CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Festival in the Park has returned to Freedom Park for the 59th year this weekend. 

The festival will be held from 4-9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 22, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. It showcases local and regional artists in a family environment around Freedom Park Lake.

1. Music will fill the air 

The festival’s main stage will be home to both local and national performers alike. Friday features Charlotte native Nitara’s Love Notes from 7-9 p.m. 

Saturday afternoon kicks off with the Charlotte Pride Band at noon, followed by the Charlotte Youth Ballet. After a performance by the Hope of Israel Dancers, The Chain, a Fleetwood Mac tribute band will serve as the main act from 7-9 p.m. 

On Sunday, acoustic duo Munn & Nunn will play from noon to 1 p.m., and Youth Orchestras of Charlotte follow. The festival closer is Luv N Harmony, bringing gospel to the park grounds. 

2. There is fun for all ages 

The festival continues to find ways to involve Charlotte-area youth in activities that stimulate their senses. The Family Fun Zone surrounds the Freedom Park locomotive. The younger festival-goers can experience the Way Out Swing, sliding down the Rapid Slide, enjoying the Fun House, climbing through an inflatable Obstacle Course, Climbing “Mount Everest” in Myers Park, clanging the bell of a trackless train or challenging their parent on a dual slide. 

Rides cost $1.50 per ticket, but five tickets are $5, going up in multiples of five to 20 ($20).

(Festival in the Park)

3. Chow down on Charlotte food staples 

Food vendors will be set up throughout Freedom Park, including the Discovery Place Nature Museum. Options include Hillbilly Soda Shop, Gus’s Greek Foods, Carolina Barbecue Company, Steak Boys Inc., King of Pops, Bruster’s Ice Cream and Island Noodles. 

There will be a beer garden , but no alcohol purchased at the festival may be taken out of the park. 

4. Take in a juried art show 

More than 150 artisans have been invited to exhibit and sell their work at the festival. Spectators get the chance to meet and chat with the artists while looking for that special piece of artwork to grace their home. 

The Festival Lake Walk is an area of artists exhibiting at Festival in the Park, consisting of traditional arts and crafts. There is a minimum of $4,000 in awards. 

5. Be mindful of neighbors 

Parking is available Friday after 5 p.m. and all day Saturday and Sunday at Atrium Health Myers Park, the Atrium Health gravel lot on East Boulevard and Discovery Place Nature. It costs $10, and lots are cash-only.

If you park on the side streets around the park, organizers ask visitors to be considerate of the neighbors to park legally. 

For more information, visit the festival website.