15 Don’t-Miss Annual Events in the Triangle
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.
FIRST NIGHT RALEIGH
Raleigh; New Year's Eve
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
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
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.
N.C. SCIENCE FESTIVAL
Throughout Triangle and North Carolina; April
Statewide festival featuring hundreds of science and technology-events, many of which occur in the Triangle.
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
The town's art festivals in April and August showcase works by hundreds of artisans, live entertainment, kids activities and more.
Arts and crafts, live music, food stands and kids activities highlight this festival in historic downtown Apex.
GOT TO BE N.C. FEST
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.
AMERICAN DANCE FESTIVAL
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
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.
This N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences annual event features insect-infested educational and entertaining displays, exhibits and activities.
A weekend-long event that hosts visual artists, performing acts, kids entertainment and activities.
This multi-day celebration features culture, music and food from around the globe.
N.C. STATE FAIR
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
Floats, marching bands, performing groups and specialty vehicles usher in the holiday season in downtown Raleigh.
This article was updated Dec. 7, 2015.