Shelby, North Carolina, nestled amidst rolling hills and vibrant greenery, is a place that steals your heart from the moment you arrive. This charming town, brimming with history, culture, and Southern hospitality, offers an abundance of experiences for every kind of traveler.

Due to its distinctive mix of attractions, Shelby has become a well-known travel destination. Celebrating its close ties to the automotive sector, the city is home to a top-notch car museum.

The yearly Shelby Heritage Festival, a vibrant celebration of the city’s arts, heritage, and culinary pleasures with fascinating things to do in Shelby, North Carolina, draws crowds of visitors.

Nature lovers are enthralled by the surrounding scenery, which includes gorgeous parks, tranquil lakes, and hiking routes. The Shelby Botanical Gardens are evidence of the city’s dedication to maintaining its unspoiled beauty.

Whether you’re a new resident, a frequent visitor, or a local seeking historical adventures, artistic explorations, outdoor escapades, or simply a taste of small-town life, Shelby has something for you. So, pack your bags, grab your sense of adventure, and get ready to discover the magic of Shelby!

Fun Things To Do In Shelby, North Carolina

1. Earl Scruggs Center

One of Shelby’s gems is the Earl Scruggs Center, a museum dedicated to the life and legacy of the legendary bluegrass musician. Visitors can explore interactive exhibits, listen to live music and learn about the history of bluegrass music in the region.

The center showcases exhibits about Scruggs’ life and career, as well as the history and impact of bluegrass music. It offers educational programs, performances, and events to celebrate Scruggs’ contributions to American music and culture.

Address: 103 South Lafayette Street, Shelby, NC 28150, United States

2. Don Gibson Theatre

For fans of country music, the Don Gibson Theatre is a must-visit. Named after the famed singer-songwriter Don Gibson, this intimate venue hosts concerts, performances, and events year-round, showcasing local talent and national acts.

With its intimate setting and excellent acoustics, the Don Gibson Theatre provides a unique experience for both performers and audiences alike.

Address: 318 S Washington St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

3. Cleveland County Arts Council

Art enthusiasts will appreciate the Cleveland County Arts Council, which features rotating exhibitions, workshops, and classes. It provides a variety of programs and services aimed at fostering creativity, cultural awareness, and artistic expression. The Arts Council organizes exhibitions, workshops, classes, and events showcasing the visual arts, performing arts, literary arts, and more. Additionally, it collaborates with local artists, educators, and organizations to enhance access to the arts and enrich the cultural fabric of Cleveland County.

From painting to sculpture, there’s always something inspiring to see at this vibrant cultural hub.

Address: 111 S Washington St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

4. Visit Red Bridges Barbecue Lodge

Sample the barbecued meat dishes at Red Bridges Barbecue Lodge, a well-known eatery located on Highway 74. This family-run restaurant was founded in 1946, and its signature dish has always been pit-cooked barbecue. Its secret is in the way the pig is slow-cooked over hickory for an entire night, giving it that authentic, vintage barbecue flavor. In addition to grilling meats, the restaurant offers salads, sandwiches, platters, and traditional sides. When you enter the store, you are faced with choosing between a sandwich and a platter.

Red and Lyttle Bridges started the restaurant, which is presently owned and run by their daughter and grandkids. Celebrate the 74th year of this custom by treating yourself to a delicious barbecue.

Address: 2000 E Dixon Blvd, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

5. Unwind at Newgrass Brewing Co.

Treat yourself to a pint of handcrafted beer at Newgrass Brewing Co. Newgrass is a well-established fixture in the Shelby community, having been the first microbrewery in Cleveland County. It offers an extensive selection of superb, handcrafted brews made using unmatched ingredients that are found both domestically and abroad. Its laid-back, family-friendly atmosphere, stage for live music, outdoor beer garden, and equally delicious food create the perfect atmosphere for a good time.

If you’re interested in crafted brews or want to share the staff’s knowledge of beer, you’re in for a treat.

Address: 213 S Lafayette St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

6. Pleasant City Wood Fired Grille

Pleasant City Wood Fired Grille is a restaurant in Shelby, North Carolina, that you wouldn’t want to miss. It is known for its delicious wood-fired cuisine and cozy atmosphere. They specialize in using a wood-fired grill to cook their dishes, which adds a unique smoky flavor to their offerings. From steaks and burgers to seafood and pizzas, Pleasant City offers a diverse menu to satisfy a variety of tastes.

The restaurant provides a welcoming environment for diners to enjoy a meal with family and friends, making it a popular spot in the Shelby area. If you’re looking for a tasty dining experience with a rustic twist, Pleasant City Wood-Fired Grille is worth a visit.

Address: 233 S Lafayette St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

7. Kings Mountain National Military Park

The Revolutionary War combat that proved to be crucial in 1780, when the Patriots overcame British loyalists and raised American spirits, is remembered at Kings Mountain National Military Park in South Carolina.

The park highlights the historical significance of the conflict and its influence on the result of the war through educational programs, trails, and exhibits, in addition to maintaining the combat site.

To make the most of your vacation, Kings Mountain National Military Park offers a variety of activities and attractions in Shelby, North Carolina. Discover the history of this crucial Revolutionary War fight as you meander through the picturesque scenery on the well-maintained trails.

Interpretive events and captivating exhibitions shed light on the significance of the fight and its influence on American history.

Enjoy picnicking in picturesque settings, and use visitor centers for more in-depth learning. With a mix of educational experiences and natural beauty, the park caters to history enthusiasts and outdoor lovers, making it a captivating destination for all.

Address: 2625 Park Rd, Blacksburg, SC 29702, United States

8. Livermush Expo

Shelby is famous for its annual Livermush Expo, celebrating the beloved regional delicacy. Livermush is a type of sausage made from pig liver, head parts, and cornmeal, seasoned with spices, and formed into a loaf before being sliced and fried. The Livermush Expo features various activities and attractions centered around this culinary tradition, including livermush cooking competitions, tastings, live music, vendor booths selling livermush-related products, and more.

It’s a fun and unique event that brings together locals and visitors to enjoy all things livermush and experience the culture and heritage of the region.

Address: 103 South Lafayette Street, Shelby, NC 28150 United States

9. American Legion World Series

Sports fans will want to catch the American Legion World Series, held annually in Shelby. This prestigious baseball tournament attracts top teams from around the country, providing thrilling action on the diamond.

The World Series typically takes place in late summer and draws teams representing American Legion posts from different states. The tournament not only showcases talented young players but also promotes sportsmanship, teamwork, and community involvement. It’s a prestigious event in the world of American Legion baseball, attracting fans and scouts alike to witness the excitement and talent on display.

Address: 117-A W Warren St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

10. Shop at Cleveland County Farmers Market

For farm-fresh produce and locally made goods, look no further than the Cleveland County Farmers Market. Open year-round, this bustling market is a feast for the senses, with vendors selling everything from fruits and vegetables to artisanal crafts.

The market offers a vibrant and bustling atmosphere where shoppers can support local agriculture and artisans while enjoying the freshest ingredients and unique goods. Additionally, the market often hosts events, workshops, and demonstrations to educate the community about healthy eating, sustainable farming practices, and the importance of supporting local businesses.

It’s a wonderful place to experience the richness of Cleveland County’s agricultural heritage and community spirit.

Address: 126 W Marion St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

11. Uptown Shelby

Explore the charming shops and boutiques of Uptown Shelby, where you’ll find unique gifts, antiques, and treasures waiting to be discovered.

This place serves as the cultural, commercial, and social hub of the city, offering a charming blend of historic architecture, locally owned shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions. Visitors to Uptown Shelby can explore a variety of boutiques, galleries, and specialty stores, as well as enjoy dining options ranging from casual cafes to upscale eateries.

The district is also home to community events, festivals, and live entertainment throughout the year, making it a vibrant destination for residents and visitors alike. With its pedestrian-friendly streets and lively atmosphere, Uptown Shelby invites visitors to stroll, shop, dine, and experience the unique charm of this historic downtown area.

Address: 211 Kendall St. Shelby, NC 28150.

12. Visit Shelby City Park

Established in Shelby, North Carolina, Shelby City Park boasts a varied array of activities and a rich historical background. The park was established in the late 1800s and has a stunning 1919 carousel.

With recreational features including tennis courts, picnic spots, and walking trails, it is still a beloved community area. Both locals and tourists adore the park because of its cultural value, family-friendly events, and activities in Shelby, North Carolina.

Stroll around the park’s verdant surroundings, relish picnic areas, and discover the walking routes that meander through its scenic settings. For guests of all ages, the charming 1919 carousel is a timeless attraction that brings happiness and laughter.

Address: 850 West Sumter Street, Shelby, NC 28150, United States

13. Visit Foothills Farmers’ Market

The Foothills Farmers’ Market is a vibrant local market that showcases a variety of fresh produce, artisanal foods, and handmade crafts from the surrounding region. The market offers a variety of goods, creating ties within the community and encouraging sustainable behaviors, all while supporting regional farmers and businesses.

The Foothills Farmers’ Market in Shelby, North Carolina, is a welcoming location with many services and activities. Visitors can peruse kiosks full of farm-fresh fruits, veggies, and delicious handmade delicacies in the market’s quaint setting.

In addition to the enjoyable shopping experience, visitors may interact with regional producers to learn more about their crafts and strengthen ties to the neighborhood. Take part in classes, live entertainment, and cooking demos that emphasize innovative and sustainable culinary techniques.

Address: 126 West Marion Street, Shelby, NC 28150, United States

14. Cleveland County Historical Museum

North Carolina’s Cleveland County Historical Museum conserves and presents the rich history of the area. It has displays, relics, and records that illustrate the social, cultural, and economic development of the region.

There are many activities available at Shelby, North Carolina’s Cleveland County Historical Museum, to make your visit enjoyable. With its interactive exhibitions and compelling displays, visitors can immerse themselves in the region’s fascinating history. Modern amenities at the museum include educational programs, guided tours, and special events.

It also has a gift shop where you may discover interesting mementos and historical fiction novels. The museum is a great place for people of all ages to visit because of its captivating exhibitions, interactive experiences, and welcoming environment.

The museum offers a fun and educational journey into Cleveland County’s past, perfect for history buffs or those who are just curious.

Address: 111 South Washington Street, Shelby, NC 28150, United States

15. Tour the Owl’s Eye Vineyard and Winery

Located just outside Shelby in North Carolina, close to Charlotte, lies this amazing vineyard. You will have a delightful and unforgettable experience here, whether you are a wine enthusiast or just beginning to learn about wine.

The distance between it and Shelby’s historic downtown is only 2.5 miles (4 km). They provide private parties and events, wine tastings, and excursions. For meals, corporate gatherings, wedding celebrations, and private parties, the winery tasting room is a warm and inviting space.

Address: 1414 Metcalf Rd, Shelby, NC 28150

16. Visit South Mountains State Park

Situated in one of Shelby’s most untamed regions, the South Mountains State Park boasts heights reaching 3,000 feet. It features streams, an 80-foot (24.4-meter) waterfall, and 40 miles (64.4-kilometer) of mountain bike, horseback, and hiking paths. This is a true backwoods adventure, with 20 backpacking sites spread across six places.

The park offers trailer parking, equestrian campsites, and a barn to go along with its 33 miles of bridle trails. Mountain cyclists can take pleasure in a 17-mile journey that passes by campsites and the Jacob Fork River, which has numerous tributaries and miles and miles of trout fishing.

It also has two picnic spots and one picnic shelter for groups. There is a visitor center here that offers great, museum-quality exhibits on the rich cultural and natural history of the South Mountains.

Address: 3001 South Mountain Park Avenue, Connelly Springs, NC 28612

17. Explore Broad River Greenway

Known for its scenic beauty and recreational activities, the Broad River Greenway is a popular region in North Carolina, USA. It was founded in 1993 and now has 1,500 acres along the Broad River, providing hiking, fishing, picnics, and the opportunity to see animals.

Visitors are invited to enjoy a fusion of recreation and environment on the Broad River Greenway. This 1,500-acre jewel in North Carolina features a variety of environments, from peaceful woodlands to wide-open meadows.

Hiking paths in Shelby, North Carolina, meander through picturesque scenery, offering chances for discovery, wildlife observation, and outdoor pleasure. Fishing lovers are drawn to the Broad River, and picnic spots provide a peaceful way to unwind amidst the splendor of nature.

Its well-kept amenities allow guests to enjoy the great outdoors. Popular pastimes include photography and birdwatching, which showcase the diverse range of animals that reside in this sanctuary.

Address: 126 Broad River Dr, Shelby, NC 28152, United States

18. Visit the Great Metalmorphosis Giant Head

The Great Metamorphosis Giant Head is a unique public art installation located in Uptown Shelby, North Carolina. Created by artist David Edgar, the sculpture is a towering head made entirely of stainless steel. What makes the Giant Head particularly striking is its interactive design – visitors can turn a nearby wheel to rotate the sculpture, causing its facial features to change and morph into various expressions. This interactive element adds an engaging and playful dimension to the artwork, inviting people of all ages to interact with and enjoy the sculpture.

The Great Metamorphosis Giant Head has become a beloved landmark in Shelby, drawing visitors to Uptown to marvel at its creativity and whimsy.

Address:  3701 Arco Corporate Dr. Charlotte, NC

Also, Read 15 FUN THINGS TO DO IN WASHINGTON, NC

19. Shelby Country Club

With its many features, such as a well-thought-out golf course, tennis courts, swimming pools, and fine dining options, the Shelby Country Club has a long history as a top leisure destination.

Retaining a sense of community and luxury for both its members and visitors, it is still a beloved center for social events and leisure activities.

With its array of top-notch features and activities, Shelby Country Club in Shelby, North Carolina, guarantees both members and guests a remarkable experience. Modern tennis courts welcome both recreational and competitive players, while the painstakingly designed golf course offers aficionados a demanding yet fun atmosphere.

Numerous pools accommodate diverse tastes and provide leisure and amusement. In addition to sports, the club offers fine dining experiences with mouthwatering food and breathtaking vistas.

Shelby Country Club is still a sanctuary of luxury, relaxation, and friendship, with more social events, exercise centers, and spa services to round out its exciting menu.

Address: 1360 E Marion St, Shelby, NC 28150, USA

20. Visit Keeter Stadium

Keeter Stadium is a historic baseball stadium in Shelby, North Carolina. Since 2011, it has served as the home of the American Legion World Series. The stadium, which bears Harry L. Keeter’s name in honor of the well-known American Legion baseball fan, has played host to multiple national and international baseball tournaments.

With about 4,000 seats, it’s still a favorite location for baseball fans, encouraging a competitive and sportsmanlike attitude.

Keeter Stadium in Shelby, NC, offers visitors fantastic facilities and things to do in Shelby, NC. Excellent sightlines, luxurious facilities, and cozy seating provide guests with an outstanding experience.

Keeter Stadium and the surrounding area provide the ideal combination of sports and leisure activities, whether you’re a baseball lover or just looking for a fun weekend away. So make a game plan, get your friends

together, and have some exciting competition.

Address: George Blanton Memorial Stadium, 230 E Dixon Blvd, Shelby, NC 28152, United States

21. Buffalo Creek Gallery

Located in the picturesque mountains of Colorado, Buffalo Creek Gallery is a well-known art venue that was founded in 2007. The gallery features a variety of materials and genres and specializes in current and Western art.

It has grown into a cultural center for artists and art lovers, with an emphasis on local and regional artists.

Regular activities, seminars, and exhibitions at the gallery promote creativity and build community. Its goal is to encourage and support the appreciation of art in a beautiful natural environment.

To create a fully immersive artistic experience, Buffalo Creek Gallery offers a variety of artistic activities and attractions in Shelby, North Carolina. The expansive gallery has well-lit exhibition areas with a variety of intriguing Western and contemporary art.

Visitors can view a variety of paintings and sculptures made by talented local and regional artists. Regularly scheduled, exciting seminars and art sessions let participants explore their creativity under the supervision of professionals.

The serene mountain location enhances the atmosphere, providing a tranquil backdrop for art appreciation. Whether attending art talks, mingling with fellow enthusiasts, or simply soaking in the beauty of the surroundings, Buffalo Creek Gallery promises an enriching and inspiring visit.

Address: 104 East Warren Street, Shelby, NC 28150, United States

22. Visit the Foothills Public Shooting Complex

Located in Cleveland County, close to Shelby, the Foothills Public Shooting Complex is the biggest outdoor public shooting range in the southeast of the country. It’s a massive facility spanning 85 acres (34.4 hectares) that can accommodate many kinds of weaponry.

Along with 3D archery facilities, it also features a range office, classroom teaching facilities, an outdoor pavilion, a catering service area, restrooms, and a food and drink vending area. It can accommodate wheelchairs and has plenty of parking.

Foothills Public Shooting Complex is an excellent choice if you wish to improve your shooting abilities.

Address: 283 Fielding Rd, Cherryville, NC 28021

frequently asked questions about Shelby, North Carolina

Is Shelby, NC, a safe place to visit? Yes, Shelby is a safe and welcoming community with a low crime rate.

When is the best time to visit Shelby? Spring and fall offer mild weather and fewer crowds, making them ideal times to explore Shelby’s outdoor attractions.

Are there any family-friendly activities in Shelby? Absolutely! From parks and playgrounds to museums and festivals, there are plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy in Shelby.

Can I visit Shelby for a day trip from nearby cities? Yes, many visitors come to Shelby for day trips from cities like Charlotte and Asheville, taking advantage of its proximity to the Blue Ridge Mountains.

What should I bring with me when visiting Shelby? Depending on the season, you may want to pack sunscreen, bug spray, comfortable walking shoes, and a camera to capture memories of your trip.

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