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City Walks in South End

What makes a city? Is it the roads, the buildings, the art? Or is it the people whose lives unfold in the place and who give it meaning? Jane Jacobs, the great urbanist and writer, was a great advocate for people-centered cities in a time when superhighways and skyscrapers dominated city visions. Today she is honored with a movement called Jane’s Walks, where anyone can offer to give a tour of the places they love in our great city. In Charlotte, these walks span the whole month of May in a festival called City Walks.

There are six–six!–City Walks planned in and around South End, all led by neighborhood leaders and advocates to share different aspects of art, history and community in our walkable area.

Check out the list below of walks in Historic Wilmore, the Gold District, and throughout South End:

Historic Wilmore – Friday, May 10th from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

As one of the six designated historic neighborhoods in the city, the tour will take you to explore locations key to the development and history of Wilmore. From adaptive re-use of historic buildings to redevelopment, this walking tour is open to all who wish to join. Beginning and ending at different locations, the tour will start at the Wilmore Community Center and will finish outside of YUME.

The Gold District – Saturday, May 11th from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Did you know the first Gold Rush wasn’t in California, but right here in Charlotte? Home to some of the most prolific gold mines in the area, explore the neighborhood’s merchants, restaurants and artists while seeing some of the colorful and historic figures from our past. Start the Gold District Tour at the corner of South Church St. and Lincoln St.

South End History #1: Rail and Reinvention – Tuesday, May 14th from 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

The South End History walking tours will be focused on visiting historic landmarks and hearing stories about times of reinvention and innovation that have made the area what it is today. Covering Atherton Mill, the Charlotte + SC Railroad and the Lance Factory, this one-hour tour will start at the East-West Station on the light rail.

Charlotte Rail Trail – Tuesday, May 21st from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Dive into the history of the Rail Trail and the stories behind the Trail’s art and activity installations including: Color Forest, Edna’s Porch and the Magic Carpet Mural. This tour will meet at the corner of Camden Rd. and W Tremont Ave. and is available in a Spanish translation upon request.

Amplify the Signal: Blighted Boxes to Beautiful Beacons – Sunday, May 26th from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Follow this tour to learn about the unlikely transformation of traffic signal boxes into beautiful works of art by Laurie Smithwick. The Charlotte-based artist will be one of the tour guides to share how this project came about and how these boxes are part of a series of placemaking features throughout the city. This tour will meet at 10:00 a.m. at Lincoln’s Haberdashery where you will have the option to bike or walk.

Click here for more information on each of the tours.

*Note, several tours are sold out, but you can join the waitlist. Please do! If there is enough interest in the waitlist, we will work to coordinate another free tour, and will use the waitlist to get in touch.

Creativity abounds in South End and you can find art around every corner: on walls and windows, under your feet and above your head. Click here for your guide to public art in South End.