Family-Friendly Fall Festivals in North Carolina

Venture out of town for a day trip or weekend getaway to enjoy one or more of the state's best fests


Published:

Carolina BalloonFest happens Oct. 19-21 at Statesville Regional Airport.

Photo courtesy of Edgar L. Payne

From the mountains to the sea, there's a lot to enjoy about North Carolina in the fall, including fall festivals. Venture out of town for a day trip or weekend getaway to enjoy one or more of the state's best fests.


WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA

North Carolina Apple Festival
Aug. 31-Sept. 3 | Hendersonville
Cost: Free admission
Best for: Those who love freshly picked apples, arts and crafts, festival food, and free entertainment.
What's in it for kids: Family Fun Zone with rides and inflatables. Tickets available for purchase for amusements and attractions.


North Carolina Mountain State Fair
Sept. 7-16 | Fletcher
Cost: $3-$9. Free for ages 5 and younger.
Best for: Those who like to celebrate North Carolina people, agriculture, art and tradition. Enjoy rides, games, high-diving firemen, roaming dinosaurs, The Great Atlanta Puppet Show, the Sea Lion Splash, racing pigs and more.
What's in it for kids: Dinosaurs, puppets, rides, games and three new rides: Cherokee, a new ride for small children; Dalmatians, a spinning ride for older children; and Surfer, an exhilarating ride for teenagers and adults.


Cherokee Indian Fair
Oct. 2-6  | Cherokee
Cost:
$10. Free for ages 6 and younger.
Best for:
Culture and fun seekers. The Cherokee Indian Fair mixes traditional fair entertainment with a Cherokee twist. Dispersed amongst carnival rides and agricultural demonstrations are archery and blowgun demonstrations, cultural art, dance and music.
What’s in it for kids: Unique games, such as stickball and archery. Wednesday is Children's Day with gates opening at 9 a.m. and children 17 and younger being admitted free. Enjoy kid-focused performers, a baby-crawling competition, a turtle-crawling competition, a longest-hair contest, and a youth stickball tournament.  


Sugar Mountain Oktoberfest
Oct. 13-14 | Sugar Mountain Resort, Sugar Mountain
Cost:
Free
Best for: Fans of German culture, cuisine and beer. In addition to typical Oktoberfest festivities, food and drink, Sugar Mountain Oktoberfest includes high school band performances, ski chair-lift rides, and plenty of arts and crafts.
What’s in it for kids: Hayrides, inflatable bounce houses, and Sugar Bear and Sweetie Bear mascot appearances. Unlike most Oktoberfest festivals, this one is family-friendly.

Families play games and have fun with inflatables at Oktoberfest

Photo courtesy of Todd Bush Photography 

Kids enjoy bounce houses and games at Sugar Mountain Oktoberfest.


Lake Eden Arts Festival
Oct. 18-21 | Black Mountain
Cost:
Day passes start at $56 for adults and weekend passes start at $154 (includes tent campsite). Special prices for youth ages 10-17. Free for ages 9 and younger.
Best for: Fans of eclectic visual and performing arts. LEAF, as the festival is also called, is a world folk-arts celebration with performing artists, family adventure villages, activity centers and vendors as unique as the event itself.
What’s in it for kids: Throughout the festival are eight interactive family villages that include live performances at Roots Village, Stagecoach Theater in Elfhaven Village, old-world crafts in Barn Village, and sports in the World Wide Playfield. 

Girl plays guitar at LEAF

photo courtesy of lake eden arts festival

A young girl plays guitar while enjoying the Lake Eden Arts Festival.


Woolly Worm Festival
Oct. 20-21 | Banner Elk
Cost:
 $6 adults, $4 ages 6-12. Free for ages 5 and younger.
Best for: Lovers of nature, fun and absurdity. The highlight of the annual Woolly Worm Festival is the woolly worm race. The winning worm receives a cash prize of $1,000. There also are juried arts and crafts, rides and food vendors.
What’s in it for kids: The centerpiece of the festival itself, the Woolly Worm Race. Kids can enter their own worm for $5 and you can help them cheer it on. 

photo courtesy of wooly worm Festival

Winners of the Wooly Worm Race receive up to $1,000.


Halloweenfest in Transylvania County
Oct. 27 | Downtown Brevard
Cost:
Free
Best for: Fans of ghouls, ghosts and other Halloween fun. Expect plenty of costume-themed activities, plus a pie bake-off, a pumpkin-carving competition and a beer garden.
What’s in it for kids: It’s a Halloween festival, so come dressed in costumes for contests (pets can enter, too) and a parade. Enjoy trick-or-treating and ghost stories as well.

Halloweenfest

Photo courtesy of Seyl Park

Wear your costume to Halloweenfest in downtown Brevard.


IN THE PIEDMONT

Carolina Renaissance Festival
Weekends Sept. 29-Nov. 18 | Huntersville
Cost:
$24 for adults, $14 ages 5-12. Free for ages 4 and younger.
Best for: Fans of Comic-Con, free spirits who love to role-play, and those looking for fun and laughs while experiencing times of long ago. The Renaissance Festival is a hodgepodge of performance stages, medieval-themed games, arts and crafts, jousting tournaments, and random costumed characters.
What’s in it for kids: Everything is geared toward children with the exception of a few performances labeled for explicit content. Kids love the costume aspect (rentals are available). The Pirates Christmas weekend is a family favorite, and the weekend of Oct. 6 is Kids Free Weekend where kids under 12 are admitted free with a special coupon per paying adult. See website for coupon details.

Knights joust at the Renaissance Festival

Photo courtesy of carolina renaissance festival

Knights joust at the Carolina Renaissance Festival.


Annual NASCAR Day Festival
Oct. 13 | Downtown Randleman
Cost:
 Free
Best for: NASCAR and car fans. The 30th annual event pays homage to NASCAR with race cars on display alongside vintage race cars and other automobiles. Richard Petty is on site to sign autographs from 4-6 p.m.
What’s in it for kids: Children’s games and rides set to the backdrop of NASCAR heroes’ race cars. There’s also a Little Miss and Mister NASCAR Pageant. 

photo courtesy of Jeff Freeman, Randleman chairman

NASCAR Day features old race cars on display.


Mush, Music and Mutts Festival
Oct. 19-20 | Historic Uptown Shelby
Cost:
Admission to the Rotary Chili Cook-off on Friday is $10 and is free for ages 7 and younger. Admission to the Brew Fest on Friday is $30; participants must be age 21 or older. Admission to the Liver Mush Festival on Saturday is free.
Best for: Foodies, beer fans, music aficionados and pet lovers. What started as a festival honoring liver-mush has morphed into a two-day event, which includes a beer festival, chili cook-off, liver-mush recipe competition, Little Miss Liver Mush Pageant, pet costume contest and parade, and plenty of live music honoring Shelby’s bluegrass influences.
What’s in it for kids: Besides the opportunity to dress up your pup in a tutu for the pet costume contest, there’s also a kids’ zone with pumpkin decorating, children’s games, inflatables and new this year — Ghostbusters of NC

photo courtesy of Victorian rose studio, shelby

You don't have to like liver mush to enjoy all the festivities at this event. 


Carolina BalloonFest
Oct. 19-21 | Statesville
Cost:
 $5 for Friday, $20 in advance for Saturday and $15 in advance for Sunday. $10 for a parking pass. Free for ages 12 and younger.
Best for: Fans of hot air balloons or those curious to learn more. Hot air balloon events include two balloon launches a day where 50 balloons take flight, plus tethered balloon rides and a walk-in balloon. There are several non-balloon activities, including beer and wine tastings, live music and artist booths.
What’s in it for kids: There is a special kids’ zone filled with inflatables and magic shows. A climbing wall and a bungee jump cost extra. 

photo courtesy of michele's images

50 balloons take flight at each launch at the Carolina BalloonFest.


Barbecue Festival
Oct. 27 | Uptown Lexington
Cost:
Free
Best for: Lovers of the swine! That is unless you prefer yours prepared Eastern-style (there’s kind of a rivalry). Besides barbecue, the festival hosts a wine garden that showcases Yadkin Valley wineries, arts and crafts, and a 50-ton sand sculpture.
What’s in it for kids: Besides finger-licking good barbecue, the festival caters to kids with the annual pig race, dog team show and bicycle stunt shows and a lumberjack demonstration. There are also rides and games. 

photo courtesy of The Dispatch/Donnie Roberts/Barbecue Festival

Head to Lexington's Barbecue Festival to enjoy good food, alcohol and crafts. 


Rural Hill Sheepdog Trials and Dog Festival
Nov. 10-11 | Huntersville
Cost:
 $7.50-$11. Children 4 and younger are admitted free. Gates open at 10 a.m. and close at 4 p.m. 
Best for: Friends of man’s best friend. The weekend celebrates all things dog with the National Border Collie Sheepherding Championships, dog sports demonstrations and canine history demonstrations.
What’s in it for kids: Plenty of chances to interact with furry four-legged friends, hayrides, tractor exhibits and pumpkin chunking. 


IN THE TRIANGLE

Festifall Arts Festival
Oct. 7 | W. Franklin Street, 
Chapel Hill
Cost: Free
Best for: Art enthusiasts and food-truck fans. The annual arts festival highlights everything from handcrafted artworks to live performances on three stages. Acts cover everything from music to improv and dance.
What’s in it for kids: An interactive kids' zone with science demonstrations, spin art, face painting and a poetry lab. Integrated into the live acts are performances by children's Tae Kwon Do, dance and gymnastics groups.

photo courtesy of katie garcia photography

Enjoy and crafted artworks and live performances on three stages at Festifall.


42nd Annual Selma Rail Roads Festival 
Oct. 5-6 | Downtown Selma
Cost: Free

Best for: Fans of railroads and trains, from model sets to the real thing. In addition to model-train displays and a full-size caboose, the 43rd annual festival features a carnival, parade, pageant and charity run, not to mention a Food Truck Rodeo Friday night.
What’s in it for kids: Plenty of trains on display, plus a kids’ zone and a children’s-focused Little Caboose Run. 


North Carolina State Fair
Oct. 11-21 | North Carolina State Fairgrounds in Raleigh
Cost:
$10 for adults, $5 ages 6-12. Free for ages 5 and younger. Discounts available if you purchase in advance.
Best for: Anyone who loves a county fair and the carnival rides, competitions, concerts and agricultural displays.
What’s in it for kids: Kiddieland and kid-focused competitions like sugar-cube building and cookie decorating. Bigger kids can enjoy the mobile robotics contest. 

photo courtesy of nORTH CAROLINA State Fair

Kids can enjoy an assortment of carnival rides at the North Carolina State Fair.


International Festival of Raleigh
Oct. 26-28 | Raleigh Convention Center, downtown Raleigh
Cost:
 $5-$12. Discounted family passes also available.
Best for: World travelers and those infatuated with learning about different cultures. The three-day event features cultural booths, sidewalk cafes serving international food, fashions from around the globe and an international dance competition.
What’s in it for kids: Children’s cultural performances, art and craft activities and a World Scavenger Hunt passport game. 

Dancers at the International Festival of Raleigh

photo courtesy of PTm photography - palani mohan

Dancers take the stage at the International Festival of Raleigh.


North Carolina Whirligig Festival
Nov. 3-4 | Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park, historic downtown Wilson
Cost:
 Free
Best for: A celebration of the arts, specifically the whimsical, wind-driven whirligigs (giant sculptures made from recycled industrial parts by local folk artist Vollis Simpson). More than 200 vendors (arts, crafts, food, and beverage, including a beer garden), four live entertainment stages, Whirligig Warrior course and competition, where local “American Ninja Warrior” competitors will perform and greet visitors; attendees can also try the course.
What’s in it for kids: The Whirli-Kidz Zone, which features carnival games, bounce houses, an obstacle course, and arts and crafts. Also check out Inspiration Station, where kids of all ages can build and create alongside local artists and which this year will feature a tech component encouraging STEM skills among kids. Extreme inflatables, interactive inflatables and giant climbs/slides are available for teenagers and older to enjoy.


COASTAL

Wilmington Riverfest
Oct. 5-7 | Downtown Wilmington
Cost:
Free
Best for: Art lovers. Organizers do their best to keep the amount of commercial vendors low so the arts and craft vendors can shine. There’s also an accompanying car show and concert series.
What’s in it for kids: A fireworks display on Saturday over the Cape Fear River, and a children’s play area. 


Bryan Richards is a food and travel writer who lives in Charlotte and recently added family travel writer to his credentials with the birth of his son. He’s also the author of The Wandering Gourmand, a culinary and craft beer travel blog. Michele Huggins is the editor of Charlotte Parent.

 

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Calendar

July 2019

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. Stop by the Yates Mill visitor center to see a tabletop display...

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 »

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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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Play, Pose and Jump with your favorite pups! Jumping exclusively for Toddlers (Ages 5 & under) and Parents. ★ Limited Capacity. Previous events have been sold out. Advance Reservations...

Cost: $15

Where:
Skyzone Durham
1720 Guess Road, Ste 90
Northgate
Durham, NC  27701
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Sponsor: Skyzone Durham
Telephone: 919-423-2873
Contact Name: Prahlad Khatri
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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 »

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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 »

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Babies from birth to 24 months of age enjoy a book and sensory growth activities. 

Cost: Free

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


Website »

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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 »

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Create firefly-inspired art to celebrate their magic. ​Ages 5-9. Register onlne. Choose course #125012.

Cost: $23/resident, $30/nonresident

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

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Dragonfly Detectives Camp is a four-day camp at Lake Crabtree County Park for children ages 9–13 years old. Campers will help gather data on dragonfly migration and contribute to a citizen...

Cost: $80 per camper

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

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 »

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Ages 11-17 learn how to make desserts perfect for summer. Register online. Choose course #124728.

Cost: $35/resident, $46/nonresident

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


Website »

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Dragonfly Detectives Camp is a four-day camp at Lake Crabtree County Park for children ages 9–13 years old. Campers will help gather data on dragonfly migration and contribute to a citizen...

Cost: $80 per camper

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 »

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Enjoy storytime with Amy Godfrey. 

Cost: Free

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

Show More...
Show Less...

Dragonfly Detectives Camp is a four-day camp at Lake Crabtree County Park for children ages 9–13 years old. Campers will help gather data on dragonfly migration and contribute to a citizen...

Cost: $80 per camper

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

Preschoolers enjoy the book by Robert Starling. 

Cost: Free

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


Website »

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Join Kendra Scott at North Hills for a special visit from Anna and Elsa, who lead young customers through storytime, songs and other fun surprises. Enjoy sips, snacks & 15% off all...

Cost: Free

Where:
Kendra Scott- North Hills
4321 Lassiter at North Hills Ave
STE F100
Raleigh, NC  27609
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Sponsor: Kendra Scott- Raleigh
Contact Name: Sarah-Butler McKinney
Website »

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Preschoolers (ages 3-5 with accompanying adult) learn hear a story, meet some baby dragonflies and take a walk to see the 'dragons' flying over the pasture and pond. Wear closed-toe shoes that can...

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
View map »


Sponsor: IngenuiTea Brews
Telephone: 919-438-3684
Contact Name: Mark Poole
Website »

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Take your dog to the park to sample agility equipment while strengthening his core and building his confidence.

Cost: Free

Where:
Durham Bulls Athletic Park
409 Blackwell St.
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
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Dragonfly Detectives Camp is a four-day camp at Lake Crabtree County Park for children ages 9–13 years old. Campers will help gather data on dragonfly migration and contribute to a citizen...

Cost: $80 per camper

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

Enjoy giant checkers, giant jenga, bubbles, and special art activities in Downtown Park. All other permanent games (ping pong, bocce ball, chess) will continue to be available.

Cost: Free

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


Website »

More information

Kids ages 6-9 discover the wonders of trees that live at the Preserve.  The focus will be hands-on outdoor investigation and the study of living things in their habitat.  In case of rain,...

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

Meet celebrity and creative Guests from comics, movies, TV, science fiction, fantasy, anime, video games and other genres. Enjoy costume contests, photo opportunities, video game tournaments and...

Cost: $20 and up

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


Website »

More information

This free workshop is for middle school girls, grades 6-8. Take cybersecurity into your own hands! We all rely on electronic information. But what would happen if it was stolen, corrupted or...

Cost: Free: registration required

Where:
Kramden Institute
, NC  27713


Website »

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Shop over 40 local makers selling handmade products.Enjoy food trucks, live music, wine, beer and more. 

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wine Feed
307 S Roxboro St
Durham, NC  27701
View map »


Sponsor: Raleigh Night Market

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Ages 15 and older with special needs socialize with peers, play games, be creative and plan activities based on input from the group. Participants must be able to perform self-care routines...

Cost: Free

Where:
Alston-Massenburg Center
416 N. Taylor St.
Wake Forest , NC  27587
View map »


Website »

More information

When Judah Ben-Hur survives an almost certain death sentence for a crime he did not commit, he begins a quest for vengeance. Angry at God and man alike, he embarks on a journey toward relief and...

Cost: $5-$20

Where:
Spiritual Twist Productions
1250 Aversboro Road
Garner, NC  27529
View map »


Telephone: (919) 977-1976
Contact Name: Kathy MacDonald
Website »

More information

Performances: Thursday July 25th at 7:30pm Friday July 26th at 7:30pm Saturday July 27th at 7:30pm Sunday July 28th matinee at 2:00pm $15.00 Advanced Adult General Admission $12.00 Advanced Student...

Cost: $8-$18

Where:
Cedar Ridge High School
1125 New Grady Brown School Rd.
Hillsborough, NC  27278
View map »


Sponsor: Orange Community Players
Telephone: 919-619-5856
Contact Name: Orange Community Players
Website »

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Kids hike, make projects and engage in nature activities. Ages 5-8. Register online. Choose course #124967.

Cost: $9/resident, $12/nonresident

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


Telephone: 919-387-5980
Website »

More information

Meet celebrity and creative Guests from comics, movies, TV, science fiction, fantasy, anime, video games and other genres. Enjoy costume contests, photo opportunities, video game tournaments and...

Cost: $20 and up

Where:
Raleigh Convention Center
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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

Relax in the courtyard with live music and food. All ages.

Cost: Free

Where:
Edison Johnson Community Center
500 W. Murray Ave.
Durham, NC
View map »


Website »

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Parents, you deserve a Friday night! Leave the childcare to us! Kids will enjoy a fun – filled night, including exhibit play & exploration, a movie, and dinner. This is a drop – off event is...

Cost: $25

Where:
Kidzu Children's Museum
201 S. Estes Dr
Chapel Hill, NC  27514
View map »


Sponsor: Kidzu Children's Museum

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When a tornado whisks Dorothy over the rainbow to the land of Oz, the Kansas farm girl sets off on a magical journey that requires brains, heart, and courage. With Scarecrow, Tinman, and Lion...

Cost: $8-$15

Where:
The Clayton Center
111 E. Second St.
Clayton, NC  27520
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Sponsor: Carolina Youth Theatre
Telephone: 919-553-1737
Website »

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Learn popular Latin dances with Norbeto Herrera. All ages and levels welcome. 

Cost: $3/person

Where:
Carrboro Century Center
100 N. Greensboro St.
Carrboro, NC  27510
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Performances: Thursday July 25th at 7:30pm Friday July 26th at 7:30pm Saturday July 27th at 7:30pm Sunday July 28th matinee at 2:00pm $15.00 Advanced Adult General Admission $12.00 Advanced Student...

Cost: $8-$18

Where:
Cedar Ridge High School
1125 New Grady Brown School Rd.
Hillsborough, NC  27278
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Sponsor: Orange Community Players
Telephone: 919-619-5856
Contact Name: Orange Community Players
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When Judah Ben-Hur survives an almost certain death sentence for a crime he did not commit, he begins a quest for vengeance. Angry at God and man alike, he embarks on a journey toward relief and...

Cost: $5-$20

Where:
Spiritual Twist Productions
1250 Aversboro Road
Garner, NC  27529
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Telephone: (919) 977-1976
Contact Name: Kathy MacDonald
Website »

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See the blockbuster movie at Booth Amphitheatre. Purchase tickets online. 

Cost: $5 for ages 13 and older. Free for ages 12 and younger.

Where:
Booth Amphitheatre
8003 Regency Pkwy.
Cary, NC  27518
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See a movie outdoors under the pines. Gates open at 7 p.m. Purchase tickets online 

Cost: $5 adults, free for ages 12 and younger.

Where:
Booth Amphitheatre
8003 Regency Pkwy.
Cary, NC  27518
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Shop for local handmade arts and crafts from local vendors. 

Cost: Free

Where:
Durham Central Park
501 Foster St.
Durham, NC  27701
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Learn basic canoeing skills and a bit about the millpond's history, then head out to explore the pond's many features as seen only from the water. Canoes, paddles, and life jackets are...

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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Celebrate the night sky by creating a painting inspired by Van Gogh's "Starry Night." ​Ages 8-11. Register online. Choose course #124468.

Cost: $28/resident, $36/nonresident

Where:
Cary Arts Center
101 Dry Ave.
Cary, NC  27511
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Enjoy family-friendly activities in downtown Durham.

Cost: Free

Where:
Golden Belt Campus
800 Taylor St.
Durham, NC  27701
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Look for reptiles, birds and bugs on a morning stroll. All ages with adult. Register online. Choose course #124939.

Cost: $8/resident, $10/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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Meet celebrity and creative Guests from comics, movies, TV, science fiction, fantasy, anime, video games and other genres. Enjoy costume contests, photo opportunities, video game tournaments and...

Cost: $20 and up

Where:
Raleigh Convention Center
500 S. Salisbury St.
Raleigh, NC  27601
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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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Website »

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Learn basic canoeing skills and a bit about the millpond's history, then head out to explore the pond's many features as seen only from the water. Canoes, paddles, and life jackets are...

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 »

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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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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
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Sponsor: LetsRoam!
Telephone: 833-202-7626
Contact Name: LetsRoam!
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Want to get inside Historic Yates Mill? Join us for a half-hour tour (starting at 1:00, 1:30, 2:00, 2:30 & 3:00 p.m.) to view the main power drive and milling machinery while exploring the...

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

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Ages 11-15 use markers to learn the basic stroke sequences that comprise modern calligraphic lettering. Register online. Choose course #124716.

Cost: $23/resident, $30/nonresident

Where:
Cary Arts Center
101 Dry Ave.
Cary, NC  27511
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Website »

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When a tornado whisks Dorothy over the rainbow to the land of Oz, the Kansas farm girl sets off on a magical journey that requires brains, heart, and courage. With Scarecrow, Tinman, and Lion...

Cost: $8-$15

Where:
The Clayton Center
111 E. Second St.
Clayton, NC  27520
View map »


Sponsor: Carolina Youth Theatre
Telephone: 919-553-1737
Website »

More information

East Cloud Kungfu hosts a Parent's Night Out event, featuring a safe environment for kids as they about the wide world of kungfu.   Check it out!...

Cost: $25 first child, $20 each additional child

Where:
East Cloud Kungfu, LLC
5655-A Western Blvd
Raleigh, NC  27606
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Sponsor: East Cloud Kungfu, LLC
Telephone: 252-646-7053
Contact Name: Imari Colon
Website »

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When Judah Ben-Hur survives an almost certain death sentence for a crime he did not commit, he begins a quest for vengeance. Angry at God and man alike, he embarks on a journey toward relief and...

Cost: $5-$20

Where:
Spiritual Twist Productions
1250 Aversboro Road
Garner, NC  27529
View map »


Telephone: (919) 977-1976
Contact Name: Kathy MacDonald
Website »

More information

Performances: Thursday July 25th at 7:30pm Friday July 26th at 7:30pm Saturday July 27th at 7:30pm Sunday July 28th matinee at 2:00pm $15.00 Advanced Adult General Admission $12.00 Advanced Student...

Cost: $8-$18

Where:
Cedar Ridge High School
1125 New Grady Brown School Rd.
Hillsborough, NC  27278
View map »


Sponsor: Orange Community Players
Telephone: 919-619-5856
Contact Name: Orange Community Players
Website »

More information

Enjoy a movie under the stars and play games at 7:15 before the movie begins.

Cost: Free

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

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Join us during National Moth Week to observe some of our night-flying neighbors – MOTHS! Discover how to attract moths and their caterpillars in your backyard, hear about some of their...

Cost: $10 ($9 Members): No Fee for Accompanying Adult

Where:
North Carolina Botanical Garden - Growing Classroom
100 Old Mason Farm Road
Chapel Hill, NC  27517
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Sponsor: NCBG
Telephone: 919-962-2887
Contact Name: Mike Dunn
Website »

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Annual Guides

Education Guide

The 2018-19 Education Guide offers 678 education resources in the Triangle, including area preschools, private schools, public school systems, charter schools, boarding schools, academic resources and an Exceptional Child special section.

The Triangle Go-To Guide

Our Triangle Go-To Guide connects you to family fun resources across the Triangle. In our 2019-20 issue, explore 1,028 resources for family fun.