a wonderful aviation museum that is home to the plane from the miracle on the Hudson.  The one where the plane landed in the Hudson River.  With so much rich history to see and a constantly expanding museum that is mostly indoors this is truly a gem that seems to have gotten lost in the shuffle in Charlotte.

    Ninth and last on my list is the Imaginon.  It is the main library branch for the Charlotte library system and is also home to a lot of other things.  I guess it is not your typical library.  It is a collaboration of a library and a theater that brings books to life through children's plays put on by the kids.  Finished in 2005 it hosts two state of the art theaters, a library section devoted to children under 11 years old, a teen only library, classrooms, it's own multimedia production studio and interactive exhibit space all under one roof.....I have gotten lost spending a day in there with my kids with all the things to do and books to see......

    Like I said earlier there are probably a lot of other things to do in Charlotte and I have probably with my wife done most of them as well.  I thought these were the best of them.  Some required admission and others were free but it gives our kids a broad range of things to do in the Charlotte area and is a good way to start your experience in Charlotte, NC. with children as you get to know the area.

    Dave diCecco   


    Helen Adams Realty 

    Cell: 704-519-7895 



  • Relocating To Charlotte, NC: Dining In The Queen City

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Charlotte, Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte  |  February 14, 2014 10:21 AM  |  635 views  |  No comments

    When people are relocating to the Charlotte, NC. area a misperception if they have not visited yet is the type of food that Charlotte has to offer.  Yes we are in the south and as such we like our food fried.  However; Charlotte, NC. has become a great place for just about any taste bud.  I personally was surprised at the wide variety of restaurants to choose from when I first arrived in Charlotte and it is ever growing.

      Charlotte, NC. has some great places to eat that from appearances look like small little local cuisine places that offer some of the best food in town at a reasonable price.  And of course there is the five star restaurants with some award winning chefs offering just about everything you can imagine in cuisine in the Charlotte area.

    One thing about Charlotte, NC is that there is a variety of restaurants catering to all types of people, food and atmosphere scattered throughout the queen city.  I have visited some of the best hole in the wall places to get fried pickles and mouthwatering fried chicken to formal restaurants that take reservations weeks in advance do to the high demand for it's food....

    In addition to the many restaurants and local establishments Charlotte is also home to all the major fast food chains and a few I never heard of before coming to Charlotte, NC. In a pinch and need a place to eat you will find something for every taste bud in the Charlotte, NC. area.

    The one thing I noticed though traveling to Charlotte, NC. coming for the Northeast is that the city does not have many 24 hour restaurants or diners. In fact I was hard pressed to find a diner in Charlotte.  I noticed the staple here was the waffle house as ( what I would call a local diner) offering 24 hour service outside of the usual fast food chains.  Outside fo the weekends it seems most of the nicer restaurants tend to close down by 10p.m. on the weekday's.

    But with Johnson and Wales Culinary institute having one of it's campus located here and the Art institute having a college campus in Charlotte there is always fine cooks coming out looking to make a name for themselves in the Charlotte region.....  This has added to the diversity and types of food that is served in Charlotte.  In addition,  people moving in here are opening local cuisine restaurants tailored after their heritage in the Charlotte area all the time and has added to the diversity of types of food you can experience in the Charlotte region.

    So no matter what type of food you are looking for form fast food all the way up to five star dining you will find it in Charlotte, NC….

    Dave diCecco 


    Helen Adams Realty 

    Cell: 704-519-7895 



  • Relocating To Charlotte, NC: The Theater

    Posted Under: General Area in Charlotte, Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte, Home Buying in Charlotte  |  January 27, 2014 6:15 AM  |  379 views  |  No comments

    Relocating to Charlotte, NC. Area and another large concern among people moving to the area is what is the cultural life like in Charlotte area.  What is there to do and where to go?  Charlotte is home to a wide array of arts and music venues scattered throughout the area.  Listed below are some of the more popular theater places to visit in Charlotte area.  Some make a great family event and others are perfect for a date night or night on the town where you want to catch a live show.


    One of the most popular venues people in the Charlotte area visit is the Blumenthal center for performing arts. Located right in the heart of uptown this is home to many different types of art and culture.  It hosts various off Broadway plays, home to the Charlotte symphony orchestra and the North Carolina Dance Theater among other acts and performers who perform there year round.  With it’s walking distance to some fine dining it has become a very popular destination for the arts in uptown.

    In addition there is the Actor’s Theater of Charlotte another popular destination that tends to sell out often on the weekends. Actor's Theatre of Charlotte presents bold and innovative new works by contemporary playwrights. It may be considered the Charlotte region's only professional theatre producing Off-Broadway-style plays at a very reasonable price.

    Just outside of uptown in the arts district of NoDa is the Carolina Actors studio with its well renowned producers and writers.  A great informal place to see a play where they incorporate the audience into some of their productions but always has you thinking.

    Then there are my two favorite ones which are basically the same but one is for adults and the other for children.  It si the Theater Charlotte and Children’s theater of Charlotte. Theater Charlotte is actually the oldest running theater in Charlotte celebrating over 86 years and running and like it’s sister companion the Children’s theater of Charlotte is run by mostly volunteers.  Most of the people involved in the productions are doing it as a volunteer.  I love the theater Charlotte for it’s quality play rights and the kids love the children’s theater for it’s storylines (geared to kids 3-18) with one of the few traveling fully professional touring groups calling it home.  With over 300 performances a year it is a huge hit with kids and parents alike.

    Now, you can venture outside the city of Charlotte to the neighboring town of Matthews and you will find smaller community house type venue the Matthews Playhouse of performing arts that bring local talent on the stage for a fun filled night as well.   This theater is unique in that it allows the children to perform in front of an audience at very young ages and grow with the theater as they have expanded to offer adult shows in addition to the children shows and now perform year round.

     In addition you have the local colleges with their performing arts programs that offer a fun filled evening out as well.  Coming from Connecticut and frequently visiting New York and Broadway I found the theater choices and types of plays and theater here is Charlotte to be excellent with it’s wide array and especially love the kids programs to get my children to enjoy the theater as much as I do at a younger age.

    Dave diCecco
    Helen Adams Realty
    Cell: 704-519-7895
  • Restaurant Week/Queen's Feast Charlotte, NC. 2014

    Posted Under: General Area in Charlotte, Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte, Shopping & Local Amenities in Charlotte  |  January 18, 2014 11:41 AM  |  426 views  |  No comments

    charlotte restaurant weekIt is that time of the year again.  Starting on Friday January 17, 2014 and running through January 26, 2014 Charlotte is celebrating Queens Feast.  It is an annual event that a lot of people look forward to.  It is the chance to dine at some of the best restaurants in the Charlotte area.

    The restaurants offer during this week at least a three course meal for $30.00 per person excluding beverages, gratuity and taxes.  A lot of these restaurants on a normal night get more than that for just the main course and it allows people to try different restaurants all the while enjoying some of the finest cooking in Charlotte.

    I look forward to this annual event as it allows me to try different restaurants out at a fraction of what I normally would spend at them….This year there are over 100 Charlotte area restaurants participating in the event.  If you like to dine out or looking for a special date night event; this is cannot miss opportunity.

    The menu is comprised of a few choices for this event every year and I know I have never been disappointed and no one I have spoken to that attends one of the restaurants during this week has either…..

    To see a list of the participating restaurants click on the link: http://www.charlotterestaurantweek.com/pages/restaurants.html

    Dave diCecco


    Helen Adams Realty

    Cell: 704-519-7895



  • Family Friendly Things To Do In Charlotte, NC.

    Posted Under: General Area in Charlotte, Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte, Parks & Recreation in Charlotte  |  November 22, 2013 9:02 AM  |  689 views  |  3 comments


    If you think Charlotte might be your new home, it helps to know what and where the fun is.

    The top 5 family fun attractions in the Charlotte area are: Carowinds, the U.S. National Whitewater Center, Discovery Place, NASCAR Hall of Fame and Great Wolf Lodge.

    Carowinds, which is right on the edge of Charlotte but actually in South Carolina, is a 398-acre amusement park with more than 50 rides. There are 13 roller coasters and a water park with two wave pools and several slides and tube rides. This year, Dinosaurs Alive! Opened at Carowinds. This new interactive attraction features 32 life-sized roaring and moving dinosaurs.

    If you love the outdoors, its not far from Charlotte. In fact, the U.S. National Whitewater Center is still inside Charlotte’s city limits. Go kayaking, whitewater rafting, mountain biking, take a canopy tour, climb the climbing wall or paddleboard the Catawba River at this beautiful  whitewater center which is located not far from the urban areas of Charlotte.

    Considered one of the best hands-on science museums in the nation, Discovery Place, which is in uptown Charlotte, also has an IMAX Dome Theatre. Families can have fun in this newly-renovated museums with not only the fun interactive exhibits but they can also take part in summer camps and educational programs.

    On the other end of uptown Charlotte, sits the NASCAR Hall of Fame. See what it’s like for race car drivers in the iRacing Simulator Refuel or challenge yourself y jacking up a car to change a tire with the Kobolt Pit Challenge. Watch a film about NASCAR in the High Octane Theater and grab a bite at the Pit Stop Cafe before exploring more of Charlotte.

    Towards Concord and not too far from Charlotte is the Great Wolf Lodge. This family resort has 400 guest suites, kid-friendly spa, games, dining and even an ice cream parlor. But the real fun is the 80,000 square-foot indoor waterpark with its 11 water slides, 1,000 gallon tipping bucket and four pools.

    Looking for something else fun for family in Charlotte and the surrounding area? Here’s a list of a few other venues, museums and attractions to check out:

    Billy Graham Library

    Bost Grist Mill (Concord)

    C. Grier Beam Truck Museum (Cherryville)

    Carl J. McEwen Historic Village (Mint Hill)

    Carolinas Aviation Museum

    Charlotte Trolley Powerhouse Museum

    N.C. Transportation Museum (Spencer)

    President James K. Polk Historic Site (Pineville)

    Reed Gold Mine State Historic Site (Midland)
    Schiele Museum of Natural History (Gastonia)

    Wells Fargo History Museum

    Energy Explorium (Huntersville)

    Fort Dobbs (Statesville)

    Heritage Farmstead (Statesville)

    Historic Brattonsville (McConnells, SC)

    Historic Rosedale

    Carolina Raptor Center

    Hugh Torrance House and Store (Huntersville)

    Iredell Museum kids@play (Statesville)

    Latta Plantation

    Levine Museum of the New South

    Lincoln County Museum of History (Lincolnton)

    Main Street Children's Museum (Rock Hill, SC)

    Mint Museum

    Mint Museum of Craft and Design

    Museum of the Waxhaws (Waxhaw)

    Museum of York County (Rock Hill, SC)

    N.C. Auto Racing Hall of Fame (Mooresville)
    Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden (Belmont)

    As you can see Charlotte offers a lot of fun and different activities for families from museums, galleries to sport venues.  Charlotte is also home to the NFL Carolina Panthers, NBA Charlotte Bobcats, Minor league Hockey team the Charlotte Checkers and Triple A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox the Charlotte Knights.  In addition to the speedway which hosts the Coca-Cola 600 on Memorial Day weekend  and the Bank of America 500 in October. 

    Dave diCecco
    Helen Adams Realty
    Cell: 704-519-7895


  • Veterans Day---Free Things For Veterans In Charlotte NC. 2013

    Posted Under: Entertainment & Nightlife in Charlotte, Shopping & Local Amenities in Charlotte, Military Movers in Charlotte  |  November 11, 2013 5:44 AM  |  452 views  |  No comments
  • Today marks Veterans Day.  A day we remember all the people who proudly served our country with a special day.  Without the fine men and women to help serve our country a lot of the freedoms and liberties we enjoy today would not be possible.  Being a veteran I appreciate the acknowledgement and know fellow veterans do as well...  As a way of saying thank you to our many military veterans who put their lives on the line to help keep our freedom many local and chain restaurants are offering free meals and other things for veterans as there way of saying thanks.  I have compiled a list of the things I have found that I could verify to be accurate.  I hope all veterans out there and active duty military personal enjoy your day today...You have deserved it.  And from the bottom of my heart THANK YOU.

    Here is the list of free things for Veterans today:

    Applebee's will give a free signature entree to active duty or veterans today.
    Bar Louie is giving a free meal up to a $12 value to veterans today.
    California Pizza and Kitchen are giving a free pizza to both veterans and active duty military.
    Car wash is offering a free car wash to veterans.
    Carabba's is giving free appetizer to veterans and active duty military.
    Chili’s is offering a free entree or lunch combo for veterans today.
    Einstein Bagels is giving a signature of classic bagel for free to veterans today.
    Golden Corral; is having their annual military appreciation night dinner from 4p.m. to 9p.m.  All active duty and veterans get a free meal.  
    Great Clips is giving a free haircut to all active duty and veterans today.  If you do not need a haircut today you can pick up a free card for use by December 31st.
    Hooters is giving a free meal to veterans and active duty military.
    Krispy Kreme is asking all active duty and veterans to stop by for a free coffee and doughnut.
    Long Horn Steakhouse is giving a free Texas onion appetizer and non-alcoholic beverage to all veterans through the 14th.
    Olive Garden is giving a free dinner to all active duty and veterans today with family member’s receiving 10% off their bill.
    On the Border is offering all active duty and veterans a free create your own combo today.
    Outback Steakhouse is giving a blooming onion and drink to all veterans.
    Red Robin is giving away a tavern double burger to each veteran, active duty and their guest.
    Red Lobster is offering a free appetizer to veterans through the 14th.
    Shoney's is giving a free all American burger to veterans.
    Sizzler is offering free lunch today through 4p.m. to veterans.
    Starbucks is giving a free tall brewed coffee to active duty and veterans as well as their spouse today.
    Sports Clips is giving free haircuts to veterans today.
    Texas Roadhouse is giving free lunch to all veterans today. 
    TGIF is offering a free lunch to all veterans.

    There might be more than this available.  If you know of any please post a comment letting everyone know.  And today especially if you see a veteran or active duty military personal thank him or her for their service to our country.  Without them we would not know FREEDOM.

    Dave diCecco
    Helen Adams Realty
    Cell: 704-519-7895

  • Matthews Alive Labor Day Weekend Festival 2013---Matthews, NC.

    Posted Under: Entertainment & Nightlife in Matthews, Parks & Recreation in Matthews  |  August 28, 2013 7:16 AM  |  1,210 views  |  No comments

    Looking for something fun to do this labor day weekend? Come to Matthews, NC. for the annual Matthews Alive festival held every year during Labor Day weekend. This year the event starts on Friday August 30, 2013 and ends on Monday September 2, 2013. This is a great fun filled family attraction.

    In the nine years I have lived in Matthews, NC.; a year has not gone by that I have not visited Matthews Alive. Each day and night there are different bands and musicians playing on one of the three stages they have set up catering to different tastes of music throughout the weekend. There are carnival rides and games for the kids ( and kids at heart). Large arts and craft show, various food vendors and other family oriented events.

    Do not miss the parade on Saturday morning. This is the LARGEST Labor Day parade in the Southeast ( who would think a small town like Matthews NC would be such a large attraction for labor Day?). It starts at 10:a.m. SHARP. Come see the various bands from area high schools, floats and organizations throughout Charlotte area for this great event.

    Come by on Labor Day and see the classic car show held in front of the Town hall/Library.  it is held in the morning and is a great place to spend soem time if you enjoy antique cars and collectible cars.

    The part that attracts me most to go to Matthews Alive (besides the great fun and memories it brings) is that 100% of all the profits are given back to the local charities and organizations in the  community....This is a fundraiser but not one for the town of Matthews...but one for the local charities in Matthews and the surrounding area that help out families...it makes it even more worthwhile knowing I not only get to have fun; but my money is going to worthy causes....

    I hope to see you all there this weekend...I know you will not be disappointed.....They are always adding new attractions along the way and the parade seems to grow every year. Last year the parade lasted over an hour and it is expected ot be as long if not longer this year


    Dave diCecco
    Coldwell Banker United
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