Weekend Picks: July 22nd-24th


Quail Ridge Books Grand Opening ~ Saturday & Sunday
Quail Ridge Books is celebrating their grand opening in their new permanent North Hills location this weekend. The opening event will feature six prize drawings a day each for kids and adults. Awards include t-shirts, books and other fun gifts! Craft and book activity stations will be available all day both days. And tattoos – yup literary tattoos. For more information check them out on facebook.

Destination Dix ~ Saturday
The City of Raleigh is hosting a festival this weekend in the Dorothea Dix Park. Festivities will include live music, food trucks, and a beer garden. There will also be plenty for the kids to enjoy including a ferris wheel,  ethered hot air balloon rides, kids crafts and inflatables, a vision wall, lawn games and a Touch-a-Truck area. Shuttles to the festival are provided. You can get all the details here.

Big Lebowski at NCMA ~ Saturday
The North Carolina Museum of Art celebrates the Dude, the laziest man in L.A. County. The movie plays outside at 9pm. There will be a food truck roundup with 9 local trucks, games and prizes for costumes. The fun begins at 6:30pm. Tickets are $6. Details here.

Durham Bull Moon Ride ~ Saturday
A family-friendly, evening simultaneous 5K run and 12-mile bike run starting and ending with music, food, and entertainent at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park all to support Duham Habitat! A fun way to explore Durham! Ride is 7pm this Saturday. You can register here.


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Weekend Picks: July 8th-10th


“Bark for Beagles” is Sunday, July 10th at Trophy Brewing  
(Photo courtesy Triangle Beagle Rescue of NC)

This weekend is going to be a hot one, but that shouldn’t stop you from getting outside and exploring. Here are my top picks for things to check out. Stay cool!

Warehouse Blues Series in Durham ~ Friday
Friday, July 8 kicks off the 13th annual Warehouse Blues Series at Durham Central Park with live Blues from Amythyst Kiah & Her Chest of Glass , local food trucks, and dancing. This year’s lineup highlights Women of the Blues. Featured artist this week is Amythyst Kiah & Her Chest of Glass. Music from 5:30-7:30. FREE

Funny Girl Farm Tour and Farmstand  ~ Saturday
Saturday is farm day at Funny Girl Farm in Durham. Visit their farmstand for fresh summer produce and delicious local product including fresh baked pie by the slice from East Durham Pie Company. Farm tours at 10am and 1pm including our veggies, chickens and friendly farm dogs. Dogs are welcome at the farmstand, but please no pups on the farm tours. FREE

Bark for Beagles at Trophy Brewing ~ Sunday
This Sunday 2-6pm Triangle Beagle Rescue of NC is raising funds for their beagles at Trophy Brewing & Taproom. During the event you can enjoy great beer, hang out with the adorable beagles, get your photo taken at a photo booth, and take home some tasty dog treats made from Trophy’s spent grain. This event is open to people and pups of all ages, so be sure to bring your best pal along for the fun. We encourage all interested in adopting to come and meet a lifelong friend of their own. Beer & food for purchase. Donations welcome!


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Weekend Picks: July 1-4th


If you are sticking around the Triangle this holiday weekend there will be plenty for you to enjoy. If you are looking for a place to see fireworks this weekend check out my recent post here. Otherwise here are my top picks this weekend. Have a happy and safe 4th of July!

First Friday – Art, Music, Markets ~ Friday
Tonight is “First Friday” in downtown Raleigh. Visit the local art galleries and studios and hit up the Morning Times Market on Hargett Street. There will also be live music at Brew Coffee and the Two Roosters Ice Cream truck at Yellowdog Bread.

Festival for the Eno ~ Saturday & Monday
The Eno River Festival features over 65 performers on 4 stages, with a juried craft show with 8o vendors, and backyard chickens and bees, and food trucks. This is a ticketed event. For more details and purchase tickets vist their website here.

Block Party at Nickelpoint & Neuse River Brewery ~Sunday
Nuese River & Nickelpoint Brewing are throwing their First Annual Independence Block Party this Sunday from 2-10pm. They will close of the street and have live music all day, 4 food trucks (Cockadoodlemoo Truck, Flirting With Fire Mobile Wood Fired Pizza,Cousins Maine Lobster, Baozi), two dessert trucks ( Jay’s Italian Ice, Two Roosters Ice Cream), local vendors, and more!

More Weekend Exploring Ideas – Sunflowers & Farmers’ Markets
If you are looking to do some exploring I suggest paying a visit to the Raleigh sunflower fields located near the Wake / Johnston County Boarder. You can get a preview and directions from my recent post about the sunflowers here. The flowers usually begin to wilt by mid July so make sure you get out there soon!

The Durham Farmers Market runs weekly from 8am-12pm at Durham Central Park. This is by far my favorite market in the Triangle. There are lots of great local farmers, local artisans, and Hunt Street transforms into a mini food truck rodeo with 5-6 trucks serving breakfast and lunch items. A must visit with any out of town guests this holiday weekend.


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Triangle Fourth of July Fireworks 2016


Knightdale Independence Day Celebration ~ Monday July 4th
(Photo courtesy Town of Knightdale)

Below is my annual list of places to see Fourth of July Fireworks around the Triangle this year. Please note the actual date for each event as some towns celebrate before/after the fourth of July. There is also a link next to each event listed that will take you to the event website for additional information about parking.

My top pick this year is the Knightdale 4th of July Celebration scheduled for Monday, July 4th in Knightdale Station Park. They have beautiful spacious venue, a HUGE fireworks show, and over 30 food trucks scheduled. You can view parking info and the full schedule of the Knightdale event here.

Fireworks in the Triangle 2016 (in alphabetical order)

A.E Finley YMCA (North Raleigh) Info
A.E Finley YMCA Finley Freedom Festival Sunday, June 26th 6:30-9pm.A free, family-centered Independence Day celebration! Bring your chairs and picnic or purchase foods here. Music, games, face painting, food vendors, balloons and of course a fireworks show at dusk.

Brier Creek (Raleigh) Info
Brier Creek is holding a “Show us your Stripes” Block Party on July 4th from 5-7pm. Set up your lawn chair earlyat the Brier Creek Commons (Clock Tower Plaza between Brasa and Blo).There will be games, bounce houses, prizes, face painting, FREE balloons. Fireworks after dusk.

Cary Info
Celebrate at Koka Booth Ampitheatre 3-10pm July 4 with music & fireworks. There will be kids activities, a ferris wheel, a watermelon eating contest and more. Music by the NC Symphony capped off with an incredibly spectacular fireworks display. Tarps, blankets & chairs allowed within venue gates; staking and tents are not permitted. Concert is FREE and open to the public.

Chapel Hill Kenan Stadium Info
Fireworks at Kenan Stadium. The gates open at 7 PM July 4th. Family friendly activities including live music by Transit Vocal band and watermelon eating contest. Fireworks begin at 9:30pm.

The Clayton Parks & Recreation is hosting their annual July 4th Celebration on Monday, July 4th at the Municipal Park (325 McCullers Drive). Activities begin at 4pm with family field events, Free Ice Cream and Watermelon, a Cornhole Tournament and live music. Get sprayed down by the Clayton Fire Department (a kid favorite!).Fireworks at dusk. New this year, the live music, inflatables and rides will run another half hour after the show.

Durham Info
Durham Bulls Baseball game on July 4th will be followed by their annual Independence Day Fireworks Extravaganza. Tickets are required for the game, but gates will open for general admission at the end of the 7th inning. The dynamic fireworks show will begin immediately following the game.

Franklin County Info
Fourth of July Celebration at Louisburg High School Monday July 4th. Games, inflatables, music, food, and fireworks. Free admission.

Fuquay Varina Info
Music, kid’s games and fireworks at Fuquay Varina’s South Park – 820 N. Main Street. Sunday July 3rd, gates open at 6 PM.

Garner Info
The town of Garner has their fireworks on Sunday, July 3rd at the beautiful Lake Benson Park (921 Buffalo Road). The NC Symphony & Soul Play Band will perform. There will be a kidzone and arts and crafts as well. Gates open at 5pm with fireworks launching after dark following the NC Symphony performance.

Holly SpringsInfo
Tuesday, July 5th Independence Day celebration at Jefferson L. Snugg Farm at Bass Lake Park 5-9:30pm. Musical entertainment, Food vendors, Inflatables and games, Fireworks, Face Painting and Other Games, Cornhole Tournament. The fireworks show is slated to begin at 9:15 p.m.

This is Knightdale’s Third Annual July 4th Celebration at Knightdale Station Park. Featuring fireworks, family activities, food trucks and music from The Embers. The event will begin at 5pm and conclude with the fireworks at 9:15pm. Make sure you come hungry – this event has a great food truck lineup with over 30 local food trucks! Festival map and schedule of events.

Kick off your Independence Day celebration with a fireworks display in Morrisville Community Park Sunday, July 3rd. Bring your blankets, chairs and snacks to enjoy the spectacular show. Music and activities will begin at 6:00pm; the Fireworks display will begin at dark, approximately 9:30pm.

Family Music Festival and Fireworks on Monday, July 4th at the Mebane Arts & Community Center. Music with Beach & Top 40 favorites beginning at 7:00pm until 9:30pm with fireworks following at 9:40. Bring your own seating to this fun-filled family event.

Raleigh Info
All day celebration Monday, July 4th noon-11pm along Fayetteville Street with two music stages, aerialists, street performers, Kings BMX Bike Stunts, Gouge Wrestling, contests, Beer Garden and more! FREE show at Red Hat Amphitheater and Fireworks at 9:30! Event map and full schedule.

Rolesville will celebrate with a parade on Monday, July 4th at 4:30PM followed by live music, great food, games, face painters, magicians, fireworks and more. Free admission but donations are greatly appreciated and will be accepted at the gates!

Wake Forest Info
Fireworks Spectacular on Sunday, July 3, at Wake Forest High School, 420 W. Stadium Drive. Gates open at 5:30. Beach music by Band of Oaz at 6:30. Admission $5. Children under 6 free. Fireworks at dusk (typically between 8:30-9pm).

Zebulon Info
The Carolina Mudcats will hold fireworks displays on Friday July 1st, Saturday July 2nd, Sunday July 3rd, and Monday July 4th at Five County Stadium. Gates will open at 6 p.m. each night for the 7:15 p.m. games, with fireworks and patriotic music to follow the games’ conclusion.


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Voting Open for WRAL Out & About Voters’ Choice Awards

Buffalo Blitz2

American Meltdown’s “Buffalo Blitz”

Voting for the WRAL Out and About 2016 Voters’ Choice Awards is open until July 10, 2016. This is your chance to vote for your favorites in categories ranging from food, nightlife and lifestyle. I always enjoy voting my favorite for categories like best coffee shop, favorite brewery, and food truck. Of course it is really hard to pick my favorites. Among this year’s five finalist in the coffee shop category I have to give Jubala the edge with the addition of their new location on Hillsborough Street. Big Boss remains my favorite brewery because of their great beer and weekly Tuesday night run club. It was a close one for food trucks, but American Meltdown remains a top pick for me. I love their buffalo chicken melt called the “Buffalo Blitz” (pictured above).

There are many other categories to vote for as well. You can view all the nominees for each category and vote for your favorites using this online ballot. Voting ends July 10th with winners to be announced in August.

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