Gibson Mill Market, Mac’s Speed Shop open, festivals closed

Long-awaited businesses had soft openings this week and will crank up to full operation in the coming days and the remains of Hurricane Ian forces event changes across the area this weekend.

Gibson Mill Market finally opens. Officially everything opens Wednesday, Oct. 5. Soft openings began this week. The Market is in Gibson Mill off McGill Avenue in Concord.

I ate at Taco Street Thursday. It was a slow go, but the food was really good. If you go, take some patience. It appears they are still hiring and training staff.

Starting Wednesday the hours will be Monday – Saturday, 7 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Sunday noon. – 8 p.m.

Here is a list of the newly opening businesses:

● Cara’s Cookie Company: a cookie adventure experience that supports Cara’s Purpose Charity

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● Johnny Rogers BBQ & Burgers: a family-owned food joint offering hand-pulled NC-style barbecue and burgers

● Taco Street: authentic street tacos, house-made salsas, traditional tortilla recipes, and homemade sangrias

● Churn Buddies Ice Cream: scratch-made ice cream featuring local ingredients and flavors

● Defined Coffee: local roasters serving coffee sourced from around the globe

According to a press release from Gibson Mill, these vendors join the previously opened High Branch Brewing Company and Luck Factory Games. Updates and timing for the three remaining food-hall restaurants, Kuni’s Kitchen, Barco’s Sports & Raw Bar and Livy’s Neapolitan Pizza will be shared at a later date.

“Much like it did beginning 100 years ago, Gibson Mill continues to serve as a gathering spot that champions local industry,” said Thomas Moore, Business Development Director at Gibson Mill. “We’re thrilled to officially open and become a foodie destination in the Concord area. Our tenants have already built a strong sense of community that we hope will lead to fun and exciting collaborations in the future.”

More information is available at or by following the brand on social @gibsonmillncmarket on Instagram and @GibsonMillMarket on Facebook.

The Market space takes up 17,000 SF of rentable/retail space that will support 12 local vendors and offer a full-service restaurant inside (3,000 sq. ft.). Architecture and design work has been developed by d3 Studio, with construction delivered by Liles Construction.

A little history about the mill. Gibson Mill was Gibson Manufacturing Company, established in 1899 when industrialist James Cannon partnered with R.E. Gibson. Through the early 20th century, the space bustled with over 31,000 sewing spindles. Mill workers manufactured vibrantly-colored yarns, gingham and madras fabric as well as dress goods before making towels and sheets from the 1930s through the 1970s.

Between the City Club event space, The Depot antique mall and Cabarrus Brewing Company and High Branch Brewing, Gibson Mill has been a hot spot for several years. The Market will only add to the attraction.

There is indoor and patio sitting. There is still space for more vendors, in the food hall/food court set-up.

Barbecue, beer and music are the staples of Mac’s Speed Shop, which opened at Concord Mills this week.

Mac’s Speed Shop at Concord Mills opens. Ironically (I think this is right and not the Alanis Morissette use), the only time I have eaten Mac’s barbecue was at a wedding reception at Gibson Mill.

Mac’s opened this week in front of Concord Mills Mall after an extensive renovation and expansion of the former Sticky Fingers building.

It is the fifth location in the Charlotte area for Mac’s. A sixth is in the works in Fort Mill. The company also has restaurants in Fayetteville, Wilmington, Greensboro and Greenville, South Carolina.

Hours for the Concord Mills location are Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to midnight.

Mac’s is a bit more than a restaurant. It has a stage on one side of the building and plenty of space outside along with the bar and in-door seating. It is open just a head of race week at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

It looks like there is a Dale Earnhardt painting on one outside wall.

Remains of Hurricane Ian. So far here is what we have for postponements and cancellations this weekend:

Concord International Festival, presented by the City of Concord and El Puente Hispano, has been moved to a new date: Saturday, Oct. 22, noon to 6 p.m. in Downtown Concord (Activities along Union Street and Cabarrus Avenue).

The Carolina Renaissance Festival’s 29th season opening was scheduled for this Saturday, Oct. 1 and is postponed. The Festival is typically open rain or shine but considers the amount of projected rainfall and wind conditions caused by Hurricane Ian to be a unique and extreme weather event requiring closure. Oct. 1 ticketholders for the Festival’s newly instated date specific ticketing will receive an automatic refund for Saturday. Opening on Sunday remains an option depending on post-storm conditions and will be announced on the Festival website and social media.

The Rowan County Parks and Recreation Department’s annual Autumn Jubilee festival that was scheduled to take place on Saturday and Sunday but has been cancelled. Officials said they say it will be back next year, bigger and better.

The Cabarrus College of Health Sciences community festival to celebrate the school’s 80th Anniversary was cancelled.

The Fall Safe Disposal Event, sponsored by the City of Concord, Cabarrus County, and Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont, has been moved to Saturday, Oct. 29, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at The Village Parking Lot, 280 Concord Parkway N. At this biannual event, residents can bring up to five trash bags or banker boxes of paper for shredding, electronic waste items for recycling (such as televisions, computers, cell phones, and other items), and any unused or expired medications for safe disposal.

Yellow Pages feedback. Our friend Martha Macon also saw the latest Yellow Pages directory out by Windstream.

“Many of our older citizens don’t have computers and need the directory but the print is so tiny that they would need a magnifying glass to read it,” Macon said.

Agreed. I am sure they were trying to save printing costs, but it rendered much of the publication useless for the people who need it most.

If you have a Friday Five, story suggestions or something I can rant about, email or call or text 704-786-0001.

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Mark Plemmons

Mark Plemmons, IT editor


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