Drawing from the more frightening pages of the area's history, Carolina History & Haunts’ guides lead lantern-lit tours of eerie and haunted locales. The “Nightmares Around Elm Street” tour sends groups through the specter-laden streets of Greensboro, while the Beyond the Grave tour braves uptown Charlotte’s paranormal avenues to learn the fates of the less fortunate and possibly even witness a prankster ghost grabbing a dog's tail as it's chased.
Carolina History & Haunts partners with local businesses to give tour goers discounts on accommodations and food, and large groups are eligible for discounted pricing and private tours.
Coed dodge ball and flag-football games. Kayaking trips. Ice-climbing excursions. The open-air enthusiasts at Charlotte Outdoor Adventures coordinate a schedule of active events such as these for a membership base passionate about playing in the sunshine. Led by a qualified volunteer, groups set out on excursions ranging from hikes through the Carolinian countryside to waterfall rappelling in the Grand Canyon. Membership benefits include access to hundreds of activities each month as well as friendships forged through shared experience and bartering packed-lunch items.
Since 1936, the historic Gem Theatre has moved movie lovers to laughter and tears with films in an elegant, comfortable single-screen vintage theater. Peruse current showtimes and choose a first-run film, which may include a romantic romp, a superhero adventure, an independent feature, or Casablanca II: Electric Boogaloo. Guests pick up their sodas and popcorn at the concessions stand in the carpeted lobby, whose ornate table lamps cast soft light on potted plants and flowers. In the red and gold 916-seat amphitheater, upholstered floor seats beckon audience members and balcony perches provide a sky-high view behind marbled wood rails. Before the film, guests watch wrought-iron vines curl around colorful birds in sculptures flanking the screen. Sumptuous gold curtains hide the big screen until showtime, allowing staff members to finish reenacting each film’s climactic scene in private.
Play It! Game Center strives to facilitate an interactive atmosphere for bedroom-bound gamers, curating communal button mashing between friends and foes in the glow of 18 high-speed Alienware PCs and 15 Xbox 360s. The center's widescreen HDTVs broadcast players' digital derring-dos in renowned series such as Call of Duty and Halo, with linked consoles that enable multiplayer action without requiring access to competitors' implanted brain ports. In the midst of the flickering screens, wizard-capped card sharks assemble around 18 card tables for high-stakes Magic the Gathering and Heroscape tourneys. In addition to in-store gaming, Play It!'s for-sale selection of cards, accessories, and board games stands ready to help players nullify their n00b status.
• For $40, you get two general-admission lawn tickets (a $62 value before fees, or up to an $80 value online, including all Ticketmaster fees). • For $58, you get two tickets for seating in sections 4–9 or 10–15 (a $90 value before fees, or up to a $115 value online, including all ticketing fees).
For the certified instructors of FlyCarolina, the sky is never the limit. In the last 15 years, they have helped many aspiring air jockeys learn how to soar with their custom flight-training programs. More than 30 aircraft comprise the school's fleet, which is used to train pilots from beginner through commercial levels. FlyCarolina also offers a private jet charter service. Licensed pilots can take advantage of FlyCarolina's co-ownership program, and plane owners can swoop by to let one of the company's mechanics perform routine maintenance.