To be in the center of everything it will depend on what "Everything" is. However, if it were me, I would be looking in south Charlotte close to Uptown Charlotte. Whether it is great restaurants, shopping, health food stores, entertainment including arts and sports - you can find it either Uptown or in South Charlotte.
Again, if it were me, I would buy vs. rent because prices are great, there are a lot of motivated sellers who might be willing to pay for some or all of your closing costs. Combine that with low interest rates and great loan programs, it would be better to buy than rent.
A Realtor can help you find the area that is either in or near the "Everything" you want to enjoy. Plus their expertise is important in helping you not only buy a house but getting through the buying process. Let me know if I can help!