Charlotte Relocation

Calling on all my Charlotte Hokies!

My wife, two sons and I are moving to Charlotte, NC tomorrow. My wife received a job offer with Collins Aerospace down there at the beginning of March. We put the wheels in motion before all this Coronavirus madness started and nothing is stopping this train. We will be holed up temporarily with my in-laws in Huntersville until we can find a place to buy, but I wanted to begin getting recommendations from the Charlotte Hokie crowd on best areas to live, fishing spots, breweries, and aquarium stores (if there are any fellow "fish nerds" out there).

This whole experience has been beyond stressful with everything going on but we are excited about the opportunities that lay ahead. Let me know what you Charlotte Hokies love and we should look for!


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Matthews is a really nice area (southeast Charlotte) as well as Huntersville. Depending on where you and/or your wife will be commuting to, Waxhaw and Weddington in Union County just outside of Charlotte are really nice and have good public schools. Breweries are a dime a dozen here, so damn many of them. I'm not a huge brewery guy myself, but I'd have to plug NoDa, Wooden Robot and Birdsong as my personal favorites. Once this quarantine shit passes, take your wife out to Kindred in Davidson since you're already up on the north side of town, that place is elite as shit and not incredibly expensive. Check out Charlotte Hokies dot com to get involved with the alumni group and be aware of events that are going on. Welcome to the Queen City. Moved here 4 years ago and don't plan on leaving for a long time.

I like Fort Mill as well (lower taxes in SC)

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Fort Mill is nice, but i'd have to heavily consider the commute aspect before living there full time. There's almost no efficient way to get to SC without having to use 77 and it's a parking lot headed south starting at 4 PM. Great area for sure though.

I don't live there, go a couple times a yr. can recommend resident culture and heist for hazy IPAs. Burial from avl should all over too, great IPAs, Saisons & stouts. If I lived there, they'd be my go to places.

Wooden robot I like too, but not nearly as much.

Plenty of places I haven't had there, and all depends what you like, and how easy to acquire. Salud is a great spot in NoDa.


"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

I live in the Mooresville/Lake Norman area, so a little far away from town if you're going to be working in the city. However, if you're working in the northern burbs it's worth a look. We love our area, schools are really great, and housing is pretty affordable.

In terms of beer, Charlotte has a great scene. My personal favorite is NoDa Brewing, along with Olde Mecklenburg, Birdsong, Wooden Robot and King Canary (local microbrewery in Mooresville).

I'm not much of a fisherman, but for all outdoor activities you can't go wrong at Lake Norman on the north side or Lake Wylie on the south side. Lake Norman State Park is in Troutman, NC and has camping, fishing, hiking, etc. We take our kids there at least once a month.

Feel free to reach out - @VTMikeO on the twittersphere.

Good luck!

I'd love a house on the lake, but I think we could only afford something that needed considerable work.

Where's the beef?

Me and you both! I grew up going to Lake Norman fairly frequently. Wish I had the cash back in '08 to scoop some lakefront land.

However, Mountain Island Lake which is NW Charlotte and Lake Wylie across the boarder in SC are decent alternatives at a much better price point.

Mrs O and I joke that we are lake-adjacent. You can see LKN from our neighborhood and from my daughter's bedroom window, but we are not lake front. The difference between lakefront and rest of Mooresville/Lake Norman is a stark reminder of the real estate saying "location location location"

+1 for King Canary in Mooresville. Worth the trip from anywhere in the CLT area. I've found from 5 years living here, that if a brewery isn't making good beer, it won't survive very long. I've seen a few come and go because the beer was mediocre.

Another plus - they are run by good people. Husband/wife founded it, husband died suddenly last year. Wife is continuing the business and the entire staff are great.

They are selling online for pickup during this lockdown, and I have made an effort to buy 2-3 crowlers each week and leave a nice tip.

I moved to charlotte from DC in late 2017 (day after we beat WVU at FedEx)! Feel free to reach out to me on DM's on twitter @ljbranson and we can have a chat. I have a ton of recommendations on everything except fish stuff.

"Now Miami wants to talk about it." *Cue Enter Sandman*

I live in Gaston County. Belmont/Cramerton area is really nice; especially if you like fishing, kayaking, etc.

NoDa is cool but real millennial and hipster. Lots of good food and beer though.

I just sit on my couch and b*tch. - HokieChemE2016

watch out for those youths!

Pour some Beer on it

We have been in Charlotte for about 5 years now and just bought our first home in South Charlotte. Be prepared for a very competitive market if you are looking inside the 485 belt, especially in the better school districts!

You really can't go wrong neighborhood wise within city limits as long as you stick East of 77 and West of Independence Blvd. That wedge from uptown to Ballantyne-Pineville is going give you everything you could want and there are all types of price ranges to be found.

I agree with the above, I believe last count there was close to 100 breweries open in Mecklenburg county so you will just have to start sampling. But the bigger names are covered above. The is whole area called "LoSo" (I hate this acronym) it's a re-purposed industrial park with 7-8 breweries all within walking distance. That's where you will find Ole Mecklenburg Brewery. (Personal favorite, especially if you want to take little ones).

Fishing is all over the place Catawba river runs from South from Lake Norman past the White Water Center (another great spot that is relatively unique) and down to Lake Wylie.

Hope the move goes well, Huntersville is great, along with Davidson and Mooresville. However commute is a pain in the ass if you have commute to Charlotte everyday. If this is the case the toll roads will save you time and currently cost you about $5 one way.

$5 one way is a super bargain compared to the tolls up here in the DC area!

Where's the beef?

For sure, it's variable so if there is a lot of traffic the price goes up. I currently commute from Uptown to Lake Norman and I haven't seen it higher than that yet.

But I have heard horror stories of cities with similar setups and the prices were outrageous. Just opened here in the Summer 2019.

Try $40+ for six miles during peak rush hour

Where's the beef?

i am very thankful NJ has not gone to a variable toll model -- the two main toll roads don't spike or anything. One has a "waypoint" system where there are tolls every so often, and the other has a "check in, check out" system where it's a set price from entrance to exit. I still pay like 240 bucks a month in tolls though for my current commute

"Why gobble gobble chumps asks such good questions, I will never know." - TheFifthFuller


12 year Charlottean here. Lots of good advice given above.

If you have a family, you're either going to want to say up where you are (Huntersville/Lake Norman) or venture to South Charlotte (Ballantyne, Matthews, Arboretum area, etc) or Union County (Weddington/Waxhaw). I've been a South Charlotte guy for a long time and just recently moved to Union County. All of the aforementioned are great options and all have pretty good schools and tons of amenities (shopping, groceries, bars, parks, etc).

General rule of thumb is that the further you get from center city, the further your dollar will go. There are a few areas closer into center city where you can go cheaper, but it will be in more of an "up and coming" neighborhood which could be fine, but depends on your family's situation and needs. Of course, just like any city, if you have money to spend, you can make things work pretty much anywhere you want and be fine :)

Not going to be much help on breweries, but I will say the close proximity to the mountains and the new river results in some pretty awesome canoeing and fishing on the oppressive hot summer days.

If you have any questions about the South Charlotte or Union County areas throw em in here. I can fill you in no problem.

Thanks for the feedback everyone. We'll likely be in the burbs outside the 485 belt since we have four and almost two-year old. We've been looking at Zillow and there seems to be plenty of options in the Huntersville/Mount Holly area which also happens to be not too far from my wife's office (near airport on westside of town) or so says google maps with no traffic.

We have family and friends in the area that we have visited so not entirely unfamiliar, but want to get as much input as possible so we don't miss anything. We just finished packing the uhaul with the last of our stuff so it's almost go time!

Where's the beef?

Travel Safe!

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

If your wife's office is near Huntersville, stay there. It's affordable, close enough to Charlotte, and lots to do.

I don't hang in Charlotte too much, but when I do, I try to hit the Rhino Market and Deli. It's a Leonard Lock. You will meet the sandwich you want to marry there.

Leonard. Duh.

Lived in West Charlotte for 6 years. Mt. Holly and Belmont are both fantastic options. Puts you right by the Whitewater Center which is an absolute blast, by far my favorite thing about Charlotte.

The Charlotte Alumni Group is very active and spans many years. I moved to Minneapolis last year and miss Charlotte so much. Clean city, loads of activities, proximity to mountains & beach, lake activities, and it's not a terrible drive to Blacksburg if you want to catch a game.

Best of luck in your move!

clym on

Minneapolis is nice too, except it has 9 months of winter, 3 weeks of spring and 3 weeks of fall.


"My advice to you... is to start drinking heavily."-John Blutarsky

My wife and I lived in Charlotte for a little while, and while I know you didn't ask about food, I've got to recommend Bad Daddy's for Burgers and MidWood Smokehouse for BBQ. Honorable mention for Mac's Speed Shop BBQ. We still go back to visit from time to time; if anyone can recommend a better burger or BBQ place, please do!

Thanks man. I did sleep on the food recommendations. I have been to Bad Daddy's actually and may need to re-evaluate our home search to make sure we are within a reasonable distance. Thank you!

Where's the beef?

Bill Spoons BBQ is easily the best in Charlotte.

Can't go wrong with either BBQ joint, but I would flip those in order of preference!! Another great burger option is Moo and Brew in Plaza Midwood!

I moved to Dilowrth, a mile outside of uptown, in 2016 and love the location. If you're a professional sports fan, Hornets tickets are easy and cheap to acquire, Panthers tickets drop as the season goes on because they are trash, and Knights games are a ton of fun. As mentioned above Bad Daddy's and Macs have great food and a good atmosphere.

Another white bronco? The first one didn't go too far.

I don't live there, but I have family in the Charlotte area, and couldn't recommend a place to look for a home. It's all to crowded for my country ass. But I can strongly recommend Olde Mecklenburg Brewery. When all this COVID business settles down, go grab a baltic porter at their beer garden. You won't regret it.

“You got one guy going boom, one guy going whack, and one guy not getting in the endzone.”
― John Madden (describing VT's offense?)

The Baltic Porter is their best beer!

I live in the university area of Charlotte. My favorite area of Charlotte is NODA and that's where my fav brewery is too - Divine Barrel. There are many good breweries in the area. Huntersville is a nice area too and that's where the best fish store is - Upscale Aquatics.

Thanks. The Upscale website looked legit. Time to get the dream custom aquarium to go with the house!

Where's the beef?

Heist Brewery in NoDa is dope. Highly recommend.

Thanks again for all the suggestions everyone. We have been down here for two weeks as of today. Shacked up with the in-laws.

We found a house in a new development in Davidson called Davidson East, right off Rt. 73 Davidson-Concord Rd. It's pretty much just far eastern Huntersville. We close on May 27. We have two little dudes so schools were big on the priority list. We did look at a few places in Matthews and Belmont but decided being closer to Grandma and Grandpa was more ideal.

Looking forward to things getting back to normal so we can get out and really explore the area, and hopefully meet up with some fellow Hokies for games this fall.

Where's the beef?

Glad you landed in the north CLT/LKN area. I think there are quite a few TKPers in the LKN area. I'd love to get a game watching thing together, even if only for the really big games. But it might be in 2021.

But more importantly, there are great private schools in that area and the CMS North learning community is top notch with a few individual exceptions. Sauce: My wife teaches at Bailey Middle in Cornelius. Thinking of sending our daughter through her feeder school to get them on the same schedule, even though we live in Mooresville which has one of the best school systems in the state.

Our new neighborhood is in the Bailey Middle and Hough HS territory.

Where's the beef?

Very cool. If they ever take chorus or music (history of rock/bucket drumming) they'll have my wife. Either way she usually makes friends with all of the kids whose parents are Hokies. Every teacher has their alma mater listed outside their room on a profile sheet and hers has 2 big ol VT logos on it. Kids stop by just to tell her their mom or dad or both went to Tech.

Cool. Our oldest is only entering Kindergarten so we got a ways to go until middle school. At least that's what I keep telling myself that, hah.

Saw a guy cutting his lawn in our in-laws neighborhood wearing VT gear while I was out running on Tuesday. Should have yelled "Go Hokies!" but it was near the end of the run and I was struggling a bit.

Where's the beef?

Welcome to NC! Like I said above, I'm in Mooresville and we love it here. I would love to get a LKN-area Hokies group together to watch some games, whenever that happens.

They are closed now, but when they open back up check out Primal Brewing in Huntersville. Fun spot and some really good brews.

Actually been to Primal the last few times we were down visiting the in-laws. Good spot!

Where's the beef?

Welcome!!!! I can definitely help with the breweries and locations but not much with the aquarium stores and fishing spots sadly. as for Breweries there are lots of craft brew options and of course a day trip to Asheville in necessary for that. my fav breweries are OMB and Triple C

“I hope that they’re not going to have big eyes and pee down their legs so to speak,” -- Bud Foster

Charlotte fish nerd here. Looks like you've had plenty of recommendations for housing/drinking, so I'll fill you in on my experience with the local fish stores.

The most central store to Charlotte is Aquatica, which is just south of Uptown off of 77. Its the largest of the stores (in terms of square footage) and has a really beautiful show room that is split 50-50 with freshwater and saltwater stocking. It's a great place to spend time looking around even if you don't plan on buying anything. They have a few 500+ gallon tanks stocked with larger fish, such as freshwater rays, and they've also got a beautiful 700+ gallon saltwater predator tank. They've also got some gorquous aquascapes if that's your thing. Also have a ton of empty tanks/stands/etc on property for sale. The only drawback is that there is a huge markup on pretty much everything they sell. Any non-live product is marked up 30%+ relative to what you can find on amazon.

Another option (and my personal favorite) is Upscale Aquatics, north of uptown off of 77. While Aquatica wows you with the huge tanks and large showroom, Upscale aquatics does just the opposite. They're in a very small property and have absolutely crammed as many tanks with as many options as they can. Literally every wall in the entire place has a tank, and it's a very tight squeeze getting around the store. And just when you think you've seen it all, you find another secluded corner of the store with 100+ more species. In terms of variety, Upcale aquatics has wayyyy more stocking options than Aquatica. They also don't have anywhere near the markup that Aquatica has, but the tradeoff is that they don't carry anywhere near as many tank essentials. They're definitely more focused on fish/coral/plantsand I'd say they've got a 50-50 saltwater/freshwater mix as well.

The third store (although I haven't been there yet) is CMacs aquarium which is closer to the Steele-Creek area. Since I haven't been there, I can't speak for it, but I do know that the owner is very involved in the Charlotte Aquarium community, and the feedback I've seen has been pretty good.

Nemo's reef in southeast Charlotte is another that I've heard great things about, but again, I haven't been able to check it out yet.

Logan 3:16