Last week my friend Troy asked if I had visited one of Charlotte’s newest restaurants — Emma Ruth Daughters, located on 8432 Old Statesville Rd.  I love small businesses and decided to make my way over for a taste of “California Soul Food.” The owner, Ms. Cynthia Davenport (from the West Coast) relocated her family to Charlotte about ten years ago. Her mother, who passed away from breast cancer, was the motivation behind Cynthia’s decision to carry on the business in Charlotte, along with her own passion for cooking. The minute I walked in, Cynthia greeted me with a sunny disposition. I ordered fried chicken, macaroni  & cheese and cornbread.

I figured it was best to start out easy, because I was planning to sample dessert as well. The quaint eatery painted in pink (in memory of breast cancer) has a beautiful family tree painted on the wall and a warm feeling of being at home. The prices are reasonable, and the mac & cheese was delicious, and we all know not everyone in the kitchen can make one of our favorite dishes. The tasty fried chicken was prepared fresh as I waited, and the lemon pound cake was all that, too. Make sure to check out ERD, which had its grand opening in May.

Their motto is, come in as a customer and leave as part of the family. Looking forward to seeing my family again very soon.

BluNotes of Charlotte is adding a monthly forum on the first Tuesday of each month for community topics and discussions. The open dialogue this week featured Garry McFadden from the new show “I Am Homicide.”

The audience was engaged with open minds and respect for one another’s opinions about real issues and solutions in the black community. This free event is open to the public, and I encourage you to mark your calendar for next month, October 4 from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.

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


Next Level Band ~ Trendy First Ward Park is easily becoming one of my favorite places on the town. Located uptown on E. 7th Street, the park is situated within walking distance of eateries, venues and the rail line. This week, come out and enjoy R&B music with the Next Level Band. If you enjoy live music like I do, bring your lawn chair and comfortable footwear to dance the night away. Food trucks will be on site. You may also bring your own food basket, but outside alcohol is not permitted. Time: 6 p.m. -9 p.m. Cost: Free.  More info.


Yiasou Greek Festival ~ Fall is definitely in the air when this yearly event comes to town. Enjoy and experience the Greek culture and festivities on the grounds of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral (600 East Blvd). Don’t forget to try one of my favorites, the sweet rich pastry baklava. Fun for the whole family. September 8 – 11. Admission: $3. More info.


Sunday Taste of Birkdale ~ Enjoy bite-size entrees from restaurants, live music, wine tastings and more at Birkdale Village in Huntersville. This event will benefit Hospice and Palliative Care. Make sure to check out the fashion show for your fall wardrobe. Time: 3 p.m. – 7 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...