This weekend is packed with events celebrating many different cultures – from the world of insects at Bugfest at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences to artisans from around the country at Durham’s Centerfest to the entire wide world of cultures at the International Festival in downtown Raleigh. All events are packed full of activities for all ages to enjoy and learn more about the world we live in and enjoy its many wonders.
An annual celebration of all things creepy and crawly, Bugfest at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences in downtown Raleigh is a great adventure for all ages. Happening from 9am – 7pm on Saturday September20 the event features over 100 exhibits, crafts, games and activities. Completely free, expert entomologists will be on hand to talk more about the world of bugs and presentations of multiple different bands, movies, and other insect lovers will happen throughout the day. A full schedule is online and don’t forget to check out Café Insecta, a lesson in entomophagy – the practice of eating bugs – with food prepared by local businesses. At 5pm the action moves outside for the Evening Insectival, a street fair with live bands and performers.
Held in Durham’s Downtown district, Centerfest is the longest running outdoor juried arts festival in North Carolina, celebrating its 40th year in 2014. Free with a $5 suggested donation at the gate benefitting the Durham Arts Council, the event features over 140 juried visual arts representing 17 states (including some locals) – from clay to glass to painting to photography to printmaking to jewelry to many other types of art. Performances are scheduled both days and the event runs on Saturday Sept 20th from 10am – 6pm and Sunday Sept 21st from 11am – 5pm. Over 40 Durham area non-profit, government, and civic organizations will be present and there is a Creative Kids Zone with hands-on activities as well as locally-sourced foods and international cuisine available at the event.
The 29th annual International Festival comes back to the Convention Center in Raleigh this weekend – open Friday Sept 19th from 4:30 – 10pm, Saturday Sept 20th from 10am – 10pm, and Sunday Sept 21st from 11am – 7pm. The event is packed with activities, from traditional ethnic dances to live cooking demonstrations and a naturalization ceremony on Friday at 2pm, where 200 – 300 people become new citizens. Over 1,000 dancers and performers participate each year and vendors from cultural groups around the world are featured in an international bazaar where you can purchase authentic items like jewelry and clothing. The Sidewalk Cafes and Biergarten are also popular aspects, featuring culinary treat sand brews from many different countries. Day passes are $6-8, weekend passes are $19 and tickets can be purchased in advance online.