Located just west of Charlotte, Gaston County blends metropolitan convenience with small-town charm. Urban arts and cultural offerings share space with agritourism and dirt-track racing. Spend a day hiking at Crowders Mountain State Park, and that evening take in a Gaston Choral Society concert. Gaston County values its history and preserves it through museums and historic sites, but the future remains in focus. From thrilling outdoor adventures to trendy restaurants, craft breweries and boutique shops, the area welcomes travelers searching for new experiences.
Gaston County contains 13 municipalities, each with its own character. Watch miniature trains chug around the track at Cherryville’s train depot turned museum. See delicate orchids and tropical plants in the five-story conservatory at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. Marvel at the lights of Christmas Town U.S.A.® during McAdenville’s holiday spectacular. And take part in a century-old tradition by snagging a seat and a soda at Central Drug’s lunch counter in Bessemer City.
Places to Explore
As Gaston County continues to develop and rural areas become more urban, preserving farmland becomes more important. Maintaining these farms is not only important for farmers and their families, but also vital to residents and visitors as a source for fresh fruits and vegetables.
Several farms embrace agritourism, opening their gates to the public and serving as a venue for field trips, birthday parties, weddings and reunions. When people step onto a farm — to pick strawberries, pet a donkey or select a pumpkin from a patch — they gain a firsthand understanding of its value. These experiences explain to younger generations where their food is grown, who grows it and what that process involves. Area farmers markets support local growers and producers with regular opportunities to sell their products, meet customers and exchange ideas.
Arts, Culture & Heritage
Culture and the arts thrive in Gaston County thanks in large part to generous benefactors. Noted attractions like Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, Schiele Museum of Natural History & Planetarium, and C. Grier Beam Museum bear the names of civic-minded individuals whose local contributions will be felt for many generations to come.
Visitors to Gaston County encounter a wealth of cultural, artistic and heritage activities. Locally produced screenplays make their premieres at Joy Theater in Kings Mountain, while the Abbey Players at Belmont Abbey College have provided local theater since 1883. In Gaston County, there are plays to watch, gardens to view, museums to discover and festivals to enjoy. Click the link below to learn more about arts, culture and heritage in Gaston County.