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What Makes a Playground Great?

Your favorite playground might not be the same as your child's. Find out why.

Kid-Friendly Music Festivals in the Carolinas

Regional music festivals offer fun for the whole family.

New Triangle Schools Opening or Reopening in 2016-17

Here are the public and private schools in the Triangle that will open — or reopen — for the 2016-17 school year.

Triangle Summer Movie Deals for Families

Enjoy free or discounted films this summer that both you and your kids can have fun watching.

8 Unique Ways to Have Family Fun in the Triangle

From stargazing to bouncing around in a bubble, the Triangle offers a variety of unique, family-friendly adventures you can all embark on together.

Win a Tween/Teen Mentorship Program

Join Our Fit Family Challenge for a chance to win an "Inside Out Strong" mentorship program for your tween or teen.

June 2016: Head out to Family-Friendly Festivals

Celebrate dance, dogs, chickens, pigs, pollinators and take part in a self-paced walking challenge.

June 2016 Family Performances in Cary, Durham, Raleigh

Enjoy great music, Instrument zoos, dance performances and more with your family in June.

Explore the Virginia Aquarium & Marine and Science Center

The Virginia Aquarium & Marine and Science Center is a must-visit attraction if you are vacationing in Virginia Beach this summer.

10 Step Countdown for Birthday Party Planning Perfection

A week-by-week guide to making party planning a piece of cake.

Fresh Take: Helping Kids Embrace New Things

Helping children learn to embrace fresh experiences can pave the way for a more fulfilling adulthood.

Memorial Day Weekend: Triangle Events, Day Trips

Head out to events that honor veterans for their service and celebrate community. Discover new Triangle parks or opt for a day trip.

Explore New Parks in the Triangle

Pack a picnic and head out to explore these new parks that recently popped up in different areas of the Triangle.

Get Ready for Carolina Parent's 2016 Fit Family Challenge

Find out who are 2016 spotlight families are, and connect with inspiring expert advice, free fitness classes, healthy recipes and a chance to win awesome prizes.

Enjoy a Family Movie and Camping May 27 in Garner

Kick off the Memorial Day weekend off with a free family-friendly movie at 8:30 p.m., Friday, May 27, at Lake Benson Park in Garner and/or opt to camp overnight for a fee.

Summer Jobs for Teenagers With Special Needs

Parents of teenagers with a disability have options for summer employment.

New Museum Expansions in the Triangle

Several Triangle museums popular have already added or will soon be adding new attractions or expansions.

Starting New with Challenging Goals

If you are feeling overwhelmed with your goals, go back to start and decide what is most important and just focus on one thing.

Win Tickets to 'Sesame Street Live: Let's Dance'

We're giving away two family four-packs of tickets to see Elmo, Ernie, Big Bird, Cookie Monster and other Sesame Street friends June 3-5 in Raleigh.

Ethnic Eateries in the Triangle With Kid-Friendly Options

Why not make these five your starting point for expanding your family’s menu horizons?

Triangle Treasures: 8 Places for Fun

Explore these eight sweet spots in and around the Triangle for fun, exercise and learning with your kids.

Fourth of July Celebrations, Parades, Fireworks

Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and surrounding towns are gearing up to celebrate Independence with patriotic performances, parades and fireworks.

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites Award Winners

Carolina Parent's Readers' Favorites recognize the places Triangle families love to visit, explore, dine and do business.

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites: Dining Out

Here are the Triangle restaurants your family loves to frequent

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites: Going Places

Check out the places Triangle families like to go for fun.

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites: Camps

These are the camps Triangle kids — and their parents — love to attend

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites: Parties

Here are the party entertainers, facilities and treats Triangle families favor for a variety of celebrations.

Carolina Parent 2016 Readers' Favorites: Shopping and Services

From malls to dentists, here are the places Triangle families like to shop and do business.

Cool Water Fun Places in the Triangle

Cool off this summer by visiting these pools, lakes and waters parks around the Triangle and beyond.

Find a Farmers Market Close to Home

The Triangle offers a large selection of locally grown fresh foods in its farmers markets. Find the closest one to your home.
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Calendar

May 2016

Raleigh Junior Rollers presents MAY-HEM, a double header. The Raleigh All-Stars take on  Savannah's Sk8 City Sirens at 10 a.m., followed by the RJR home teams Derby Demons vs Black &...

Cost: $7. Free for ages 3 and younger

Where:
United Skates of America
2901 Trawick Road
Raleigh, NC  27604
View map »


Contact Name: Charo Baxter
Website »

More information

This all-day family and pet-friendly live music event features North Carolina bands Four Founders, Night Shift, Jason Adamo Band and Band of Oz. A kids' zone, food trucks, raffles and vendor...

Cost: $5/adults. Free for kids

Where:
8501 Glenwood Ave.
Raleigh, NC  27612
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Website »

More information

Fest in the West is an outdoor festival celebrating Cary's rural past with art and crafts, demonstrations, contests, local food and fun kids zone. Compete in a contest: pie eating, hillbilly...

Cost: Free

Where:
Parkside Town Commons
7119 O' Kelly Chapel Rd.
Cary, NC  27519
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Sponsor: CaryCitizen
Telephone: 919-244-6463
Contact Name: Lindsey Chester
Website »

More information

Celebrate Triangle teens' art, music, dance, poetry.  Experience teens’ beautiful expressions of what family means to them and their hopes for the future.  Through...

Cost: Free

Where:
Crabtree Valley Mall
4325 Glenwood Ave.
Promo Court
Raleigh, NC  27612
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Sponsor: Education for Successful Parenting
Telephone: 949-646-6016
Contact Name: Randi Rubenstein
Website »

More information

Learn what makes opossums unique, practice playing possum, and get to see and touch a real opossum mount. All ages. All children must be accompanied by an adult and all persons attending must be...

Cost: $5/family

Where:
American Tobacco Trail
1309 New Hill-Olive Chapel Rd.
Apex, NC  27502
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Telephone: 919-387-4342
Website »

More information

Learn about flower parts and pollinators, and the vital role of bees and other insects in our world. Designed to enhance the arboretum experience for families with young children, these hands-on,...

Cost: $5/family

Where:
JC Raulston Arboretum
4415 Beryl Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27606
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Sponsor: JC Raulston Arboretum
Telephone: 919-513-7011
Contact Name: Elizabeth Overcash
Website »

More information

Explore why exposure to nature is vitally important to a child’s mental, physical, emotional and intellectual development. Learn simple ways to add nature play and natural elements to a...

Cost: $15/person

Where:
Walnut Creek Wetland Center
950 Peterson Street
Raleigh, NC  27610
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Sponsor: City of Raleigh Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources
Telephone: 919-996-2760
Contact Name: Stacie Hagwood
Website »

More information

See The Raleigh Ringers, an internationally acclaimed handbell choir based in Raleigh, deliver its spring concert. The group of 18 ringers performs original compositions as well as unique...

Cost: $10-$20

Where:
Meymandi Concert Hall
2 E. South St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Sponsor: The Raleigh Ringers
Telephone: 919-847-7574
Contact Name: Nancy Ritter
Website »

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For arts lovers of all kinds, including art makers, art teachers, arts administrators, arts supporters, ARTS Day is a chance to make a difference in the community. This annual two-day conference of...

Cost: $20-$150

Where:
Talley Student Center
2610 Cates Ave.
Raleigh, NC  27606
View map »


Telephone: (919) 834-1411
Contact Name: Sarah Donell
Website »

More information

Enjoy songs, stories and fun in Spanish. Infants-preschoolers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Spanish for fun! Cary
100 Endeavor Way
Cary, NC  27513
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Sponsor: Spanish for fun!
Telephone: 919-677-7114
Contact Name: Cynthia De Amat
Website »

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Take time out to spend with your little one as you crawl, explore and bounce in a safe environment exclusively for children ages 12 mos-3 yrs. Parents play free; admission is $5 per child....

Cost: $5/child

Where:
BounceU of Apex
3419 Apex Peakway
Apex, NC  27502
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Website »

More information

For arts lovers of all kinds, including art makers, art teachers, arts administrators, arts supporters, ARTS Day is a chance to make a difference in the community. This annual two-day conference of...

Cost: $20-$150

Where:
Talley Student Center
2610 Cates Ave.
Raleigh, NC  27606
View map »


Telephone: (919) 834-1411
Contact Name: Sarah Donell
Website »

More information

Enjoy songs, stories and fun in Spanish. Infants-preschoolers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Spanish for fun! Raleigh
8000 Glenwood Ave
Raleigh, NC  27612
View map »


Sponsor: Spanish for fun!
Telephone: 919-881-1160
Contact Name: Carol Marin
Website »

More information

The North Carolina Heritage Awards, a program of the North Carolina Arts Council, returns to honor the state’s masters of the traditional arts. PineCone partners with the Arts Council to...

Cost: $27.14

Where:
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts
2 E. South Street
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Telephone: 919-996-8711
Contact Name: Alex Franzen
Website »

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Enjoy songs, stories and fun in Spanish. Infants-preschoolers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Spanish for fun! Wake Forest
222 Capcom Ave
Wake Forest, NC  27587
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Sponsor: Spanish for fun!
Telephone: 919-883-2061
Contact Name: Karina Martinez
Website »

More information

Spread a picnic blanket for garden stories and crafts. Meet at the Bobby G. Wilder Visitor Center. Ages 3-5 with adult. Dress for the weather as this program is held outdoors. Activities are moved...

Cost: $5/child

Where:
JC Raulston Arboretum
4415 Beryl Rd
Raleigh, NC  27606
View map »


Sponsor: JC Raulston Arboretum
Telephone: 919-513-7011
Contact Name: Elizabeth Overcash
Website »

More information

Help park staff with citizen science projects. Take a water bottle and wear sturdy shoes. Ages 8-10 with adult; 11 years and older adult optional. Meet at the Cypress Shelter. Registration required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Harris Lake County Park
2112 County Park Dr.
New Hill, NC
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Telephone: 919-387-4342
Website »

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Enjoy an energetic, musical storytime with Amy Godfrey, who was a Durham County librarian for six years. Babka and challah will be served as...

Cost: Free

Where:
Levin JCC
1937 West Cornwallis Rd.
Durham, NC  27705
View map »


Website »

More information

Spread a picnic blanket for garden stories and crafts. Meet at the Bobby G. Wilder Visitor Center. Ages 3-5 with adult. Dress for the weather as this program is held outdoors. Activities are moved...

Cost: $5/child

Where:
JC Raulston Arboretum
4415 Beryl Rd
Raleigh, NC  27606
View map »


Sponsor: JC Raulston Arboretum
Telephone: 919-513-7011
Contact Name: Elizabeth Overcash
Website »

More information

Celebrate our freedom and honor those who have served our nation as WRAL hosts Balloon Fest. See 35 beautiful hot air balloons take to the skies over Fuquay-Varina and enjoy more than 20 hours of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Fleming Loop Park
2321 N. Main St.
Fuquay-Varina, NC  27526
View map »


Website »

More information

Witness the culmination of the school's art and music programs. From film screenings, music performances, paintings, sculptures, poetry readings, to dramatic performances, this is an evening...

Cost: Free

Where:
Emerson Waldorf School, Brown Wing
6211 New Jericho Rd.
Chapel Hill, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-967-1858
Website »

More information

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Celebrate our freedom and honor those who have served our nation as WRAL hosts Balloon Fest. See 35 beautiful hot air balloons take to the skies over Fuquay-Varina and enjoy more than 20 hours of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Fleming Loop Park
2321 N. Main St.
Fuquay-Varina, NC  27526
View map »


Website »

More information

Construct a bird feeder out of a pine cone and learn about feathered friends. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Register online.

Cost: $5/child

Where:
Logan's Garden Shp
707 Semart Dr.
Raleigh, NC  27604
View map »


Website »

More information

This event was created to tackle some of the challenges facing our youth, with a focus specifically on girls in rising grades 9 and 10. Topics to be covered include improving low self-esteem,...

Cost: $21.49

Where:
Hotel Indigo Raleigh Durham Airport
151 Tatum Dr.
Durham, NC  27703
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy an outdoor performance of Shakespeare’s fast-paced romp through love, friendship and betrayal in the museum’s Fletcher Garden. Presented in conjunction with Raleigh’s Bare...

Cost: Free

Where:
N.C. Museum of History
5 E. Edenton St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy an outdoor performance of Shakespeare’s fast-paced romp through love, friendship and betrayal in the museum’s Fletcher Garden. Presented in conjunction with Raleigh’s Bare...

Cost: Free

Where:
N.C. Museum of History
5 E. Edenton St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Website »

More information

The Friends of Oberlin Village (FOV) invite the community to “Celebrate the O,” their annual barbecue fundraiser just off the grounds of the Historic Oberlin Cemetery, in the parking...

Cost: Free. $10 for barbecue dinner

Where:
Parking lot behind InterAct of Wake County
1012 Oberlin Rd.,
Raleigh, NC  27605
View map »


Sponsor: Friends of Oberlin Village
Telephone: 336-416-1895
Contact Name: Sabrina Goode
Website »

More information

Kids ages 7-17 take part in a hands-on magic workshop. Learn the performance art of theatrical magic from local masters on the second and fourth Saturday of each month. Details available at...

Cost: $10

Where:
The Magic Corner Magic Shop
3684 Capital Blvd.
Raleigh, NC  27604
View map »


Sponsor: Ring #199,The Int'l Brotherhood of Magicians
Telephone: 919-272-6465
Contact Name: Roger Way
Website »

More information

Celebrate Memorial Weekend with the monumental "Tchaikovsky 5th Symphony."  Also enjoy selections by Wagner and Smetana as “citizen musicians” perform with the North...

Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Booth Amphitheatre
8003 Regency Pkwy.
Cary, NC
View map »


Website »

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Annual Guides

Exceptional Child

Children with special needs face unique challenges. Find resources from A-Z in areas of advocacy, education, camps and therapies to support them as they grow.

GPS [Go. Play. See]

Triangle parents are busy and on the go. Browse our GPS guide to explore 1,155 family-friendly resources located across the region.

Education Guide

The 2015-16 Education Guide offers 539 education resources in the Triangle, including local preschools, private schools, public school systems, charter schools, boarding schools and academic resources.