As the Democratic National Convention got under way Monday, members of the public were able to enjoy the nearby Carolinafest, a free even that included barbecue, big musical acts and games for all ages.
The event was the last time the public could go to the area near the convention site, before it becomes a secure zone.
"I never would have thought that four years later, we would take the restrictions off of a physical space and invite people from all over the country to Downtown Charlotte to enjoy and opportunity to touch and feel this convention," said Democratic Mayor Anthony Foxx of Charlotte.
"I want to get the ground steak and really just hope the DNC coming here will help Obama win this state," said one participant.
"It's hard to argue with Charlotte, I've been here an hour and had barbecue and had a nice stroll," said another. "Southern hospitality sweet as the barbecue sauce!"
Musicians scheduled to perform included Janelle Monae, Jeff Bridges and James Taylor.