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NC By Train and Amtrak Offer Summer $5 Kids Ride Deal

Through an agreement with Amtrak, NC By Train is offering a summer 2017 deal where kids ages 2-12 can ride for $5 to 12 destinations in North Carolina on certain days.

25 Fun Summer Things to Do With Kids for Free (or Less Than $5)

Explore these ideas for free or inexpensive outings with your kids in Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill.

Dealing With Student Stress During EOGs, EOCs and Final Exams

Explore these tips for helping your child de-stress during exam preparation.

Memorial Day at State Natural and Cultural Sites and Military Discounts

Memorial Day weekend is a great time to explore the wonderful natural and cultural resources of our state, and many venues offer military discounts.

Enter to Win Tickets to 'Sesame Street Live: Make a New Friend' at PNC Arena

We're giving away two sets of four tickets to the show of each winner's choice: June 2, 3 or 4.

Expert Tips for Connecting With Your Toddler

Find balance between providing structure, guidance and discipline, but also new moments and ways to connect.

Fun Things to Do in the Triangle This Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day weekend offers the Freedom Balloon Fest, a “beach” party at New Hope Valley Railroad, a big-band salute to Broadway and hikes to a great blue heron nesting site.

North Carolina Summer Reading Programs

All North Carolinians can participate in summer reading programs at libraries across the state.

Family-Friendly Annual Events and Festivals in Every Season

Four seasons of family fun

10 Places for Family Adventures in the Triangle

Triangle-area resources for families who like to defy their limits — and sometimes gravity as well!

Urban Farms and Community Gardens Blossom in the Triangle

Here are a few gardens and farms that prove city-based agriculture is more than a passing trend.

17 Hidden Gems for Triangle Families to Discover

Our top picks for lesser-known attractions that serve family fun in the Triangle.

5 Ideas for a Family Playdate in the Triangle

Check out these ideas for creating a day of wonder with your family — right here in your own backyard.

15 Family Photo Spots in the Triangle

Unique and scenic locales in the Triangle to set up your next family portrait.

Celebrating Diversity in the Triangle

13 ways to broaden your family’s cultural experiences

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Parties

Here are the entertainers, facilities and bakeries Triangle families turn to for parties and celebrations.

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Going Places

Here are family fun favorites readers voted for this year.

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Dining Out

Here are family-friendly restaurants in the Triangle that our readers love.

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Camps

Here are the camps Triangle kids love to experience.

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Get Moving

Here are the places Triangle families love to ride bikes, hike, go for a swim and play.

Carolina Parent 2017 Readers' Favorites: Shopping and Services

From toy stores to pediatricians, here are the places Triangle families like to shop and do business.

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.

Durham Offers Free Admission to Public Pools and Spraygrounds for Ages 18 and Younger

Public pools offer free admission to ALL ages at various times as well

IKEA Coming to Cary Towne Center as Early as Summer 2020

Local media reports an IKEA store is on the way for Triangle consumers.

Have Fun with Nature May 22-25

Make a flower craft, learn about squirrels, dig around in the garden and explore the Museum of Natural Sciences during a special after-hours sensory-friendly session.

Have a Ball With New U.S. Postal Service Forever Stamps

The U.S. Postal Service will release stamps with the look — and feel — of actual balls used in eight popular sports.

Fun Things to Do in the Triangle This Weekend, May 19-21

This weekend brings three solid days of festivals and shows to the Triangle. The only hard part will be deciding what to do when!

North Carolina Artist Sculpts Life-Size Ocelot Artwork for Display at North Carolina Zoo

Sculpture of an ocelot family is the newest addition to the North Carolina Zoo’s ocelot habitat area.

Biltmore Offers Free Admission to Kids During Summer

Kids 16 and younger are admitted to the estate for FREE from May 26 through Sept. 4.

Enter to Win American Girl OR Art Books

We're giving away two collections of books. Tell us which collection you'd like to win when you enter.
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Calendar

May 2017

See the incredible story behind one of the world's most beloved characters, Peter Pan. Playwright J.M. Barrie struggles to find inspiration until he meets four young brothers. Appropriate...

Cost: $40 and up

Where:
Durham Performing Arts Center
123 Vivian St.
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Website »

More information

Learn how bees communicate and how pollination works. Taste different types of honey. All ages with parent. Advance registration required online. 

Cost: $1/person

Where:
Crowder District Park
4709 Ten-Ten Rd.
Apex, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-662-2850
Website »

More information

Watch a brief slideshow and explore the inner workings of the mill. All ages. Online registration encouraged.

Cost: $5/adult, $3 ages 7-16. Free for ages 6 and younger

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

Enjoy the story of an extraordinary girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Based on the novel by Roald Dahl, this...

Cost: $25 and up

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


Sponsor: North Carolina Theatre and Broadway Series South
Telephone: 919-831-6941
Website »

More information

See the incredible story behind one of the world's most beloved characters, Peter Pan. Playwright J.M. Barrie struggles to find inspiration until he meets four young brothers. Appropriate...

Cost: $40 and up

Where:
Durham Performing Arts Center
123 Vivian St.
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy the story of an extraordinary girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Based on the novel by Roald Dahl, this...

Cost: $25 and up

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


Sponsor: North Carolina Theatre and Broadway Series South
Telephone: 919-831-6941
Website »

More information

Enjoy the story of an extraordinary girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Based on the novel by Roald Dahl, this...

Cost: $25 and up

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


Sponsor: North Carolina Theatre and Broadway Series South
Telephone: 919-831-6941
Website »

More information

This Memorial Day, honor those who have served our nation as Project Uplift USA hosts the annual WRAL Freedom Balloon Fest at Fleming Loop Park in Fuquay-Varina. See 35 hot...

Cost: Free

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


Website »

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Enjoy a Memorial Day Hike to the heron rookery. See one of the largest heron rookeries in the area and upwards of 100 nesting pair on this very popular nature walk. Register online for either the...

Cost: Free

Where:
Glennstone Nature Preserve
Glennstone Dr and Little Valley Ct
Durham, NC  27704
View map »


Sponsor: Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association
Telephone: 919-698-9729
Contact Name: Chris Sajdak
Website »

More information

Watch a brief slideshow and explore the inner workings of the mill. All ages. Online registration encouraged.

Cost: $5/adult, $3 ages 7-16. Free for ages 6 and younger

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

This Memorial Day, honor those who have served our nation as Project Uplift USA hosts the annual WRAL Freedom Balloon Fest at Fleming Loop Park in Fuquay-Varina. See 35 hot...

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

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Learn how to help your baby excel in motor development. This class focuses on sitting and offers a variety of ways to help your baby master motor development. Register online.

Cost: $15

Where:
Baby + Co
226 Ashville Ave.
Cary, NC  27518
View map »


Sponsor: Babies On The MOVE
Contact Name: Rebecca Quinones
Website »

More information

Ages 5-12 learn about healthy fruits and vegetables, kitchen and food safety, and enjoy a healthy snack. Meet in the bakery side of the cafe. Email sherry.thrasher@wholefoods.com to...

Cost: Free

Where:
Whole Foods North Raleigh
8710 Six Forks Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27615
View map »


Telephone: 919-354-0350
Contact Name: Sherry Thrasher

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Join Carolina Hurricanes staff members in the slap shot booth and practice like a pro in the skills and drills zone.

Cost: $5 ages 1 and older

Where:
Marbles Kids Museum
201 East Hargett St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Telephone: 919.834.4040
Contact Name: Taylor Rankin
Website »

More information

Learn about different types of gardening practices and the benefits of planting native species. Be prepared to work in the park’s educational gardens. Bring a water bottle and a hat. Work...

Cost: Free

Where:
American Tobacco Trail
1305 White Oak Church Rd.
Apex, NC  27523
View map »


Sponsor: Harris Lake County Park and the American Tobacco Trail
Telephone: 919-387-4342
Contact Name: Alden Early
Website »

More information

Make a chainmaille bracelet. Ages 12 and older. Register online.

Cost: $22.50 plus materials fee

Where:
Durham Arts Council
120 Morris St.
Durham , NC  27701
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Sponsor: Durham Arts Council
Telephone: 919-560-2726
Website »

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Enjoy the outdoors with a story read aloud in the gardens. Nature-themed stories are followed by a related activity or garden walk. Ages 3-5. Meet in the Charlotte Brody Discovery Garden Story...

Cost: Free. Parking fees apply

Where:
Sarah P. Duke Gardens
420 Anderson St.
Durham, NC  27705
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Telephone: 919-668-1707
Website »

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Parent and child explore the gardens together to find the perfect spot to spread a picnic blanket for garden stories and crafts. Ages 3-5. Program begins at the Bobby G. Wilder...

Cost: $5/nonmembers. Free for members

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


Telephone: 919-513-7011
Contact Name: Elizabeth Overcash
Website »

More information

Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby and their Sesame Street friends welcome Chamki, Grover’s friend from India, to Sesame Street. Together, they explore the universal fun of friendship and celebrate...

Cost: $18 and up

Where:
PNC Arena
1400 Edwards Mill Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Website »

More information

A wonderfully kid-paced hour featuring music, play and dancing with toddler stars singing on the mic at Cotton's gently amplified & participatory music show. Children delight in...

Cost: Free with admission

Where:
Pump It Up Raleigh
10700 World Trade Blvd, #112
Raleigh, NC  27617
View map »


Sponsor: Pump it Up
Telephone: 919-828-3344
Contact Name: Owner/manager Kellie Paterson McHugh
Website »

More information

Enjoy a festive evening celebrating and supporting the amazing animals of the Duke Lemur Center. This awesome event costs only one $50 Adopt-a-Lemur donation per car, but reservations must be made...

Cost: $50/car

Where:
The Duke Lemur Center
3705 Erwin Rd.
Durham, NC  27705
View map »


Telephone: 919-401-7252
Website »

More information

Kids spend a night out in nature making memories and new friends in an old-fashioned, camp-style program. Ages 8-12. Registration required.

Cost: $17/resident, $22/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Raleigh, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-387-5980
Website »

More information

The all-female band Beauty Operators rock the stage in a free, family-friendly concert. Enjoy local eats and drinks from Stuft,  Esmeralda’s Café, Randy’s Pizza...

Cost: Free

Where:
Northgate Mall
1058 W. Club Blvd.
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Sponsor: Northgate Mall
Telephone: 919-286-4407
Website »

More information

Take a walk with a park naturalist to explore the woods and fields at this special time. Look for deer, coyotes and owls. All ages. Register online. Course code #205495.

Cost: $2 ages 4 and older

Where:
Wilkerson Nature Preserve
5229 Awls Haven Dr.
Raleigh, NC  27614
View map »


Sponsor: City of Raleigh Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources
Telephone: 919-996-6764
Contact Name: Wilkerson Nature Preserve
Website »

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Join bird enthusiast, Vernon, for an easy walk while looking and listening for our feathered friends. Discover different types of birds and their habitats.​ Meet at the Waterwise Garden.

Cost: Free

Where:
Lake Crabtree County Park
1400 Aviation Parkway
Morrisville, NC  27560
View map »


Sponsor: Lake Crabtree County Park
Telephone: 919-460-3355
Contact Name: Carol Cunningham
Website »

More information

Learn about animals that hatch from eggs and help build an artistic "nest." Drop-in program. Registration is not required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

Learn about the environment at interactive education stations and get an up-close look at some of the living things found along a trail. Visit owls, bees and butterflies; learn how to identify...

Cost: Free

Where:
E. Carroll Joyner Park
701 Harris Rd.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Disc golf professionals from Cary Area Disc League provide lessons for beginners or advanced skills for the more experienced. Register for an “Introduction to Disc Golf” session at 9 or...

Cost: Free

Where:
Harris Lake County Park
2112 County Park Dr.
New Hill, NC  27562
View map »


Sponsor: Harris Lake County Park
Telephone: 919-387-4342
Contact Name: Joanne St. Clair
Website »

More information

See the blondes take on the brunettes in flag football. Pregame festivities begin at 9: 30 a.m.; kickoff is at 10 a.m. Enjoy vendors selling food and beverages, as well as food trucks....

Cost: $20 donation

Where:
NCSU Method Road Complex
3021 Ligon Street
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Sponsor: Alzheimer's Association
Contact Name: Heather Arflin
Website »

More information

Make a punch-out lantern to enjoy on summer nights. Event is free, but donations of $1/person are welcome. Adult help in creating craft is required.

Cost: Free

Where:
Historic Stagville
5828 Old Oxford Hwy.
Durham, NC  27712
View map »


Sponsor: Historic Stagville
Telephone: 919-620-0120
Website »

More information

Enjoy storytime with a community farm member, a book swap via Little Free Library, and free play in a natural playground.   

Cost: Free

Where:
The Community Farm at Camp Chestnut Ridge
2902 Mount Willing Rd.
Efland, NC  27243
View map »


Contact Name: Sandy Straw
Website »

More information

Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby and their Sesame Street friends welcome Chamki, Grover’s friend from India, to Sesame Street. Together, they explore the universal fun of friendship and celebrate...

Cost: $18 and up

Where:
PNC Arena
1400 Edwards Mill Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Website »

More information

Take the family to enjoy games, prizes, food trucks, a dunk tank, water slide and silent auction. Proceeds benefit the school's PTA.

Cost: Free

Where:
E.K. Powe Elementary
913 Ninth St.
Durham, NC  27705
View map »


Website »

More information

Take a 30-minute tour to view the main power drive and milling machinery. Tickets available inside the park's visitor center. Online registration encouraged.

Cost: $5/adult, $3 ages 7-16. Free for ages 6 and younger

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC
View map »


Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

Explore the historic nature of Leigh Farm Park with a friendly guide. Venture inside the historic farmhouse while being captivated by tales about life at Leigh Farm throughout the years.

Cost: Free

Where:
Leigh Farm Park
370 Leigh Farm Rd.
Durham, NC  27707
View map »


Sponsor: Durham Parks and Recreation
Telephone: 919-560-1116
Contact Name: Natalya Buckel
Website »

More information

Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby and their Sesame Street friends welcome Chamki, Grover’s friend from India, to Sesame Street. Together, they explore the universal fun of friendship and celebrate...

Cost: $18 and up

Where:
PNC Arena
1400 Edwards Mill Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Website »

More information

Preschool and elementary-age boys and girls and their parents/grandparents enjoy homemade goodies, tea, punch, and a crazy hat contest for kids and adults.  $10 for kids over 2 and adults....

Cost: $7-$10

Where:
Fairmont UMC
2501 Clark Ave.
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Sponsor: Fairmont Work Team
Telephone: 919-832-3316
Contact Name: susie mallard barnes
Website »

More information

The Latino Arts Festival aims to highlight the presence of Latino arts and culture in the community and provide an opportunity to build bridges across cultures. Enjoy a Latino art exhibit at...

Cost: Free admission. Food passports are $6/person

Where:
Halle Cultural Arts Center
237 N. Salem St.
Apex, NC  27502
View map »


Sponsor: Apex Latino Arts Festival
Telephone: 786-385-0774
Contact Name: Marilyn Marrero
Website »

More information

​Enjoy a kid-friendly ride and adventure. Meet at the Clean Machine Bike Shop and ride 6 miles to Keith Arboretum to set up a campfire and cook a foil dinner of veggies, chicken and...

Cost: $20/guest

Where:
Keith Arboretum
2131 Marions Ford Rd.
Chapel Hill, NC  27516
View map »


Sponsor: Rōmr
Telephone: 917-922-6605
Contact Name: Adriel
Website »

More information

Enjoy the fun at this family-friendly and free event, which raises funds for the Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association. The Beaver Queen Pageant is Durham’s own special mix of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Duke Park Meadow
106 W. Knox St.
Durham NC, NC  27701
View map »


Sponsor: Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association
Telephone: 919-698-9729
Contact Name: Rachel Cohn
Website »

More information

The Nasher Teen Council invites all teens to save the date for the second annual teen-only IMPACT party at the Nasher Museum. Teens can enjoy food, live bands, student performances, workshops with...

Where:
Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University
2001 Campus Dr.
Durham, NC  27705
View map »


Website »

More information

Hear timeless love music, including songs from "The Phantom of the Opera," "Romeo and Juliet," "My Fair Lady" and more. Purchase tickets online. Kids 12 and younger...

Cost: See website for fees

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


Website »

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Annual Guides

Education Guide

The 2016-17 Education Guide offers 643 education resources in the Triangle, including area preschools, private schools, public school systems, charter schools, boarding schools and academic resources.

The Triangle Go-To Guide

Our debut Triangle Go-To Guide connects you to family fun resources across the Triangle. Plus, find out who our 2017 Readers' Favorites are.