2017 Holiday Events: Santa Visits, Christmas Tree Lightings, Sleigh Rides, Parades, Festivals

Tickets for many events are on sale now


Published:

Be dazzled by Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker,” which takes place Dec. 13-14 in Durham.

Photo courtesy of Moscow Ballet

Usher in the holiday season at these upcoming events in the Triangle, listed alphabetically by town. Mark your calendar for festive parades, tree-lighting ceremonies, gingerbread house displays and opportunities to meet Santa. Tickets for many events are on sale now. Plans can change based on inclement weather or other unexpected conditions, so be sure to check with the event’s sponsors before heading out. Events are free unless otherwise noted. 

Jump to events in:

Apex

Cary

Chapel Hill

Durham

Raleigh

Other Triangle Towns

 

APEX

Christmas on Salem Street in downtown Apex Dec. 1, 5-9 p.m., features sleigh rides, caroling and a tree-lighting ceremony. The following day, families can enjoy a pancake breakfast at the Salem Street firehouse and take pictures with Santa at the Halle Cultural Arts Center in the afternoon before the town’s Christmas parade, which begins at 5 p.m. apexdowntown.com/downtown-apex-events.

The Halle Cultural Arts Center presents two holiday productions in December. See Infinity Ballet perform “Nutcracker Dances” Dec. 1-3, and two musicals in one with “A Fairy Tale Christmas Carol” and “The Great Big Holiday Bake Off: A Confectionary Christmas Musical” Dec. 8-10. Visit etix.com for show times and to purchase tickets.

 

CARY

Waverly Place in Cary hosts a tree-lighting ceremony Nov. 17, 6-8:30 p.m., featuring the sounds of Cary Youth Voices and a visit from Santa. The tree will be lit at approximately 6:55 p.m. On Nov. 18, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., enjoy a holiday open house with horse and carriage rides, a performance by The Magic Pipers and appearances by Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph. waverlycary.com

See 20 light displays illuminated by thousands of LED lights at the Chinese Lantern Festival at Booth Amphitheatre in Cary Nov. 24-Jan. 14. The hours are 6-10 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. The festival also features cultural performances and artisans. Purchase tickets, $15 for adults and $10 for ages 3-17, online at boothamphitheatre.com/nc-chinese-lantern-festival-cary.


Light up the holidays at the chinese lantern festival Nov. 24-jan.14. photo courtesy of booth amphitheatre

Cary Players present “A Christmas Story” Dec. 1-4 at the Cary Arts Center. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets, $20 for adults and $18 for kids. etix.com.

Cary’s annual Heart of the Holidays festivities take place Dec. 2. Learn about Victorian holiday traditions and enjoy horse-drawn carriage rides at the Page-Walker Arts and History Center, a historic 1868 hotel, 4-6 p.m. The town’s tree-lighting ceremony takes place at 6 p.m. at the Town Hall Campus and features live performances and the unveiling of a community tree decorated with handcrafted ornaments. See featured entries in the town’s 7th Annual Gingerbread House Competition in downtown Cary and also at the Cary Arts Center through December. townofcary.org.

The 2017 Cary Christmas Parade, sponsored by the Cary Jaycees, is Dec. 9 at 1 p.m. See the website for the parade route. caryjaycees.org/cary-jaycees-christmas-parade.

Cary Ballet Company presents “The Nutcracker Suite” Dec. 15-17 at the Cary Arts Center. Purchase tickets, $21-$25, at etix.com/ticket/v/8087/cary-arts-center.

Cary’s Menorah Lighting is Dec. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at the Cary Arts Center. The town’s Kwanzaa Celebration is Dec. 29, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. townofcary.org.

 

CHAPEL HILL

Holiday carolers highlight Chapel Hill’s Downtown Tree Lighting Ceremony Nov. 26, 6-7 p.m., at Memorial Garden of University Baptist Church on Columbia Street. Children can have their pictures taken with Santa and Mrs. Claus. downtownchapelhill.com/celebrations.

 

Opportunities to dine with Santa on select days, gingerbread house-making, a gingerbread house display, horse-drawn carriage rides and more highlight the annual Twelve Days of Christmas event series at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill Dec. 1-Jan. 2. 12daysevents.com.



Carolina Inn sparkles with its Twelve Days of Christmas event Dec. 1-Jan. 2. photo courtesy of emily kristine photography
 

Carolina Ballet presents “The Nutcracker” Dec. 2-3 at Memorial Hall in Chapel Hill. See website for show times and to purchase tickets at carolinaperformingarts.org.

Themed floats, marching bands and Santa welcome families to the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Holiday Parade Dec. 9, which begins at 10 a.m. at Morehead Planetarium on E. Franklin Street in downtown Chapel Hill and ends at noon on Main Street in Carrboro. townofchapelhill.org.

Symphonic arrangements and beloved holiday melodies highlight North Carolina Symphony’s Classic Holiday Pops concert Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. at Memorial Hall in Chapel Hill. Purchase tickets, $43-$73, at ncsymphony.org.

PlayMakers Repertory Company presents “A Christmas Carol” at Kenan Theatre on the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill campus Dec. 13-17. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets, which start at $15. playmakersrep.org.

Enjoy family-friendly activities, performances and a kids’ countdown under the stars to ring in the new year at Morehead Planetarium’s Night Lights: A Family New Year’s Eve Celebration Dec. 31, 4-6 p.m. Purchase tickets online at moreheadplanetarium.org.

 

DURHAM

The Durham Performing Arts Center presents two holiday shows in November. “Hip Hop Nutcracker,” Nov. 24 at 2 and 7 p.m., is a contemporary re-imagination of Tchaikovsky’s timeless music. The Brian Setzer Orchestra performs rockabilly song arrangements in its 14th Annual “Christmas Rocks! Tour” Nov. 26 at 7:30 p.m. Purchase tickets online. dpacnc.com.

Duke Chorale’s Christmas Concert, which features traditional carols for the entire audience to sing and stories and special treats for children, is Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. at Duke Chapel. Admission is one nonperishable food item for needy families in Durham. music.duke.edu.

The American Tobacco Tower Lighting in Durham takes place Dec. 1, 6-8 p.m., featuring performances by local dance groups and choirs. At the conclusion of the event, estimated at 7 p.m. when the tower lights, the holiday fun continues over at Diamond View Park as the Home for the Holidays playhouses come to life and the bidding begins. Santa Selfies available near the Trosa Tree Lot. americantobaccocampus.com.

Celebrate an 1870s Christmas as Duke Homestead in Durham hosts its annual Christmas by Candlelight event Dec. 1 and 8, 6:45-9:15 p.m., featuring costumed interpreters leading visitors on candlelit tours of the decorated homestead. Tickets are $5 per person and free for ages 1 and younger. Purchase tickets online. dukehomestead.org.


experience the holidays as they were celebrated in the 1870's at duke homestead. photo courtesy of bryan wiggins

 

Enjoy Christmas at Historic Stagville in Durham Dec. 2, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Admission is free. Learn about the Christmas traditions of enslaved and free people in North Carolina. After dark, see some of the slaves’ quarters and sharecroppers’ homes lit by lanterns as guides share stories of the holidays during these times. Lantern tours, begin at 5 p.m., and are $5 per person and free for ages 1 and younger. Advance ticket purchase is recommended by calling 919-620-0120. stagville.org.

The City of Durham hosts its annual holiday parade with all the trimmings Dec. 2 at 11 a.m. in downtown Durham. A Holiday Fun Fest takes place later that afternoon, 1-4 p.m., at the American Tobacco Campus featuring live entertainment, bounce houses, snow sledding, train rides and a visit with Santa. The city’s Kwanzaa Celebration is Dec. 30, 3-5 p.m., at the Holton Career and Resource Center. durhamnc.gov.

Singer and songwriter Robert Earl Keen presents “Merry Christmas from the Fam-O-Lee” show at Carolina Theatre Dec. 3 at 8 p.m. Purchase tickets, $34-$39, at carolinatheatre.org.

The vocal quartet 98° performs songs from its new Christmas album, “Let It Snow,”  Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Durham Performing Arts Center. The following evening, Dec. 6, Grammy-award winner Fantasia delivers a soulful holiday show titled, “Christmas After Midnight” in the same venue at 7:30 p.m. Purchase tickets at ticketmaster.com.

Carolina Ballet presents “The Nutcracker” Dec. 9-10 at the Durham Performing Arts Center. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets at carolinaballet.com.

Moscow Ballet’s “Great Russian Nutcracker” takes place Dec. 13-14 at 7 p.m. at Carolina Theatre in Durham and features world-class Russian dancers, nesting dolls and giant puppets. Purchase tickets online at ticketmaster.com.

Christmas in the Piedmont During the Civil War at Bennett Place State Historic Site in Durham celebrates the season Dec. 16, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., with living historians who demonstrate cooking and gift-wrapping in the 19th century. Santa visits with families during the event. Candlelit tours of the site take place from 6-9 p.m. Tickets are required for the tours and are $3 for adults and $2 for ages 5-16. 919-383-4345. bennettplacehistoricsite.com.

 

RALEIGH

Santa's Magical Arrival is Nov. 10, 5-8 p.m., at Triangle Town Center. The festive event includes performances by local school groups, a magic show, s'mores station, sledding and more. A Holiday Light Show Spectacular, featuring a 30-foot Christmas tree and special lighting choreographed to holiday music, runs nightly through Dec. 24. triangletowncenter.com.

Classic cars, holiday-themed floats, marching bands and large helium balloons highlight the ABC 11 Raleigh Christmas Parade Nov. 18, 9:30 a.m., in downtown Raleigh. The parade begins at the corner of Hillsborough and St. Mary’s streets. grma.org/christmas-parade.


DON'T MISS THE SPECTACULAR wral christmas parade. PHOTO COURTESY OF nieto photography

Lafayette Village in Raleigh ushers in the holiday season with its Lighting of the Tree, Nov. 18, 3-6 p.m.,  8450 Honeycutt Rd., Raleigh. lafayettevillageraleigh.com.

North Hills in Raleigh welcomes families to its Tree-Lighting Celebration Nov. 18, 3:30-7:30 p.m., featuring visits with Santa, snow sledding, trackless train rides, kids' crafts and activities, a bounce house and a vendor village. visitnorthhills.com.

North Carolina Symphony Presents “The Polar Express” Nov. 22, 3 p.m., in Meymandi Concert Hall. Listen for the sounds of silver bells and climb aboard in your pajamas for a first-class journey on “The Polar Express.” Come early to meet Santa, and enjoy kid-friendly activities and a traditional singalong. Purchase tickets for $14-$29 at ticketmaster.com.

North Carolina Symphony presents “Home Alone” Nov. 24, 7:30 p.m.; and Nov. 25, 3 p.m. in Meymandi Concert Hall. See the comedy classic on a big screen as the symphony plays the delightful score by John Williams live. Purchase tickets for $14-$29. at ticketmaster.com.

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical” lands at Fletcher Theater for performances Nov. 24-Dec. 24. Purchase tickets, $15 and up, at ticketmaster.com.

Theatre in the Park presents “A Charlie Brown Christmas” Dec. 1-10. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets. Theatre in the Park’s production of “A Christmas Carol” is Dec. 6-10 at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium and Dec. 14-17 at the Durham Performing Arts Center. See the website for show times and purchase tickets at ticketmaster.com.

Raleigh Little Theatre presents its holiday sugarplum, “Cinderella,” Dec. 1-17. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets. raleighlittletheatre.org.


raleigh little theatre's "cinderella" charms audiences of all ages dec. 1-17. PHOTO COURTESY OF carrie santiago

Make holiday memories by riding NC By Train’s Santa Train round trip from Raleigh to Charlotte Dec. 2. The train ride features a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, carolers and refreshments. Call 800-298-7246 or see the website for departure times and fares. ncdot.gov.

The Sleigh Rides and Cider event at Historic Oak View County Park is Dec. 2, 5-7:30 p.m., and offers families horse-drawn carriage rides, hot apple cider, live music, holiday activities and more. Santa also makes an appearance. wakegov.com/parks/oakview.

The Downtown Raleigh Tree Lighting Celebration is Dec. 2, 4-8 p.m., at City Plaza. This year’s celebration features a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, live entertainment, a 40-foot slide, amusements and activities, holiday refreshments, and Gingerbread House and Holiday Hound Costume contests. The fun culminates in City Plaza with the Mayor’s lighting of the 35-foot Norway spruce tree. facebook.com/events/124812554869827.

Governor Roy Cooper and First Lady Kristin Cooper host the State Capitol Tree Lighting Dec. 6, 5-7:30 p.m., which includes live music and activities the whole family will enjoy. facebook.com/NCStateCapitol.

Mordecai Historic Park’s Holiday Open House in Raleigh welcomes families Dec. 9, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and Dec. 10, 1-4 p.m. Tour the home as it would have been decorated for Christmas during colonial days through the World War II era. Admission is free. Take one of the lantern tours, which run 5-8:30 p.m. on Dec. 9, through the house and grounds to watch vignettes of the Mordecai family, soldiers and enslaved people during the Civil War. Purchase tickets, $5 per person, at reclink.raleighnc.gov (click on “advanced search” and search for “Mordecai”).

Raleigh Ringers’ Holiday Concerts Dec. 9-10 at Meymandi Concert Hall showcase unique interpretations of sacred, secular and popular music arranged just for handbells. See the website for show times and to purchase tickets. ticketmaster.com.

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s holiday spectacle, “Ghosts of Christmas Eve,” is Dec. 13 at 7:30 p.m. at PNC Arena. ticketmaster.com.

Carolina Ballet presents “The Nutcracker” Dec. 15-24 at Raleigh Memorial auditorium. See the website for show times and purchase tickets at carolinaballet.com.

The renowned Raleigh Boychoir presents “Carols of Christmas” Dec. 22 at 7 p.m. at Edenton Street United Methodist Church. Purchase tickets, $8-$18, at raleighboychoir.org.

First Night Raleigh takes place Dec. 31, 2 p.m.-midnight, in downtown Raleigh. Enjoy a variety of family-friendly activities prior to the Acorn Drop at midnight. A First Night button, $10, is required for entry. firstnightraleigh.com.

ring in the new year at First night raleigh. PHOTO COURTESY Of artsplosure/first night raleigh
 

OTHER TRIANGLE TOWNS

Benson’s Christmas on Main event is Dec. 1, 6-9 p.m., and showcases live entertainment, a tree-lighting ceremony at 6:45 p.m. and a visit with Santa after the parade, which begins at 7 p.m. benson-chamber.com.

Visit Lights on the Neuse in Clayton, a 1-mile, tractor-pulled Christmas hayride through a magical extravaganza of holiday lights on select nights in November and December. The event also offers a sweet shop and visit with Santa. See the website for hours and to purchase tickets. lightsontheneuse.com.

Hubb's Farm in Clinton presents “The Hubb’s Express and Santa Too!” Dec. 1-2, 5-10 p.m., featuring a ride on the Hubb’s Express Train, time with Santa, a showing of “The Polar Express” and more. Purchase tickets online for $20 (free for ages 1 and younger), or call 910-564-6709. Tickets will not be sold at the gate. hubbsfarmnc.com.

Main Street in Clayton is transformed into a Christmas Village Nov. 30, 5:30-8 p.m., with live music, a visit with Santa, train rides and a live Nativity. The town’s tree-lighting ceremony begins at 7:45 p.m. at Town Square. Enjoy a holiday parade on Main Street Dec. 9 at 3 p.m. downtownclayton.org.

Families in Fuquay-Varina can enjoy choir performances and holiday activities downtown with a tree-lighting ceremony  on Nov. 30, 6-8 p.m. The annual Fuquay-Varina Christmas Parade is Dec. 3 at 3 p.m. on Main Street. fuquay-varinadowntown.com.

Garner’s Light Up Main event, Dec. 1, 6-8 p.m., showcases a tree-lighting ceremony and a visit by Santa and Mrs. Claus. Face painting, a local talent showcase and kids’ crafts round out the fun. The Garner Christmas Parade on Main Street is Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. and features dance troupes, marching bands, Santa and decorated floats. garnernc.gov.

Hillsborough’s Light Up the Night Holiday Parade is Dec. 2, 4:45-6:30 p.m., and features a parade that begins on Corbin Street and ends at E. Margaret Lane. A tree lighting will take place at the old courthouse lawn at 6:30 p.m. hillsboroughchamber.com.

Main Street Christmas in Holly Springs is Dec. 8, 6-8 p.m. The annual event includes hayrides, crafts and live entertainment. Mrs. Claus reads stories at the Cultural Center and Santa visits with children at town hall until 7:15 p.m. The night concludes with the town’s tree-lighting ceremony at 8 p.m. at the Cultural Center. The Happy Holly Days Parade on Main Street in Holly Springs takes place Dec. 9 at 11 a.m. hollyspringsnc.us.

During Christmas on First Avenue in Knightdale, kids can visit with Mrs. Claus and Santa’s elves at Knightdale Station Park Amphitheater Dec. 1, 6-8 p.m. The event also features a tree-lighting ceremony and fun activities. Santa visits at the end of the evening. Knightdale’s Christmas parade takes place Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. knightdalenc.gov.

Four Oaks’ Christmas Festival on Main Street Dec. 2, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., includes a visit from Santa, children’s activities, vendors and the town’s annual Christmas Parade at 11 a.m. fouroakschamber.com.

St. Nicholas visits with kids at Mebane’s Hometown Holiday Celebration Nov. 18, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. The event also features carolers, a tree-lighting ceremony, marshmallow roasts, a snow slide and crafts. The Mebane Christmas Parade takes place Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. visitalamance.com.

Park West Village in Morrisville hosts a Winter Wonderland Nov. 17, 5-9 p.m., featuring train rides, story time with Santa, live music and magical winter lights. parkwestvillage.net.

Morrisville’s Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony, featuring musical entertainment, cookies, crafts and a visit from Santa, is Dec. 1, 7-9 p.m. at Indian Creek Trailhead. townofmorrisville.org.

Hop aboard an open train car with all the trimmings when New Hope Valley Railway in New Hill hosts its annual Holiday Santa Trains. Santa Claus and his elf visit with each child and pose for photos. Trains run Dec. 2, 3, 9 and 10, departing at 9:30 a.m.,11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Visit the website for prices and to purchase tickets. triangletrain.com.

Ride the rails with new hope valley railway in december. photo courtesy of new hope valley railway

The Pittsboro Christmas Parade is Dec. 10 at 3 p.m. and features seasonal floats, tractors, vintage vehicles, Santa and more. pittsboronc.gov.

The Selma Christmas Parade is Dec. 5 at 7 p.m. and features Santa under the stars. selma-nc.com.

Smithfield's annual Christmas Tree Lighting is Dec. 7 at 7 p.m. at the corner of Third and Market streets. Enjoy hot chocolate, live entertainment and an appearance from Santa. The annual Smithfield Christmas Parade is Dec. 14 at 7 p.m. on Market Street. smithfield-nc.com.

The Lighting of Wake Forest on Dec. 1, 6-8:30 p.m., includes performances by local choirs, complimentary hot cocoa and cookies, a visit from Santa arriving on a Wake Forest fire truck, a children's craft activity, and the lighting of the town’s 30-foot Christmas tree at Town Hall on South Brooks Street. The Downtown Merchants Association hosts a Holiday Open House Dec. 2, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., when kids can enjoy free pictures with Santa and face painting at The Cotton Company Event Gallery on South White Street. The town’s holiday parade, featuring high school marching bands, more than 100 colorful floats and Santa, takes place Dec. 9 at 1 p.m. in downtown Wake Forest. wakeforestnc.gov.

Take a covered wagon hayride through the holiday lights, and enjoy bonfires, a jumping pillow, train rides and music at Hill Ridge Farms’ Festival of Lights in Youngsville Nov. 23-Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, and 5-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Admission is $10 for ages 2 and older Sun., Mon., Tues and Thurs.; $12 for ages 2 and older Fri.-Sat.; and $8 on Wed. hillridgefarms.com.

Take the family for caroling and a tree lighting hosted by the mayor in downtown Zebulon Dec. 2 at 5 p.m.  Zebulon Christmas Parade is Dec. 3 at 2 p.m. Kids can pose for photos with Santa Dec. 1, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Town Hall. zebulonchamber.org.

Updated Nov. 15, 2017

Janice Lewine is the associate editor at Carolina Parent.

 

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Calendar

August 2018

Run Club meets every Sunday at 8 a.m. in Midtown Raleigh or Wake Forest. Stroller friendly; children invited. 

Cost: $10/run or $100/annual pass

Where:
Optimist Park Community Center/Greenways
5900 Whittier Drive
Raleigh, NC  27609
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Sponsor: FIT4MOM
Telephone: 919-348-0472
Contact Name: Missy Currin
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Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

Where:
Nasher Museum of Art
2001 Campus Dr.
Durham, NC  27705
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Take part in a class that teaches individualized ways to foster motor development for your child. Learn about tummy time alternatives, best positions for your baby, how to help your child learn to...

Cost: $18

Where:
Open Arts
1222 Copeland Oaks Dr.
Morrisville, NC  27560
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Sponsor: Babies On The MOVE
Contact Name: Rebecca Quinones
Website »

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Join Mindful Families of Durham, a Buddhist-inspired spiritual community that supports area parents, caregivers, and their children in the practice of mindfulness and the understanding of the...

Cost: Free

Where:
Erwin Road
Durham, NC  27705
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Sponsor: Mindful Families of Durham
Contact Name: Adam, Laura, Josh, Sumi
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Celebrate the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle with vendors, food trucks, free food samples and live music.

Cost: Free

Where:
Durham Armory
220 Foster St.
Durham, NC  27701
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Website »

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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
View map »


Website »

More information

Take part in a class that teaches individualized ways to foster motor development for your child. Learn about carry positions, best positions for your baby, how to help your child learn to crawl,...

Cost: $18

Where:
Open Arts
1222 Copeland Oaks Dr
Morrisville, NC  27560
View map »


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

More information

This back-to-school celebration features indoor and outdoor eating areas, kids' activities, music and more.

Cost: Free

Where:
Hilton Garden Inn at Southpoint
7007 Fayetteville Rd.
Durham, NC  27713
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Enjoy a back-to-school event featuring a food truck rodeo, inside and outside eating areas, kids' activities and more. Take a non-perishable food item for Back Pack Buddies, an Inter-Faith...

Cost: Free

Where:
Hilton Garden Inn at Southpoint
7007 Fayetteville Rd.
Durham, NC  27713
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Sponsor: Spectacular Magazine
Telephone: 919-916-1640
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The Arc of the Triangle, Allegiant Air and The Arc of the North Carolina will co-host a Wings for Autism® event at Raleigh-Durham International Airport in partnership with the Transportation...

Cost: Free

Where:
Raleigh-Durham International Airport
2400 John Brantley Blvd.
Morrisville, NC  27560
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Telephone: 919-942-5119 x117
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The Arc of the Triangle, Allegiant Air and The Arc of the North Carolina will co-host a Wings for Autism® event at Raleigh-Durham International Airport in partnership with the Transportation...

Cost: Free

Where:
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2400 John Brantley Blvd.
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Cost: Free

Where:
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Morrisville, NC  27560
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Telephone: 919-942-5119 x117
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Discover how farmers preserved their food in the days before refrigeration. Learn about drying, pickling, canning and other techniques. All ages.  ages. Registration not...

Cost: Free

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27603
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Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675
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Tour the farm, spend time with farmers who care about the environment and meet friendly animals. Tickets must be purchased online; the farm is not open for drop-ins.

Cost: $10/person

Where:
Hux Family Farm
1923 Shaw Rd.
Durham, NC  27704
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Learn about the importance of trees through games and hands-on activities. Make paper and  discover the goods that we get from trees. All ages with adult. Registration required...

Cost: $1/person

Where:
Crowder County Park
4709 Ten-Ten Rd.
Apex, NC  27539
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Sponsor: Crowder County Park
Telephone: 919-662-2850
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Sunday, August 19, 2:00–3:00 p.m. Want to do more to help out your community park? Do you like history, the environment, agriculture and/or the arts? Consider volunteering at Yates Mill! Join us...

Cost: Free

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Road
Raleigh, NC  27603
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Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675

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Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
View map »


Website »

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Study the vital role that wetland ecosystems play. Net macroinvertebrates, learn how to identify them and discuss their value in the aquatic environment. Wander through some of Lake...

Cost: Free

Where:
Lake Crabtree County Park
1400 Aviation Pkwy.
Morrisville, NC  27560
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Sponsor: Lake Crabtree County Park
Telephone: 191-946-03355
Contact Name: Carol Cunningham
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Enjoy activities inspired by the boo, "Mind Your Manners, B.B. Wolf," by Judy Sierra. Ages 4-9. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Hillsborough Library
137 West Margaret Ln.
Inside McDougle Middle School
Hillsborough, NC  27278
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Sponsor: Orange County Library
Telephone: 191-924-52525
Contact Name: Beth Hawkins
Website »

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Show Less...

Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

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


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Read the story by Eric Carle, and practice counting and observing similarities and differences.  A short walk to look for crickets and other insects. Ages 18 months-3 years with adult....

Cost: $2/child

Where:
Blue Jay Point County Park
3200 Pleasant Union Church Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27614
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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
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Kids hike, make projects and engage in nature activities. Ages 5-8. Register online.

Cost: $9/resident, $12/nonresident

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Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC  27518
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Weekly basic skills cooking class for children aged 5-10 at Whole Foods North Raleigh.  This free class meets each Tuesday at 4 p.m. and is offered by registering in advance...

Cost: Free

Where:
Whole Foods Market (North Raleigh)
8710 Six Forks Road
Raleigh, NC  27615
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Low-cost microcontrollers, such as the Arduino, have revolutionized the way we connect the real and virtual worlds. Learn Arduino programming and create projects using sensors...

Cost: Free

Where:
Parata Systems
106 Roche Dr.
Durham, NC  27703
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Sponsor: TechGirlz
Contact Name: Jenna May
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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: $15/resident, $19/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Raleigh, NC
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Telephone: 919-387-5980
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Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

Where:
Nasher Museum of Art
2001 Campus Dr.
Durham, NC  27705
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Read a story about cows, compare cow breeds, and learn about life on a dairy farm. Explore how milk is made into butter, cheese and other yummy products. Wrap up with an ice cream social and taste...

Cost: $7/child

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27603
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Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675
Contact Name: Rebecca Cope
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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
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Learn about the exciting process that changes caterpillars into butterflies. Visit the butterfly garden while searching for butterflies and caterpillars!. Ages 3-5 with parent. Register online.

Cost: $4/child

Where:
Blue Jay Point County Park
3200 Pleasant Union Church Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27614
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Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

Where:
Nasher Museum of Art
2001 Campus Dr.
Durham, NC  27705
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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
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Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

Where:
Nasher Museum of Art
2001 Campus Dr.
Durham, NC  27705
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Take the fast track to nature in this hands-on study of ecology. Ages 8-12. Register online.

Cost: $9/resident, $12/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC
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Telephone: 919-387-5980
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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
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Sponsor: Pump it Up
Telephone: 919-828-3344
Contact Name: Owner/manager Kellie Paterson McHugh
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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
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Walk through the Cretaceous period, the Jurassic Period and the Triassic period and experience what it was like to be among living dinosaurs. See life-size replicas of adult and baby dinosaurs, dig...

Cost: $20-$34

Where:
Raleigh Convention Center
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Personality Festival is a Roxboro tradition. Enjoy amusements rides along Main Street, food vendors, singers, dancers, craft and merchandise vendors, local businesses and more. Little Miss...

Cost: Free

Where:
Uptown Roxboro
211 N. Main St.
Roxboro, NC  27573
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Sponsor: Roxboro Area Chamber of Commerce
Telephone: 336-599-8333
Contact Name: Melissa
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Kids spend a night out in nature making memories and new friends in an old-fashioned, camp-style program. Ages 8-12. Register online. Choose course #117241

Cost: $15/resident, $19/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Raleigh, NC
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Telephone: 919-387-5980
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Take the family for a night of jigs, reels and anything Celtic. 

Cost: $3/person

Where:
Carrboro Century Center
100 N. Greensboro St.
Carrboro, NC  27510
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Celebrate the end of the "dog days of summer" by joining a park naturalist for an evening hike around the millpond. Learn tips for observing wildlife and find out ways to identify the...

Cost: $1/person

Where:
Historic Yates Mill County Park
4620 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27615
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Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-400-3288
Contact Name: Rebecca Cope
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Take a moonlit stroll down the Trail to the Beaver Creek bridge and back, listening and looking for nocturnal animals. Linger on the bridge to enjoy the wonderful sounds of nature and play some fun...

Cost: $1/person

Where:
American Tobacco Trail
1309 New Hill-Olive Chapel Rd.
Apex, NC  27502
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Sponsor: Harris Lake County Park and the American Tobacco Trail
Telephone: 919-387-2117
Contact Name: Joanne St. Clair
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Morehead Planetarium presents a night of West African storytelling and stargazing at Historic Stagville. Learn about the oral tradition that might have been preserved by enslaved families. After...

Cost: Free. Donations welcome.

Where:
Stagville State Historic Site
5828 Old Oxford Hwy.
Durham, NC  27712
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Telephone: 191-962-00120
Contact Name: Vera Cecelski
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Camp Gladiator takes over the Durham Bulls Athletic Park featuring fun workouts designed for all fitness levels. Enjoy local vendors, music, food, gear and tons of giveaways....

Cost: Free

Where:
Durham Bulls Athletic Park
409 Blackwell St.
Durham, NC  27701
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Sponsor: Camp Gladiator
Telephone: 919-538-7606
Contact Name: Marisa Park
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Walk through the Cretaceous period, the Jurassic Period and the Triassic period and experience what it was like to be among living dinosaurs. See life-size replicas of adult and baby dinosaurs, dig...

Cost: $20-$34

Where:
Raleigh Convention Center
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Enjoy a unique weekend celebrating the history of Tweetsie Railroad, the ET&WNC Railroad and mountain culture.

Cost: $0-$45

Where:
Tweetsie Railroad
300 Tweetsie Railroad Ln.
Blowing Rock, NC  28605
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Sponsor: Tweetsie Railroad
Telephone: 180-052-65740
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Hundreds of artisans from across the Southeast, festival foods, demonstrations, a kids' play area and live music highlight the town's signature arts and...

Cost: Free

Where:
Town Hall Campus
316 N. Academy St.
Cary, NC  27513
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Stretch your way into creative and silly poses. Share fun memories from the summer, like building sand castles, spitting watermelon seeds, and diving into the swimming pool with our friends,...

Cost: $20 -$25

Where:
Funny Girl Farm
504 Erwin Road
Durham, NC  27707
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Telephone: 984-377-3113
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The Salvation Army of Wake County’s 7th annual Most Amazing Race Raleigh will take place Saturday, August 25 at popular locations throughout downtown Raleigh. The scavenger-hunt-like race is...

Cost: Teams must raise $300 to participate

Where:
The Salvation Army of Wake County Corps Community Center
902 Wake Forest Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27604
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Celebrate North Carolina farming culture and history at Duke Homestead. Don't miss the looping contest and Hornworm Race. This event features live music, local arts and crafts vendors, hands-on...

Cost: Free

Where:
Duke Homestead
2828 Duke Homestead Rd.
Durham, NC  27705
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Enjoy backpacks and school supplies while they last. Sponsored by Word of Truth St. Barnabas Presbyterian Church and Carolina Pines Community Center.

Cost: Free

Where:
Carolina Pines Community Center
2305 Lake Wheeler Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27605
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Sponsor: Word of Truth St. Barnabas Presbyterian Church & Carolina Pines Comm Center
Telephone: (919) 831-6435
Contact Name: Tonya Henderson

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Go nutty for nature as children satisfy some of their curiosity about the world around them and parents share in the joy of discovery. Ages 3-5 with parent. Register online.

Cost: $10/resident, $13/nonresident

Where:
Stevens Nature Center/Hemlock Bluffs
2616 Kildaire Farm Rd.
Cary, NC
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Telephone: 919-387-5980
Website »

More information

Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on projects and gallery hunts.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Personality Festival is a Roxboro tradition. Enjoy amusements rides along Main Street, food vendors, singers, dancers, craft and merchandise vendors, local businesses and more. Little Miss...

Cost: Free

Where:
Uptown Roxboro
211 N. Main St.
Roxboro, NC  27573
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Sponsor: Roxboro Area Chamber of Commerce
Telephone: 336-599-8333
Contact Name: Melissa
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Children's booksellers read their favorite picture books. All ages.

Cost: Free

Where:
Quail Ridge Books
4209-100 Lassiter Mill Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27609
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The first Holly Springs Children's Business Fair allows children in Holly Springs and surrounding communities to showcase their entrepreneurial skills by launching their own business. Children...

Cost: Free

Where:
Holly Springs Towne Center
NC55 & New Hill Rd.
Holly Springs, NC  27540
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Sponsor: Infinity Educators, LLC
Telephone: 919-694-1908
Contact Name: Charlene Y. Dunn
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Little ones enjoy storytime.

Cost: Free

Where:
Barnes & Noble
5959 Triangle Town Blvd.
Cary, NC  27616
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View the main power drive and milling machinery while exploring the mill's history and aspects of its preservation. All ages. Registration encouraged online; tickets available inside...

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  27603
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Sponsor: Historic Yates Mill County Park
Telephone: 919-856-6675
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Explore the historic heart of downtown Raleigh on a walking tour of Fayetteville Street. Tours highlight the people, places, architecture and political movements that have shaped...

Cost: Adults (18+) $10; Youth (7-17) $4; Children (6 & under) Free.

Where:
City of Raleigh Museum
220 Fayetteville St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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Join staff for a morning in the gardens. Take a peek at a mini pond, composting area, pollinator garden and children’s garden. Ages 5 and older with family. Register online. 

Cost: $1/person

Where:
Blue Jay Point County Park
3200 Pleasant Union Church Rd.
Raleigh, NC  27614
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Enjoy giveaways, live entertainment, food, inflatables and more. Dog-friendly event.

Cost: Free

Where:
Lake Pine Plaza
US 64
Apex, NC  27523
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Sponsor: Lake Pine Plaza
Telephone: 919-446-5386
Contact Name: Kelly Foster

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Enjoy live music. Take a blanket or lawn chairs. Pets and alcohol not permitted.

Cost: Free

Where:
Apex Nature Park Amphitheatre
2600 Evans Rd.
Apex, NC  27502
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Sponsor: The Halle Cultural Arts Center
Telephone: (919) 249-1120
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Annual Guides

Education Guide

The 2017-18 Education Guide offers 660 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 Triangle Go-To Guide connects you to family fun resources across the Triangle. Plus, find out who our 2018 Readers' Favorites are.