If you are in the Matthews area over Labor Day weekend and like the memories of county fairs, you must try Matthews Alive! It is not quite as big as a county wide but has rides, lots of "once a year" foods, crafts, homemade jams and jellies, and entertainment and if you live in, or grew up in, Matthews, you are very likely to run into people you know.
It is held in the center of downtown so you cannot miss it. In fact, if you are in Matthews but not intending to attend Matthews Alive! you may be frustrated by it as it blocks east-west travel through the town from Friday through Monday.
The two men in the foreground of the accompanying photo are Matthews CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) members passing out literature on home and family safety. The background shows a portion of the main drag of Matthews Alive!
The town hall and library share a beautiful new building in the heart of Matthews and, not owning a computer, this second picture below shows where I do most of my Virtual Tourist posting. The birth of Matthews was largely dependent upon the coming of the railroad and a railroad theme is prominent within the library.
Matthews Street Station was developed in conjunction with the construction of the new Town Hall/Library and this elongated cul-de-sac is a good place to meet Matthews and her people. There is retail, banking, an art gallery, restaurants, et al. along this street and an ample green space in front of the town hall to eat, read, toss a frisbee, or just sit and talk.
The pix on this tipare courtesy of the Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County.
There isn't a ton to do in Matthews, but this is a great family place to go bowling. Make sure you get there early, or that you plan to wait a while. This place is usually pretty busy and they don't reserve lanes by phone.
AMF Bowling (Carolina Lanes)
11210 Brigman Rd.
Matthews, NC 28105
Matthews Presbyterian Hospital has been around since the mid-nineties and is really a nice looking place. There is a huge pond (not pictured here) in front of the building in addition to this fountain. Hopefully, you won't have to visit, but if you do have an accident, quality healthcare is near.
Excerpted from the Reid House's web site:
'The Reid House was built in 1890 by Edward Solomon Reid, who was a businessman in Matthews. Mr. Reid sold the house to his sister Ellen in 1893, the year she married Dr. Thomas Neely Reid. Upon his graduation from City University of New York, Dr. Reid settled in Matthews and began practicing medicine in 1889. Dr. Reid served the citizens of Matthews for fifty-seven years until his death in 1946 at the age of 78. He was a colorful figure in town who was beloved by his patients. Dr. Reid was one of the first people in Matthews to trade his horses for the 'new fangled' automobile.
The house was named for Miss Nancy Reid, the youngest of Dr. and Mrs. Reid’s daughters. She was born in the house on January 9, 1898 and lived there until her death on January 25, 1986. She was well educated and taught in the Charlotte Mecklenburg School System for 35 years. Mrs. Sarah Carter Redd of Columbia, SC, a niece of Miss Nancy’s was the last owner of the home. She generously gifted to The Matthews Historical Foundation the house and property on December 31, 1987.
The Reid House is considered unique because it was one of the few Victorian Queen Anne style homes built in the area. With its design of gingerbread cupola, Chinese Chippendale porch railing and rounded turret it has remained a wonderful example characteristic of Victorian style. The large windows, still with the original glass, the height of the interior walls, nearly 12 feet, and the woodwork and cross molding above the windows all are evident in homes of this era. Unfortunately, the furniture is not original to the house but is period correct.
The exterior and interior of the house have been remolded. The front porch was originally a verandah that was connected to the porch on the left side. That was changed and a bathroom added, which appears to the left of the porch. The back porch was enclosed in the 1950s. The existing dining room was a bedroom and the original dining area has become solely a kitchen. The chandelier in the dining room is said to be a replica of one in the White House. An extra bedroom and bath were also added by Miss Nancy at the back of the house and serves today as the 'bride’s room.' The gazebo was constructed in 1996, using the Chippendale woodwork pattern found on the front porch as a guide. It makes a wonderful addition to the large backyard.
The Reid House is owned and operated by The Matthews Historical Foundation and rented for various special events limited to 99 guests. Charming and quaint, it has been the setting for numerous weddings and receptions, parties, dinners and Victorian teas. Adding historical significance to Matthews, it is truly one of the area’s 'best kept secrets.''