Life in the QC: The best things about growing up in Charlotte, NC

The Queen City, the QC, the 704 and the ‘home of the dab’

The QC, the “home of the dab” and the 704, (or for some of you late to the game, 980) has some serious staples that make it the city we all know and love.

Whether you live in north, south, east or west Charlotte, we can all agree on these top faves.


A night out with friends is not complete until you all pack into one car and drive up to Amelie’s. I mean, who can turn down a salted caramel brownie and feeling like they didn’t dress hip enough? Also the prime place to run into everyone you know.

The Fillmore and the Music Factory

So your favorite artist is coming into town, but since you’re ahead of the curve and they aren’t too mainstream yet, they’re going to be at the Fillmore or Music Factory if it’s warm outside. Nothing beats that cramped lawn or even more cramped inside.

Crowder’s Mountain

While this might not technically be in Charlotte, it’s still a staple to the town. Whether you hike the short side or the long side, you’re in for a good work out and some great views of downtown (or uptown?) from super far away. Don’t forget to post a picture of you from the top because how else are people supposed to know you were active today?


And more importantly, Scarowinds. If you’re from Charlotte, you’ve definitely had a season pass, even if you only went once in the beginning of the summer and then realized the end of summer was coming and went again. You still call After Burn “Top Gun.” Even after the hot summer and long lines, the best time of the year for the park was Scarowinds. My mom said she could drive us there if yours can pick up.


Ahh, NoDa. Not only is it home to Amelie’s, but also those murals you love to take pics with. It’s the best place for a taco, a beer or a tattoo (or all three if you’re feelin’ adventurous).

PNC Amphitheater

Or as we still call it, Verizon Amphitheater. No summer is complete without driving out here to a concert, maneuvering through various tailgates to find a parking space and sitting on the lawn squished up against other strangers. And of course, how could we forget the after-concert traffic that gets you home in a short three hours after the concert has ended.

Light Rail

As in that thing you’ve taken approximately five times to either get to Speed Street or Time Warner Arena. This is Charlotte’s greatest attempt at being urban, but is still only one line and a few stops into uptown (or downtown?). No matter, you are always in for an interesting ride.

The malls

You’ve got South Park, which is where the majority of shopping is done. You wander around and get a pretzel before you leave. There’s also CowFish next door, which is still one of the greatest inventions to date.

Then you’ve got Carolina Place, which is really only good if you’re in a rush or need to go to Forever 21. Lastly, the new Tanger Outlets, which are perfect for buying jeans in bulk and getting everything from last season half off.

That “tree” on 485

This just really needed a shout out. 485 is home to ridiculous amounts of traffic, black Suburban SUVs cutting you off and of course, the famous “tree.” Charlotte, you are not fooling anyone.

Not mentioned but still important: the Knights stadium (because all of the sudden, people care about baseball again), the Panther’s stadium (very obvious) and NASCAR Hall of Fame (which you have never even been to).

If you have been to all of these places, you must be from Charlotte, no doubt about it (which, hopefully, you have already figured out at this point). Here’s to more traffic, more BBQ and more memories in the Queen City.