15 Don’t-Miss Annual Events in the Triangle

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Photo courtesy of Carolyn Scott Photography

What makes the Triangle so appealing to families? In addition to its delightful climate and abundance of hometown charm, the region boasts hundreds of family-friendly events all year long. From arts and crafts festivals and cultural celebrations, to town-sponsored holiday festivities and parades, the following list showcases some of the best our area has to offer.

WINTER

FIRST NIGHT RALEIGH
Raleigh; New Year's Eve
firstnightraleigh.com
This family-oriented New Year's Eve event celebrates the arts with live performances, a children's celebration, a countdown to midnight and grand finale fireworks.

IPREO RALEIGH WINTERFEST
raleighwinterfest.com
Raleigh; December-January. Raleigh's two-month long winter extravaganza features an outdoor skating rink with natural ice and kicks off the holiday season with live performances, kids activities, sledding ramps, Santa's Village and more in City Plaza.

ST. PATRICK'S DAY PARADE AND WEARIN O' THE GREEN FESTIVAL
Raleigh; March
raleighstpats.org
Cultural groups, live performers and other participants march the streets of downtown Raleigh in a parade that ends with a family festival in Moore Square.

SPRING

N.C. SCIENCE FESTIVAL
Throughout Triangle and North Carolina; April
ncsciencefestival.org
Statewide festival featuring hundreds of science and technology-events, many of which occur in the Triangle.

ARTSPLOSURE
Raleigh; May
artsplosure.org
This spring event includes more than 170 visual artists, award- winning musicians, large-scale art installations, crafts and performances for kids.

SPRING DAZE AND LAZY DAZE
Cary; April and August
townofcary.org
The town's art festivals in April and August showcase works by hundreds of artisans, live entertainment, kids activities and more.

APEX PEAKFEST
Apex; May
apexpeakfest.org
Arts and crafts, live music, food stands and kids activities highlight this festival in historic downtown Apex.

GOT TO BE N.C. FEST
Raleigh; May
gottobencfestival.com
Three days of celebrating North Carolina's down-home style includes live bluegrass music, antique farm equipment, rides, arts and crafts, pig races and a draft horse pull competition.

SUMMER

AMERICAN DANCE FESTIVAL
Durham; June-July
americandancefestival.org
Choreographers, dancers, teachers, musicians and critics learn, collaborate and create. ADF Kids features matinee performances by three acclaimed dance companies as well as Kids' Night Out events during evening shows.

FESTIVAL FOR THE ENO RIVER
Durham; July
enoriver.org/festival
This festival features a variety of activities – all with an environmental or cultural connection to the river – and more than 100 performers, craft exhibitors, river activities, workshops and more.

BUGFEST
Raleigh; September
bugfest.org
This N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences annual event features insect-infested educational and entertaining displays, exhibits and activities.

CENTERFEST
Durham; September
centerfest.durhamarts.org
A weekend-long event that hosts visual artists, performing acts, kids entertainment and activities.

FALL

INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL
Raleigh; October
internationalfocusnc.org/festival
This multi-day celebration features culture, music and food from around the globe.

N.C. STATE FAIR
Raleigh; October
ncstatefair.org
This 10-day annual fair and agricultural exposition showcases carnival rides and food, a kids fun park, exhibits, competitions and live entertainment from some of today's hottest acts.

RALEIGH CHRISTMAS PARADE
Raleigh; November
grma.org/christmas-parade
Floats, marching bands, performing groups and specialty vehicles usher in the holiday season in downtown Raleigh.

 

This article was updated Dec. 7, 2015.

Categories: Activities, BT Activities, Community, Family Fun, Family Resource Guide, Food + Fun, GPS, Preschool Activities, Seasonal, Seasonal Fun, SK Activities, Things To Do

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