Wednesday evening I decided to have dinner on the town close to home. I’d been meaning to stop by Don Pedro Mexican Restaurant (1009 Chancellor Park Drive) for quite some time to see what I’d been missing. As it turned out, I’d been missing a lot.

I started with an appetizer — white cheese dip with jalapenos, which was delightful — and with the help of my waiter, Hector, I decided my dinner selection would be the dos amigos chicken with shrimp, cooked with green peppers and onions and served with an authentic Mexican sour cream sauce with rice, beans and tortillas. Yes, yes, I was impressed.

With hardly any room for dessert, I turned to Hector and he suggested I try his favorite, the tres leche cake, made with three layers and three types of milk — whole milk, condensed milk and evaporated milk ­­– in the filling and topping. Definitely an excellent cake for milk lovers.

Road trip! Yes, I managed to slip out of town with alumni members of JCSU to the Barn Dinner Theater in Greensboro. I love bus rides and had been looking forward to this particular trip for quite a while. When we arrived, I wasn’t so sure this was the venue folks were raving about. It looked to me like a hole in the wall. You know that small dingy place where everybody has a good time? Well shut my mouth because I had the best time ever!

The food was off the chain — chicken, baked ham, roast beef, with hot bread and tons of vegetable. Dessert consisted of fruits, banana pudding and peach cobbler, all served buffet style in the center of the room.

After dinner, the floored was cleared. Then out of the ceiling dropped a stage, which hosted a magnificent performance of the Motown Review. I shrieked and hollered with delight as four gentlemen in red tuxedos performed amazing Motown hits, from the Temptations to the Jackson Five.

Whatever you do, don’t wait as long as I did to get to the Barnyard Theater. One hour and 27 minutes up I-85 North along with a couple of friends is all you need to have a spectacular time.

Now for my weekend picks. I hope to see you on the town.


Charlotte Bachata Festival ~ This is the event you have been waiting for. The Bachata and Salsa Festival is one of Charlotte’s biggest Latin dance events and features top-of-the-line internationally known instructors and performers. Bachata is a style of social dance from the Dominican Republic and is now danced all over the world. The 5th annual performance, Aug 18 – 20, is hosted by the Rumbao Latin Dance Company at Sheraton Charlotte Airport Hotel (3315 Scott Futrell Drive). More info.


The Old Town Cornelius Jazz Festival ~ This landmark event, from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Smithville Park (19710 South Ferry Street), will feature some of the area’s most soulful performers, such as Shades of Brown and the Calvin Edwards Trio. Local vendors and food trucks will also be on site. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcomed. This event is free and open to the public. More info.


Conexiones ~ Join local artists for a workshop that celebrates the images and spirit of ¡NUEVOlution! This event is free and open to the public, but registration is requested. Levine Museum of the New South (200 East 7th Street), 2:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. More info.

To see a larger listing of local events, visit the Qcitymetro events page at

Toni Baker-Tyson is a social butterfly. Her entertainment picks are published each Thursday on Email Toni at, or join her Chocolate Social Network, a group for the mature (40-plus) but young at heart.

Toni Baker-Tyson is an entertainment columnist for She enjoys being a social butterfly out on the town, loves live music, the arts, and foreign films. Her passion is volunteering with the...