Triangle Summer Movies Under the Stars

Watch these free or discounted films under the summer night sky


Published:

Photo courtesy of North Carolina Museum of Art

There is just something special about watching a movie outside. The warm breeze blowing, sounds of summer in the background, and stars shining overhead — come enjoy cinematic magic in an outdoor setting with your family and friends. From Cary to Carrboro, your family can enjoy free or discounted cinematic magic in an outdoor setting with your family and friends. For kid-friendly summer movies during the day, see Triangle Summer Movie Deals for Families.

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Apex | Benson | Cary | Chapel Hill | Durham | Garner | Henderson | Knightdale | Morrisville | Raleigh


APEX

Apex Music & Movies in the Park Series
facebook.com/townofapex
2600 Evans Road
919-249-1120
Free outdoor concert and movie series at Apex Nature Park Amphitheatre. All movies begin at dusk. Bring your own chair or blanket and picnic dinner, but leave pets and alcohol at home. See website for dates and call for movie titles. 


BENSON

Movie Night in the Grove
facebook.com/town.benson
400 E. Main St. 
919-894-5117
The Town of Benson offers a free movie night on the first and third Friday of every month. Beginning in May, movies are held outdoors at the Downtown Singing Grove, weather permitting, and begin at sunset. 


CARY

Movies by Moonlight
facebook.com/boothamphitheatre
8003 Regency Pwky
919-462-2025
Outdoor movies at the Koka Booth Amphitheatre are shown primarily on Fridays, June 14-Aug. 30. Free for children 12 and younger and $5 for general admission. A portion of the profits benefit WakeMed Children's Hospital. Bring picnics as well as blankets or chairs. Movies start at dusk (approximately 8:30 p.m.) and the gates open at 7 p.m. Enjoy lawn games before the movie and concession items. 2019 titles include: Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (PG), Spider Man into the Spider-Verse (PG), Ralph Breaks the Internet (PG), Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (PG), Game Night (R), Incredibles 2 (PG), Jurassic World (PG-13), Black Panther (PG-13), A Star is Born (R).

Bond Park Lakeside Movies
801 High House Road, Bond Park Boathouse
Enjoy a movie by the lake with your family. The boathouse will be open for you to take a boat out on the lake while you wait for the sun to set. Bring a picnic, some lawn chairs, and a blanket and enjoy a fun family movie with beautiful Bond Lake in the background. April 18: Jumanji (1995), May 17: Wreck-It Ralph, Sept. 20: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, Oct. 18: The Incredibles


CHAPEL HILL

Movies Under the Stars
150 E. Rosemary St.
Outdoor movies are shown on top of the Wallace Parking Deck on select Thursdays. Free admission and free popcorn. Bring your own lawn chairs or blankets. Movies start at 8:30 p.m., or sundown. 2019 titles TBA.

Movies by Moonlight
​The Green, 15-501 South
919-969-8049
​Movies start at dusk and are $5 per person (children under five are free). Screenings are on the Southern Village Green across from the Lumina Theater primarily on Saturdays, May 18–August 17. No glass bottles or pets allowed on the Green. 2019 titles include: Spider Man: Into the Spider-verse (PG), The LEGO Movie 2, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (PG), The Wizard of Oz (PG), Captain Marvel (PG-13), Dumbo (PG), Shazam! (PG-13), Missing Link (PG), Bohemian Rhapsody (PG-13), Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (PG), Forrest Gump (PG-13). 


DURHAM

Family Movie Night
2000 S. Alston Ave.
Bring your entire family to movie night at Campus Hills. On the fourth Friday of each month, enjoy popcorn, drinks, and a movie that the entire family will enjoy. Doors open at 5:30, Showtime is at 6 p.m. Cost for adults and non-residents. 

Rock the Park Concert & Movie Series
501 Foster Street, Durham Central Park
Durham Parks and Recreation offers a summer concert and movie series on Saturdays during June 8-Aug. 17. Both series are free and open to the public. Food vendors will be on site and food will be available for purchase. 2019 movie titles include: June 22 Family Night (check back soon), July 20 Kid's Night - Ferdinand, Aug. 17 Throwback Night - Bull Durham (help celebrate Durham's 150th Birthday).


GARNER

Friday Family Flick and Camping
facebook.com/townofgarner
921 Buffaloe Road, Lake Benson Park
919-661-6982
Free movies screened on select Fridays May 24 through July 26 at 8:30 p.m. There is also an overnight camping option ($12/family for town residents; $16/family for nonresidents). Registration for camping is required; no registration necessary for the movie. 2019 titles include: Incredibles 2, Smallfoot, Mary Poppins Returns.

Movie Night on the Back Lawn
facebook.com/townofgarner
125 Avery St., back Lawn of the Garner Performing Arts Center
Spend Thursday evenings at 8 p.m. under the stars from May 23 through June 27 with family, food, and fun. Bring lawn chairs and blankets, grab a beer from the local craft brewery on site, enjoy food, Kona Ice of Garner, or popcorn from our vendors or even bring your own picnic. No pets. Parents, use discretion when deciding to bring children under the age of 13. 2019 titles: The Wizard of Oz, First Man, Jaws, Fantastic Beasts 2, Jurassic Park, Captain Marvel (tentative).


HENDERSON

Raleigh Road Outdoor Theatre
facebook.com/raleighroadtheatre
​3336 Raleigh Road
Tickets cost $8 for ages 12 and older, $5 for ages 3-11. Children under age 3 are free. One of only six drive in theaters left in operation in North Carolina. Open Fridays through Sundays. Check website for movie showings. 


KNIGHTDALE

First Friday Films
facebook.com/knightdalenc
810 North First Avenue, Knightdale Station Park Amphitheater
The evening features a family friendly film, and local sweet and savory food trucks the first Friday in May,  June and August. Activities start at 7:30 p.m.; movie starts at 8 p.m. Bring your blankets and chairs. 2019 titles include Incredibles 2, Ralph Breaks the Internet, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World.


MORRISVILLE

Morrisville Movies
facebook.com/townofmorrisville/
1520 Morrisville Parkway 
Free movies will be shown at Field #1 at Morrisville Community Park. Go early to get a good spot and enjoy dinner from local food trucks. Movies are family-friendly and begin at dark. Enjoy bounce houses and music at 5:30 p.m. before the movie begins. Movies begin at approximately 7:30 p.m. Check website for dates. 


RALEIGH

North Carolina Museum of Art Summer Films
facebook.com/ncartmuseum
2110 Blue Ridge Road
919-839-6262
Enjoy an outdoor movie series on the lawn Fridays and Saturdays from June 1-Sept. 21. Picnics are welcome. Parents please note: many screenings are family-friendly, but there are a few R-rated titles each season. Prices vary for music parties, which include special activities and are not included in members’ free movie benefits. 2019 titles include: Isle of Dogs, Battle of the Rom-Coms Winner, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, First Man (50th anniversary of the moon landing), Alien (40th anniversary), Captain Marvel, Free Solo, The Big Lebowski, The Hate U Give, Roma.

Movies in the Garden
301 Pogue St., Stephenson Amphitheatre next to the Raleigh Rose Garden
Enjoy five free outdoor movies on Thursdays July 11– Aug. 8. Movies in the Garden is a family-friendly event, showing movies that are rated G, PG and PG-13. Concessions (including cold adult beverages provided by Raleigh Brewing) will be available for purchase. Food trucks will be at each show. Please, no outside alcohol, as this is a city park, but feel free to bring cushions/blankets/chairs. Gates open and pre-show activity begins at 7:00 p.m. and movies starts at 8:30 p.m. 2019 titles include: Mary Poppins Returns, Bohemian Rhapsody, Beetlejuice, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Mama Mia! Here We Go Again. 

 

This article was originally written in 2014 and updated May 16, 2019 by Lauren Bell Isaacs.

 

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Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Road
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Erwin Road
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Sponsor: Mindful Families of Durham
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Cost: Free

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Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
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Flaherty Park Community Center
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Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
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Cary’s popular food truck rally also features music from local performers.

Cost: Free

Where:
Downtown Cary
, NC  27511


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Cost: Free

Where:
Downtown Park
319 S. Academy St.
Cary, NC  27511
View map »


Website »

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Cost: Free

Where:
Borden Building and Grounds
820 Clay Street
Raleigh, NC  27605
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Sponsor: Historic Resources and Museum Programs
Telephone: 919-996-4364
Contact Name: Borden Building at Fletcher Park
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Cost: $44/resident, $57/nonresident

Where:
Herbert C. Young Community Center
101 Wilkinson Ave.
Cary, NC
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Drop by the cybrary for storytime with a librarian. Activity Room 4. Preschool and kindergarten ages. No registration necessary. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Carrboro Cybrary
100 N Greensboro St
Carrboro, NC  27510
View map »


Sponsor: Orange County Public Library
Telephone: 919-918-7387
Contact Name: Cybrary
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Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
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Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
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Cost: See website for fees

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Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
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Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
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The world famous Glenn Miller Orchestra brings timeless classics like In the Mood, Moonlight Serenade, Chattanooga Choo Choo, Pennsylvania 6-5000, String of Pearls and Tuxedo Junction back to the...

Cost: $50-$70/person

Where:
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts
2 East South Street
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Sponsor: Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts
Telephone: 919-996-8700
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Cost: Free

Where:
Locopops Dessert Cafe
2618 Hillsborough St.
Durham, NC  27705
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Website »

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Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
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Preschoolers (ages 3-5 with accompanying adult) meet a real turtle and hike to see others.  Play turtle games and bring home a rock 'turtle' in a terrarium you design. Preregister online using...

Cost: $5

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


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

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Sign up for a Raleigh scavenger hunt and put on your best Nick Cage impression as you seek out the national treasures hidden in Raleigh. Via an app, be guided through the cultural, historical,...

Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
Website »

More information

Enjoy tea time for the whole family. Samples of hot tea, cold tea, and kombucha will be provided, along with games and family fun.

Cost: Free

Where:
IngenuiTea Kombucha Coffee & Tea
514 E Williams St
APEX, NC  27502
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Sponsor: IngenuiTea Brews
Telephone: 919-438-3684
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Cost: Free

Where:
Immanuel
1017 Sunset Ave
Clinton, NC  28328
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Telephone: 910-592-3854
Contact Name: Will Matthews
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Join park staff for an informal fishing experience for the whole family. Bring your own poles or borrow one of ours through the Tackle Loaner Program. Bait and basic instruction are provided. All...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Lake Crabtree County Park
1400 Aviation Pkwy.
Morrisville, NC  27560
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Sponsor: Lake Crabtree County Park
Telephone: 919-460-3355
Contact Name: Carol Cunningham
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Cost: $9/resident, $11/nonresident

Where:
Bond Park Community Center
801 High House Rd.
Cary, NC  27513
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Website »

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Kids ages 6-9 discover the creatures that live in the pond and streams at the Preserve.  The focus will be hands-on outdoor investigation and the study of living things in their habitat. ...

Cost: $5

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


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

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Parent and child ages 2-5 water plants in the native wildflower gardens. Register online. Choose course #124907.

Cost: Free

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


Telephone: 919-387-5980
Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Sign up for a Raleigh scavenger hunt and put on your best Nick Cage impression as you seek out the national treasures hidden in Raleigh. Via an app, be guided through the cultural, historical,...

Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
Website »

More information

Ages 11 and older with special needs learn the basics of archery. Register online. Choose course #124599.

Cost: $15/resident, $20/nonresident

Where:
Bond Park Community Center
801 High House Rd.
Cary, NC  27513
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: General Admission

Where:
TreeRunner Raleigh
12804 Norwood Rd
Raleigh, NC  27613
View map »


Sponsor: N/A
Telephone: 919-410-7347
Contact Name: Jami Sowers

More information

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Cost: $40

Where:
The Poe Center for Health Education
224 Sunnybrook Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27610
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 11 and older with special needs stroll through the woods. Register online. Choose course #124384.

Cost: $2/resident, $3/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC  27518
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Sign up for a Raleigh scavenger hunt and put on your best Nick Cage impression as you seek out the national treasures hidden in Raleigh. Via an app, be guided through the cultural, historical,...

Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
Website »

More information

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Cost: $9/resident, $12/nonresident

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


Telephone: 919-387-5980
Website »

More information

Enjoy a party and summer movie under the stars. Purchase advance tickets online. 

Cost: $7/nonmember. Free for members and ages 6 and younger.

Where:
North Carolina Museum of Art
2110 Blue Ridge Road
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: $5/person

Where:
Renaissance Centre for the Arts
405 Brooks St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Support local artists as they perform in Wake Forest.

Cost: $5/person

Where:
Renaissance Centre for the Arts
405 Brooks St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: See website for fees

Where:
1720 Guess Road
Durham, NC  27701


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Durham Central Park
501 Foster St.
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: FREE

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


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

More information

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Cost: $5/Adult, 4$/Senior (60+), $3/Child (7-16), 6&Younger Free

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Road
Raleigh, NC  27603
View map »


Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Duke Homestead
2828 Duke Homestead Rd.
Durham, NC  27705
View map »


Website »

More information

Preschoolers (ages 3-5 accompanied by an adult) meet a real turtle and hike to see others.  Play turtle games and bring home a rock 'turtle' in a terrarium you design. Preregister online using...

Cost: $5

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


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

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
North Carolina Museum of History
5 E. Edenton Street
Raleigh, NC  27502
View map »


Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Morgan Imports
113 S. Gregson St.
Durham, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Celebrate the wonders of the moon with a story and activity.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble Cary
760 S.E. Maynard Rd.
Cary, NC  27511
View map »


Website »

More information

Ages 18 months-5 years with special needs enjoy educational and therapeutic toys with caregiver. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Flaherty Park Community Center
1226 N. White St.
Wake Forest, NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

Sign up for a Raleigh scavenger hunt and put on your best Nick Cage impression as you seek out the national treasures hidden in Raleigh. Via an app, be guided through the cultural, historical,...

Cost: See website for fees

Where:
Downtown Raleigh
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
View map »


Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
Website »

More information

For almost 200 years, farmers brought their wheat and corn to what is now Yates Mill to have their grains ground into flour and meal. Today, you can stop by the Yates Mill visitor center to see a...

Cost: Free

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Road
Raleigh, NC  27603
View map »


Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675
Website »

More information

Create your own apron and bake your own individual cake. Register online. Choose course #124900.

Cost: $35/resident, $45/nonresident

Where:
Herbert C. Young Community Center
101 Wilkinson Ave.
Cary, NC
View map »


Website »

More information

Celebrate graphic novels with activities including drawing, writing and exploring favorite series.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble Cary
760 S.E. Maynard Rd.
Cary, NC  27511
View map »


Website »

More information

Enjoy a summer movie under the stars to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Purchase advance tickets online. 

Cost: $7/nonmember. Free for members and ages 6 and younger.

Where:
North Carolina Museum of Art
2110 Blue Ridge Road
Raleigh, NC  27607
View map »


Website »

More information

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