Rowan County parks and area museums
• Dan Nicholas Park, 6800 Bringle Ferry Road — Walking trails, paddle boats, miniature golf, miniature trains, carousel, gem mine, playgrounds, family camping, picnic shelters, splash pad, petting zoo. 704-216-7800. www.dannicholas.net
• Ellis Park, 3541 Old Mocksville Road — 26 acres of ball fields, tennis courts, volleyball court, shelters, playground, event center, walking trail. 704-216-7783.
• Sloan Park, 550 Sloan Road, Mt. Ulla — Off NC Hwy 150 approximately 10 miles west of Salisbury. Features Kerr Mill, an 1823 grist mill.
• Gold Hill Mines Historic Park 735 St. Stephens Church Road — Historic tours available by appointment: 704-267-9439, www.HistoricGoldHill.com
• Gold Hill Rail Trail — Hiking, biking trail begins at Gold Hill Mines Historic Park, continues into Cabarrus County. 704-267-9439.
• Dunn’s Mountain Nature and History Preserve, 1640 Dunn’s Mtn. Road — Trail walks, overlooks, see 120 miles in most directions, blacksmith shop display, Saturday-Sunday shuttle service, 704-216-7803.
• Tweetsie Railroad Wild West theme park, Blowing Rock — July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza; frontier fun all day, stay late until the park closes at 9 p.m. , fireworks begin 9:30. July 4th also marks Tweetsie’s own 56th birthday. The park opened on July 4, 1957 with a one-mile ride that took guests to a picnic area and then backed up into the Tweetsie train station. NC’s first theme park features live shows, amusement rides, concerts, a three-mile Wild West steam locomotive adventure. Tweetsie.com, 877-893-3874.
More than 1,800 museums nationwide will offer free admission to active duty military and their families from Memorial Day, May 27, through Labor Day, Sept. 2, 2013 through Blue Star Museums. Reynolda House Museum of American Art, Winston-Salem, is a local participant. For a complete list, see http://www.bluestarfam.org/Programs/Blue_Star_Museums
• NC Transportation Museum, 411 S. Salisbury Ave., Spencer — See www.nctrans.org for train ride schedule and admission information with and without train rides. 704-636-2889, 877-NCTMFUN, www.nctrans.org
• Spencer Doll and Toy Museum, 108 4th St., Spencer — Antique, vintage, modern collectible dolls, antique, vintage toys, train set, model tractor trailers, John Deere vehicles. Just steps from the NC Transportation Museum • 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday. $5 adults, $4 seniors, $3 children. 704-762-9359, www.spencerdollandtoymuseum.com
• Rowan Museum, 202 N. Main St. — The Korean War: Remembering Rowan’s Veterans. July 27 is the 60th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War in 1953. On display will be Korean War items from Rowan soldiers and plans are to collect oral histories from our veterans during the exhibit. Exhibit closes Sept. 8. Museum hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday, 1-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Contributions accepted. 704-633-5946, email@example.com, www.rowanmuseum.org
• Utzman-Chambers House, 116 S. Jackson St. — Artifacts of the late Honorable Spruce Macay (1755–1808), lawyer and Superior Court judge, perhaps best known for instructing our country’s seventh president, Andrew Jackson. Open 1-4 p.m. Saturday. $3 adults, $1.50 students. 704-633-5946, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.rowanmuseum.org
• Old Stone House, Granite Quarry — Two-story Georgian stone house completed in 1766. Located on Old Stone House Road in Granite Quarry. 1-4 Saturday, Sunday, $3 for adults and $1.50 for students. 704-633-5946, email@example.com, www.rowanmuseum.org
• 1820 Dr. Josephus Hall House, 226 S. Jackson St. — Exhibit through December: “Captive in a Foreign Land: Life and Death in a Civil War Prison Camp,” Saturdays/Sundays 1-4 p.m., 704-636-0103, www.historicsalisbury.org
• Historic Rockwell Museum, 102 E. Main St. — Sundays 2-4 p.m. , 704-279-4979.
• Price of Freedom Museum, Old Patterson School building, China Grove — Sundays 3-5 p.m. and by appointment. American war memorial dedicated tom en and women of the armed services. Free. Intersection of Weaver and Patterson Roads. 704-857-7474, www.priceoffreedom.us
• China Grove Roller Mill Agricultural Museum — Original equipment in place, unique displays, events, mill tours; also by appointment. Open house second Sundays 2-4 p.m. April-Nov. except holidays. Free. 704-433-3912. www.hist-society-srowan.com
• NC Music Hall of Fame Museum, 109 West A St., Kannapolis — Honors musicians, singers, songwriters and producers from North Carolina. In the renovated old Kannapolis Jailhouse Building. 10 a.m.-noon, 2-4 p.m., Monday-Friday, admission free. 704-934-2320, www.NorthCarolinaMusicHallofFame.org
• Historic Gold Hill/Gold Hill Mines Historic Park — 19th century living history interpretative displays reflect life in the 1800s gold mining boom town. Free. 704-279-5674, www.HistoricGoldHill. com
• Reed Gold Mine historic site, 9621 Reed Mine Road, off Highway 200 near Locust — Southeastern Cabarrus County,12 miles southeast of Concord. Panning area is open April 1-Oct. 31. Without panning, there is no fee for the site. Museum, visitor center, underground mine tour, operating stamp mill, panning area. Museum is free, panning tickets $3. 704-721-4653, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.nchistoricsites.org/ reed/
• Gregory Creek Homestead and walking trails, 1335 Museum Road, Statesville — Statesville’s heritage site. 704-873-4734, www.iredellmuseums.org.
• Fort Dobbs State Historic Site, 438 Fort Dobbs Road, Statesville — The only North Carolina Historic Site associated with the French and Indian War (1754-1763). Free, open Tuesday-Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. 704-873-5882, www.fortdobbs.org
• Town Creek Indian Mound, Mount Gilead — NC’s only state historic site dedicated to American Indian heritage. Town Creek Mound between NC 73 and NC 731. 910-439-6802, email@example.com, www.towncreek.nchistoricsites.org
• Discovery Place, 301 N. Tryon St., uptown Charlotte — Extended summer hours through Sept. 2: Monday-Friday 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.–6 p.m., and Sunday noon–5 p.m. • Animal Grossology, opening June 1, interactive exhibition that takes a slightly different view of the animal kingdom and some of the more disgusting things animals do. Free with Museum admission. • New this summer:Animalopolis, opening June 1 in the IMAX® Dome Theatre, lighthearted and imaginary look at a variety of creature. Tickets/showtimes at discoveryplace.org/imax or 704-372-6261 x300. Note: There is an additional admission charge for IMAX movies.
• Discovery Place KIDS Huntersville, 105 Gilead Road — 704-372-6261, discoveryplaceKIDS.org
• Mint Museum of Art, 2730 Randolph Road, Charlotte and Mint Museum Uptown at Levine Center for the Arts, 500 South Tryon St., Charlotte — 704-337-2000, www.mintmuseum.org
• Charlotte Nature Museum, 1658 Sterling Road, Charlotte — 704-372-6261, charlottenaturemuseum.org
• Historic Latta Plantation, 5225 Sample Road, Huntersville — Circa 1800 cotton plantation and living history farm with endangered breeds of historic livestock. The last remaining Catawba River Plantation open to the public. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays. Free with regular site admission. 5 and under free. 704-875-2312, lattaplantation.org
• Old Salem, Winston-Salem — Faithfully preserved buildings, costumed interpreters, craftsmen, historical garden and horticultural programs. 336-721-7300, www.oldsalem.org
• Reynolda House Museum and Reynolda House Museum of American Art, 2250 Reynolda Road, Winston-Salem — Masterpieces in the museum, also house, gardens and village feature public garden, dining, shopping,walking trails. 336-758-5150, reynoldahouse.org
• Children’s Museum of Winston-Salem, 390 S. Liberty St. — 336-723-9111, childrensmuseumofws.org
• SECCA — Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, 750 Marguerite Drive, Winston-Salem. 336-725-1904, www.secca.org
• Natural Science Center of Greensboro,4301 Lawndale Drive — 336-288-3769, www.natsci.org
• Greensboro Children’s Museum, 220 N. Church St. — Hands-on, interactive museum for children (infancy to 10 years of age) and families. 336-574-2898, www.gcmuseum.com
• NC Museum of Art, 2110 Blue Ridge Road, Raleigh — Free general admission. Charge for some concerts, films, , performances. 919-839-NCMA, www.ncartmuseum.org
• Contemporary Art Museum, 409 W. Martin St., Raleigh — 919-513-0946, camraleigh.org
• NC Museum of History, 5 E. Edenton St., Raleigh — Explore more than 14,000 years of the state’s history. Free general admission. Across from the State Capitol. 919-807-7900, ncmuseumofhistory.org or Facebook
• NC Museum of Natural Sciences, 11 W. Jones St., Raleigh — Four floors of live animals, hands-on activities, programs: look at the natural world through NC’s geography, prehistoric past, geology, plants, animals. Free general admission, cover charge for special exhibits and 3D Theater. 919-733-7450, www.naturalsciences.org
• NC Museum of Life and Science, 433 Murray Ave., Durham — 919-220-5429, www.ncmls.org
• The North Carolina Pottery Center, 233 E. Ave., Seagrove — Permanent exhibition: traces NC pottery from pre-historic Native American work through 21st century. 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday, 336-873-8430, www.ncpotterycenter.org