September is a fantastically busy month and this weekend is no exception – with activities for all ages and interests including SPARKcon, Raleigh’s annual festival of creativity; the excellent Paperhand Puppet Intervention show at the NC Museum of Art, an enchanted spectacle for all ages; and, for the first time, the annual Farm Aid concert benefitting family farmers.
Four days of creative explosion from Sept 11 – 14, SPARKcon has a multitude of events focusing on many different aspects of creativity – art, music, comedy, film, fashion, geek, circus, dance, theatre, poetry, etc. Download the app or search for events that suite your particular interest on the website. (Honestly the app is much easier to navigate.) Most of the events are free and there are kid-friendly activities as well. The majority of the activities happen in downtown Raleigh, including the highly anticipated street painting and Wear What You Are fashion show. A great opportunity to see and hear the abundance of creative talent all over the Triangle!
Paperhand is an award-winning troupe using masks, giant puppets, stilts, painted cardboard, and shadows in combination with live music to tell stories. Intending to illuminate myth and make the world a better place, this is their 15th annual spectacle for all ages and is called The Painted Bird. It will explore the realms of imagination and creation through color – including a magical world full of animals. Held at the NC Museum of Art on Friday September 12, the show is $17 for non-members, $12 for members, $8.50 for Youth 7-18, and free for children 6 and under. There is pre-show music by Steph Stewart & the Boyfriends at 6:20 with the pageant starting at 7pm.
For over 28 years, Farm Aid has been around to provide support and services to farm families in crisis. This year, their annual benefit concert is being held on Saturday September 13th at the Walnut Creek Amphitheatre. The lineup features Willie Nelson & Family, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds, Jack White and more. A limited amount of tickets are available from $49 to $175. And if you can’t attend in person, you can watch the event live on TV and via their webcast. To date the Farm Aid concert benefit series has raised more than $45 million to help family farmers thrive all over the country and inspired millions to learn more about the Good Food movement. The event also has a Homegrown Village featuring many local companies and organizations supporting the farming industry in NC.