/Lake Activities

Five Things We Love About Fall in Mooresville

Five Things We Love About Fall in Mooresville

In our office, everyone gets excited when fall is in the air. There is something about the crisper air and the promise of cooler days to come that motivates us to get out and enjoy the great activities and events that Mooresville has to offer. Here, we’ve picked five of our favorite things that we love about fall. Let us know if you agree, and as always, tag us in your photos when you are out and about experiencing the fall season!

1. Fall Festivals

Nothing says put on your plaid and grab a craft beer like a fall festival! And luckily, we have a few to choose from around Mooresville. The Carolina BalloonFest is one of the most popular and anticipated events in our area. The second oldest hot air balloon festival in the country, Carolina BalloonFest features more than 50 balloons, live music acts, an artisan marketplace, food, craft beer and wine vendors, as well as special events and entertainment. The 3-day festival attracts upwards of 40,000 attendees every year. This year’s festival is October 18, 19 & 20. Tickets can be purchased online or at the event, and children under 12 are admitted for free.

One of our favorite fall traditions here is the Mooresville Weiner Race, where weiner dogs (also known as Dachshunds) race it out for the title of champion. Entries compete in different divisions, which include “Cutest” and “Best Dressed.”  The free October 12 event is a great photo opportunity, fun for the entire family, and helps raise awareness and funds for local animal rescue groups.

If you’re in to art and wine, or just something really fun to do on a Friday night, head to downtown Mooresville on October 4th for Uncorked & Artsy. Stroll down Main and Broad Streets for wine and beer tastings while taking in the artwork of local and regional artists. Live music and light appetizers are part of the entry fee, as well as a souvenir Downtown Uncorked & Artsy glass. Tickets are available online here. 

Our two animals parks, Lazy 5 Ranch and Zootastic, also hold Fall Festivals. The cooler weather is perfect for interacting with the animals, and special fall activities keep the kiddos (and you!) entertained. Zootastic holds its festival on October 26 & 27, while the Fall Festival at Lazy 5 Ranch runs October 5 – 27.

2. Pumpkin Patch Picking

It wouldn’t be fall without pumpkins, and luckily we have some fun places for you to pick that perfect gourd. Carrigan Farms pumpkin season runs through the month of October, and is a true pumpkin patch where you can wander around the field in search of the perfect pumpkin. They also offer hayrides to and from the fields.

The Triple Diamond Farms Pumpkin Patch runs every Saturday and Sunday in October. In addition to bringing home a pumpkin, you can enjoy hayrides, a petting zoo, games, pony rides and more. Josh’s Farmers Market has pumpkins galore, as well as a huge selection of mums and other seasonal decor. While you’re there, pick up some of the freshest produce around!

There are also a few seasonal vendors that set up around Mooresville offering pumpkins and fall plants and decor. Keep an eye out for them while you’re out and about.

3. Outdoor Eats & Drinks

While summer patio dining certainly has its advantages, to us it’s even better in the fall, when you don’t have to time your meal to avoid the heat of the day. Most days in the fall you can hit the decks any time of the day or night and be comfortable. We have some great outdoor dining experiences in Mooresville, including some that are waterfront for awesome lake views.

Prickly Pear and Eddies on Lake Norman share the same parking lot and the same peaceful view of Lake Norman. Prickly Pear serves upscale modern Mexican cuisine and tasty variations on the margarita, while Eddies specializes in casual seafood, Italian and American classics. The lakeside deck bar at Eddies is popular with locals and visitors alike, and you can even arrive by boat or other watercraft, as they have a sandy beach where you can dock your boat.

The Blue Parrot Grill is quite the bustling scene on summer weekends, and while they are seasonal and close in the colder months, the warm days of fall are perfect for drinks and lunch or dinner on their waterfront deck. Bartenders serve up cold drinks from the tiki bar, and the giant beach chair is a popular spot for taking photos. They also welcome dogs on the patio!

For true outdoor dining, grab a meal from a food truck at one of our local breweries. King Canary Brewing has a large and welcoming patio area with umbrellas and picnic tables. They usually have a food truck parked on site, or you can grab light snacks at the bar while you sip your craft beer, cider, or wine. Beer Lab has an outdoor patio with picnic tables for enjoying their experimental beers, which change weekly and sometimes daily. They do not serve food, but you can grab some awesome barbeque from Smokey J’s, located next door. Ghostface Brewing is popular with the lunch and dinner crowd as they partner with Davidson Pizza Company, located in the same space, to serve specialty pizzas and the most amazing wings. Dogs are welcome on the patios at all of the breweries!

4. Water Sports

While you wouldn’t traditionally think of water sports as activities to enjoy in the fall, thanks to our mild climate, we can have warm days all through the fall, often up until Thanksgiving! It’s a great time to enjoy Lake Norman, as there are fewer boats on the water and the days are warm but not too hot. One of our favorite lake activities is Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP). You can be as active as you want, with a fast paced paddle or yoga workout, or simply hang out on the board and soak up some rays. If you want to cruise a larger area of the lake, you may want to rent a boat or jet ski.

Check out our list of places to rent boats, jet skis, SUPs and more.

If you’re feeling a bit more adventurous, you may want to try wakeboarding or wakesurfing. For the best experience, go with a lesson from one of the experienced coaches on Lake Norman. You’ll not only get expert instruction, you’ll also have access to the nicest boards, gear, and boats. STP Wake and Ride LKN will have you up and behind the boat in no time!

4. Hiking or Biking at LKN State Park

While everyone loves summer, I think most people find the break in the heat refreshing on fall days. It’s the perfect time to get outdoors and enjoy some recreation, like hiking or biking at Lake Norman State Park. One of the most visited attractions in our area, the park offers a wide range of activities for all members of the family. Take advantage of scenic hiking trails, from easy out and back trails along the waterfront to more moderate terrain on longer loops. If you are a biker, the mountain bike trails at LKNSP offer more than 30 miles of adventures!

Five Things We Love About Fall in Mooresville

Summer Fun in Mooresville

Experience Summer Fun in Mooresville

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy all that Mooresville, NC has to offer. Connect with your Outdoor Enthusiast on beautiful Lake Norman, channel your inner speed demon at GoPro Motorplex, or practice your selfies at any of our Instagrammable Places around Mooresville. No matter what your idea of fun is, we know you’ll find your perfect self here.

Soak Up The Fun on Lake Norman

With more than 500 miles of shoreline, Lake Norman is the largest manmade lake in North Carolina. Whether you like the speed of a jet ski or prefer to take a more leisurely pace, you can find a watersport that suits your mood on Lake Norman.

Spend the day at Lake Norman State Park, which offers year-round boating, fishing, camping, hiking and mountain bike trails. You can rent Stand Up Paddleboards, kayaks and canoes to enjoy the beautiful shoreline around the park. There’s also a swim area with a 125-yard-long sand beach that’s open from April to October.

If you want to enjoy other areas of the lake, look into water toy rentals. You can rent paddleboards, kayaks, jet skis, and boats for partial or full days out on the lake. A really fun adventure is a sunset paddle on a SUP or kayak, offered nightly from 7:30 – 9:30 from What’s Up Watersports. For a truly unique experience, schedule a wakeboarding lesson with a professional wakeboarder at STP Wake.

Take a Walk on the Wild Side

Mooresville is home to the Lazy 5 Ranch and Zootastic Park. At the privately owned Lazy 5 Ranch, you and your family can embark on a drive-through safari featuring over 700 animals. Drive your own vehicle or book a horse-drawn wagon ride, and feed the animals along the way.

Also privately owned, Zootastic Park offers educational programs and animal encounters. Take the whole family for a leisurely stroll through the park, and visit the many animal species, including Arabian camels, kangaroos, ring-tailed lemurs, tigers and much more. Taking selfies with the giraffes is a visitor favorite at Zootastic Park!

Rev Up Your Engines

Experience exhilarating racing action at the world-class kart track at GoPro Motorplex. This track was built by racing professionals and modeled after the famous and historic Kartdromo Parma circuit in Italy and is sure to get your adrenaline pumping!

If indoor racing is more your style, or if you have younger kids, then head to PIT Indoor Kart Track, which features the nation’s largest indoor kart track. The facility also features entertainment in addition to the karts, like a laser tag arena, a rock climbing wall, bumper cars and a black light mini-golf course.

Once you have filled your need for speed, be sure to check out the race shops in Mooresville, including JR Motorsports, Kasey Kahne Racing, Kyle Busch Motorsports, and Team Penske, to see the teams preparing the race cars for the next race.

Swim in a Super Cool Rock Quarry

If you need to cool off, head to the Quarry at Carrigan Farms, where you can swim in a quarry that was mined for its granite back in the 1960s. This natural, spring-fed body of water is 25 feet deep and surrounded by towering cliffs of granite. If you’re feeling brave you can swing out on a rope swing from one of the cliffs, another of our favorite places for Instagram!  Check their website for hours and information.

Soar to New Heights

If you want to gain some altitude and get a good workout while doing so, check out Cliff Hangers, a climbing facility that features indoor and outdoor climbing walls, bouldering, and a kids climbing area. With climbing walls up to 50 feet, you can get an adrenaline rush as you climb for the top.

Kick Back with a Beer

A day of summer fun would not be complete without a good dinner and beverage to cap off your day. Visit our restaurants page for a complete list of dining options sure to suit every taste. And try out one of our local breweries, Ghostface Brewing, Beer Lab, or King Canary Brewing for a relaxing end to the day.

No matter what speed you choose for your summer fun in Mooresville, we’re sure you’re going to love our town!

Summer Fun in Mooresville

Fall in Love with Mooresville

Fall in Love with Mooresville

There are so many things for visitors to love about Mooresville: the beautiful sunsets over Lake Norman, the unique swimming hole at Carrigan Farms, adrenaline inducing action of karting at GoPro Motorplex. While summer in Mooresville is filled with fun activities and things to do, for those of us at the Visitors Center, we tend to love autumn here the best. Maybe it’s the promise of cooler weather, or all of the awesome festivals, or perhaps it’s because of everything PUMPKIN! Whatever the reason, we wanted to share some of our favorite things about Fall in Mooresville.

Get a workout on the water
Most people think fall means starting to bundle up in sweaters, but here in North Carolina, there are still plenty of nice warm days for enjoying Lake Norman. In fact, many of our residents use their boats and water toys almost year round. If you want to try your hand at watersports like Stand Up Paddleboarding or kayaking, fall is a great time to do so. Not only are the temperatures great for outdoor sports, but in some places and at times, you could have the lake almost to yourself. You can rent paddle boards or kayaks at Lake Norman State Park as well as other places around Mooresville. Check out our watersports page for more information.

Hike or bike through the woods
Lake Norman State Park is not only great for watersports, it is a great place to hike or mountain bike. With more than 30 miles of trails, moderate elevation changes and gorgeous scenery, it’s easy to see why Lake Norman State Park has one of the highest visitor rates in the state, with nearly one million visitors in 2017! The Lake Shore Trail offers beautiful water views and was voted a must see trail. Once the leaves start turning, you are in for an awesome display of nature on your walk, run, or ride.

Pick a Pumpkin at Carrigan Farms
Pumpkin. Isn’t that the real reason everyone loves fall? From pumpkin lattes to ice cream to beer, the fruit that screams autumn turns up almost everywhere. Whether you want to decorate your porch or use it in a recipe, what better way to acquire your pumpkin than to pick it straight out of the patch? Better yet, take a tractor drawn hay ride to get to the patch. Does it get any better than that?

Let Your Imagination Soar
2018 will mark the 45th year for the Carolina BalloonFest! This must-see event fills the sky with colorful balloons twice per day (weather permitting) to the delight of festival goers. There is a ton of entertainment for attendees, including an artisan village and marketplace, wine and craft beer tasting garden, live entertainment, food vendors, kids zone and more! You can even book a balloon ride for the ultimate experience. Be sure to take your camera and tag us in your photos! (@visitmooresville)

Tap Into Your Wild Side
Though the animal parks near Mooresville are open year round, fall is a great time to visit, as the animals enjoy the cooler temperatures as much as we do! At the Lazy 5 Ranch Drive Thru Safari, get up close and personal to more than 750 domestic and exotic animals from six continents. Take the horse drawn wagon ride through the park to get the full experience. The park hosts a Fall Festival for the month of October, included in the admission price. See how high you can climb on the straw castle, or try your hand at the pumpkin slingshot. It’s great family fun!


At Zootastic Park, giraffe selfies are a favorite with visitors! You can feed and pet these gentle giants, as well as many other animals around the zoo. You can also purchase animal encounters where you can play with animals such as Fennec Fox, Lion cubs, Kangaroo or Ring Tail Lemurs. Zootastic also hosts a Fall Festival. This year’s date is October 27-28.

Get Crafty
Thanks to some awesome local breweries, experiencing craft beer in Mooresville is easier than ever! Visit the beautifully decorated and happening scene at King Canary Brewing. Owners Matt and Andrea wanted the taproom to be a family place where people could gather and relax, and they have done just that. The outdoor patio area is perfect for the coming cooler temps, and is a great place for kids to play while the adults socialize. There is usually a food truck on hand for meals, and they also serve snacks such as popcorn and pretzels from the bar.

One of the first breweries in Mooresville, Ghostface Brewing prides itself on creating unique and tasty beers – and features up to 20 at any given time. They also serve mead and ciders as well as pizza from a brick oven. Housed in a quaint building with exposed brick walls just a couple blocks off Main Street, this brewery is a popular local hangout. Check their events page for some fun happenings like yoga classes and the Mooresville Artisanal Marketplace where you can sip and shop.

OnTap Crafty Brews is located in the heart of historic downtown, in a corner building with a great view of the Main Street scene. Built in 1907 as a bank, the building’s original vault was converted into a beer cooler in the renovation, preserving a piece of history and adding to the “cool” factor of the bar. OnTap features 23 taps of craft beers and ciders, as well as a prosecco and wine tap. Order up some toasted sandwiches if you’re hungry, and strike up a conversation with other bar patrons for a laid back experience.


Get Your Scare On!

If your idea of fun is to walk (or run) down a totally dark trail with creepy clowns and freaks with chainsaws jumping out at you, then you will probably get a kick out of Scarrigan Farms! Not for the faint of heart, the one-mile trail promises to be one of the scariest that you can encounter, and it is the perfect way to welcome in the Halloween season. Tickets are sold at the gate only and are first come, first served. Check the website for the full schedule of dates and times. And don’t get into that creepy clown’s van!

We want to know what you love about Fall in Mooresville! Please tag us in your photos as you enjoy the festivals, attractions, and activities this fall! @visitmooresville #visitmooresville

Fall in Love with Mooresville

Summer Fun In Mooresville, NC!

Summer Fun in Mooresville NC!

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy all that Mooresville, NC has to offer. From hiking, paddleboarding, or kayaking at Lake Norman State Park to experiencing exotic animals up close at Lazy 5 Ranch, plenty of exciting adventures await you this summer in Race City USA!

Soak up the Fun on Lake Norman
With more than 500 miles of shoreline, Lake Norman is the largest manmade lake in North Carolina. Whether you like the speed of a jet ski or prefer to take a more leisurely pace, you can find a watersport that suits your mood on Lake Norman.

Spend the day at Lake Norman State Park, which offers year-round boating, fishing, camping, hiking and mountain bike trails. You can rent Stand Up Paddleboards, kayaks and canoes to enjoy the beautiful shoreline around the park. There’s also a swim area with a 125-yard-long sand beach that’s open from April to October.

If you want to enjoy paddleboarding and windsurfing on other areas of the lake, look into rentals from Hard Core Sports and Swell Board Shop during the summer months. Check out What’s Up Watersports for jet skis, boats, paddleboards and kayak rentals – available April through early October. And for a truly unique experience, take in a sightseeing and dinner cruise on Lake Norman aboard the Catawba Queen or Lady of the Lake at Queens Landing.

Take A Walk On The Wild Side
Mooresville is home to the Lazy 5 Ranch and Zootastic Park. At the privately owned Lazy 5 Ranch, you and your family can embark on a drive-through safari featuring over 700 animals. Drive your own vehicle or book a horse-drawn wagon ride, and feed the animals along the way.

Also privately owned, Zootastic Park offers educational programs and animal encounters. Take the whole family for a leisurely stroll through the park, and visit the many animal species, including Arabian camels, kangaroos, ring-tailed lemurs, tigers and much more. Taking selfies with the giraffes is a visitor favorite at Zootastic Park!

Rev Up Your Engines
Experience exhilarating racing action at the world-class kart track at GoPro Motorplex. This track was built by racing professionals and modeled after the famous and historic Kartdromo Parma circuit in Italy and is sure to get your adrenaline pumping!

If indoor racing is more your style, or if you have younger kids, then head to PIT Indoor Kart Track, which features the nation’s largest indoor kart track. The facility also features entertainment in addition to the karts, like a laser tag arena, a rock climbing wall, bumper cars and a black light mini-golf course.

Once you have filled your need for speed, be sure to check out the race shops in Mooresville, including JR Motorsports, Kasey Kahne Racing, Kyle Busch Motorsports, and Team Penske, to see the teams preparing the race cars for the next race.

Swim in a Super Cool Rock Quarry
For a truly unique summer experience, head to the Quarry at Carrigan Farms, where you can swim in a quarry that was mined for its granite back in the 1960s. This natural, spring-fed body of water is 25 feet deep and surrounded by towering cliffs of granite. Jump from one of the rocks if you’re brave! Check their website for hours and information.

Soar to New Heights
If you want to gain some altitude and get a good workout while doing so, check out Cliff Hangers, a climbing facility that features indoor and outdoor climbing walls, bouldering, and a kids climbing area. With climbing walls up to 50 feet, you can get an adrenaline rush as you climb for the top.

Kick Back with a Beer
A day of summer fun would not be complete without a good dinner and beverage to cap off your day. Visit our restaurants page for a complete list of dining options sure to suit every taste. And try out Ghostface Brewing, On Tap Crafty Brews, or King Canary Brewing for a relaxing end to the day.

No matter what speed you choose for your summer fun in Mooresville, we’re sure you’re going to love our town!

Summer Fun In Mooresville, NC!

Welcome Spring with these Fun Events and Activities

Welcome Spring with these Fun Events and Activities!

Spring is here and the warmer weather and longer days are the perfect time to take in some great events and activities around Mooresville.

April 13 – Uncorked & Artsy

This fun evening event features wine and beer tastings at 15 downtown Mooresville businesses. The tastings event is $25 for advance tickets and $30 at the door. In addition, there will be musical acts inside and outside, as well as artists displaying and selling their works. The music and arts portion is a free event. To purchase tasting tickets online visit www.downtownmooresville.com/buy-tickets.html or you can purchase at downtown businesses.

April 14 – Food Truck Festival One of the more popular events that runs spring through fall, the #FoodTruck Festival is a great way to sample good food and drinks from area trucks. Bring a chair and stay for the evening as you enjoy gourmet fare and live music. The event takes place once a month from April through October on Main Street, #Mooresville. Details at www.downtownmooresville.com/signature-events.html

April 16 – Pick Your Own at Carrigan Farms If you want to experience picking fresh produce from the garden without the work of tending your own garden plot, head over to Carrigan Farms where you can pick your own fruit and vegetables. Asparagus kicks off the season, with strawberries following in late April or May (depending on the weather conditions). It’s great family fun and a learning experience for kids on how and where food is grown.

April 28 – Lakefront Hops Fest at LangTree

This free event will feature beer, wine and hard cider tents, two live bands, food venders, a kids zone, raffles and prizes and more. A great way to enjoy beers from area breweries all in one place! Details at www.facebook.com/events/152875578719140/.

April 29 – Dale Earnhardt Day The annual birthday celebration to honor the late Dale Earnhardt takes place at Dale Earnhardt, Inc.

May 3 – LangTree LIVE!

This popular, 22-week concert series runs every Thursday from May to September, 7-9PM. Each week features a different musical act ranging from 80’s pop, alternative rock to the classic sounds of Billy Joel and The Eagles tributes. D9 Brewery will be on site each week at LangTree Live serving up the latest in craft beer selections. Be sure to get there early and visit LangTree shops and restaurants, and bring your chair to relax on the lawn and enjoy the show. As always, admission is FREE!

May 12 – Race City Festival

The Race City Festival is a celebration of  Lake Norman area arts & culture and is held outdoors along Main and Broad Streets in Downtown Mooresville. The Festival features family fun areas, hundreds of vendors, food, antiques, arts & crafts, kids areas, dancing, live entertainment, and more! About 200 vendors, two stages with live entertainment, two food courts, beer garden, kids games, face painting, street performers, mascots. free parking & free admission. Downtown merchants, eateries, art galleries and businesses will also be open.

May 21 – Race City Week

Race City Week in Mooresville celebrates everything racing! Events at race shops feature driver meet and greets, shop tours, and more. Race fans in town for the #CocaCola600 and #600Festival should plan a day in Mooresville, Race City USA! Check our event calendar for updated events during Race City Week.

May 22 – Little 600

One of the most popular events during the #600Festival, the #Little600 gives fans a chance to watch drivers battle it out on the GoPro® Motorplex kart track for bragging rights. Past champions include Bubba Wallace and Cory Lajoie. Fans also have a chance for autographs and photos with the drivers. Click for more details.

Lake Norman State Park – Canoe, Kayak, and StandUp Paddleboard rentals

Enjoy swimming at the family friendly swimming area, or rent a water toy and get out on the lake! Hourly rentals are available for canoes, kayaks, paddleboats and standup paddleboards. Availability and hours are seasonal, please check the Lake Norman State Park webpage for details.

Welcome Spring with these Fun Events and Activities