School is back in session and weekends in September are meant for some family fun or a grown-up outing or two. Our Raleigh Moms Blog team is giving families the inside scoop to what’s happening around town. From festivals to movies under the stars, to a BugFest to Tacos & Taps our Raleigh Moms Guide to September has got you covered!
**Make sure to bookmark this page as we will be adding more events throughout the month.**
Guide to Family Fun in and around Raleigh in September
Events are subject to change. Be sure to click on the event link to verify date and time.
September 1st. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Movie starts at 8:30 p.m. Museum Park Theatre at N.C. Museum of Art, Raleigh
Kick off your September at this outdoor movie fiesta with lively music, face-painting, family-friendly art-making projects, Day of the Dead food offering traditions, food trucks, performances and the popular Disney movie Coco (PG). Cost: $8 for members, $10 for non-members. Free for kids 6 years and under.
September 1st – 2nd, Take place along Fayetteville Street, from Martin Street through City Plaza, Downtown Raleigh
This free annual festival is a celebration of African-American culture and traditions with art, live music, performers, food vendors and shopping in the heart of downtown Raleigh. In addition, families will enjoy the Family Village where they’ll find a Make & Take area, Storyhour, dance troupe performances, drum circles, puppeteers, choirs, fitness demonstrations and much more. Learn more here.
September 3rd. 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Harris Lake County Park, New Hill
Take an interactive hike with your family and a park staff member to observe the natural world while discovering new things on the trail. For all ages. Cost: $1 per person. Registration required.
September 5th. 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. The Big Field at Dorothea Dix Park, Raleigh
Calling all Junior Paleontologists! Come touch and see real dinosaur fossils and use special tools to break apart dinosaur eggs and uncover “ancient” treasures. For ages 2 -6 years with an adult. Register kids in advance. Adults do not have to register.
September 7th – 9th. Jim Graham Building – N.C. State Fairgrounds, Raleigh
The 37th annual Greek Festival is back for families to enjoy. See traditional Greek folk dance performances, listen to live Greek music, and enjoy handmade authentic Greek recipes prepared by the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church Family. Learn more here. Cost: $3 for General Admission. Kids 13 years and under are free. $2 for ages 13-18 years and Seniors. One day free admission if you print your own ticket.
September 7th – 9th. Preshow music begins at 6:20 p.m. Show starts at 7:00 p.m. Joseph M. Bryan, Jr. Theatre in the Museum Park, N.C. Museum of Art, Raleigh
Giant puppets, stilt walkers, live music, shadow puppets all hit the stage to for this breathtaking performance. Visit their website to learn more. FYI: This performance is suitable for all ages but does carry a strong environmental message. Cost: $15 for members, $17 for non-members, $8.50 for youth ages 7-18 years. Children 6 and under are free.
September 8th. 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh
It’s time to take the stage! Big kids and little ones (even grownups!) can jump on the mic and share their favorite song, poetry or even perform their best dance. This special event is all to celebrate Music Month at Marbles! Don’t forget to dance on over to the IMAX to view the new family-friendly film, America’s Musical Journey 3D.
September 8th. 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary
Calling all foodies! This festival is showcasing the Coast’s Best Tacos and Mexican Food along with live music, contests, piñata playground, over 80 craft beers, boutique vendors, lawn activities and a few more surprises. Cost: $39-$59 in advance. Kids 12 and under are free. (There’s even a special VIP Designated Driver Ticket for $39 only available onsite.) Learn more here.
September 8th. 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Wake Forest Renaissance Centre, Wake Forest
Celebrate the Mid-Autumn Moon festival or Tet Trung Thu, as it is known in Vietnam with music, dance, stories, arts and crafts and food. The evening will end with a children’s lantern promenade. Cost: $8 for adults. $6 for children 12 years and under. Seniors are free.
September 8th. Noon – 6:00 p.m. Sugg Farm Park, Holly Springs
If you love local craft beer then this annual festival is for you! Over 70 craft breweries from across North Carolina and some beyond will be ready for visitors to sample and enjoy. Pair your favorite craft beers with your favorite food trucks during Beericana. Live bands will be playing, too. Visit their website to purchase tickets in advance.
Ends September 9th…last day to catch this exhibit! N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh
Put your brain to the test during this interactive hands-on exhibit for all ages. Families will enjoy problem-solving through music mazes, brain-teaser table, 3-D puzzles, black-light Cosmic Games and more. Cost: $5 per person. Members get in free.
September 13th – 16th. City Plaza, Downtown Raleigh (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Visit their website for new event dates.)
A festival that celebrates all things creative “for the community by the community“! Four days of artistry, vendor shopping, kids activities, performances, design, fashion, food, literature, tech and much more. Visit their website and start making plans.
September 13th – 14th. 10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh (Cancelled due to Hurricane Florence.)
Red, green or yellow…apple trees bring the yummiest of treats! Enjoy this seasonal program in the garden for preschool-aged (3-5 years) children. Explore all things “apple” with self-guided hands-on activities, creative art projects, stories and garden walks. Cost: $5 per child for Arboretum family members, $7 per child for non-members. Register in advance. A parent or adult must accompany.
September 15th. 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Visit their website for new event dates.)
Learn about the fascinating world of creepy critters at this annual bug festival. During BugFest enjoy over 100 entertaining exhibits, interact with entomologists and other scientists, participate in hands-on crafts, games and activities, sample buggy dishes, and spend an evening with live music, bug stands and a street carnival to close up the day. Visit their website to learn more. This is a FREE event.
September 15th. 3:00 p.m. – Midnight, Downtown Apex (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Visit their website for new event dates.)
Live music is coming back to the heart of downtown Apex during this annual festival with four stages, 10 bands, food trucks, and craft beer & wine. Admission Wristbands ranges from $15 – $35. See here. This tends to be an adult-focused event but music lovers of all ages are welcome. Strollers are not permitted.
September 15th. Exposition Center – N.C. State Fairgrounds, Raleigh (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Rescheduled for November 10th. )
All ages will enjoy celebrating Korean culture with extravagant performances ranging from traditional Korean dance, K-Pop and martial arts performances and more. Enjoy unique and delicious Korean dishes and vendor shopping, too. Cost: $10 for Adults, Free for ages 13 years and under.
September 16th. 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Garner Performing Arts, Garner (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Rescheduled for September 30th.)
Experience traditional and contemporary Latino cultures presented by the Town of Garner with food, live music, children’s craft booths, face painting, vendor shopping and a piñata giveaway. Free fun and educational afternoon for families!
September 16th. 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh (Cancelled due to Hurricane Florence.)
Go back in time and learn how farmers harvested crops by threshing wheat by hand and make a craft to take home. This program is geared toward all ages and is free. No registration required.
September 16th. 12:00 p.m. – 4:30 pm. Nasher Museum of Art, Durham (Cancelled due to Hurricane Florence.)
A Gallery Hunt with the family, create mini kid-friendly versions of art on display, enjoy live music and dance exploring the African diaspora and more. Don’t miss Nasher’s major exhibition: People Get Ready: Building a Contemporary Collection.
September 16th. Showtime: 3:00 p.m. RLT’s Louise “Scottie” Stephenson Amphitheatre, Raleigh (Postponed due to Hurricane Florence. Rescheduled for September 23rd.)
An outdoor family-friendly classical music-series featuring music from your favorite movies from the 1980’s to today. Cost: $20 for adults, $15 for Students/Seniors. Visit here to mark your calendar for the next pop-up concerts.
September 21st. 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh
Mark the change of the season by learning all there is to know about the equinox. Celebrate this special time of year with activities at the park’s Finley Center Exhibit Hall and learn about seasonal folklore and related historical traditions. FREE event. No registration required.
September 22nd. 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary
This annual festival features nearly 100 cultural exhibits, Dragon Boat races, stage performances, health screenings, food vendors throughout Koka Booth. Cost: Kids 12 and under are free. $5 in advance for 13 years and over. $8 day of the event for 13 years and over. Visit their website to learn more.
September 22nd. 10:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. N.C. Museum of History, Raleigh
Ahoy mateys, don’t miss this festival! 2018 marks 300 years since Blackbear roamed the Carolina coast. Learn more about the history of pirates in North Carolina with a day filled with pirate activities. Swashbuckling games, sword fights, Captain Blackbeard sightings, a costume contest, live music, local Food Trucks, pirate crafts and much more.
September 22nd. Gates open at 1:30. Show starts at 2:15pm. RLT’s Louise “Scottie” Stephenson Amphitheatre, Raleigh
Live music in the garden is back for all ages so grab your lawn chairs and picnic blankets. Check out the lineup here. This annual garden event also brings in local food trucks and vendors. Cost: $10 in advance ($15 day of event). $25 advance ticket + t-shirt. $65 VIP ticket. Children under 5 years are free.
September 23rd. 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Bond Park, Cary
The Town of Cary is kicking off TACO week with an afternoon of hikes, crafts, fishing and free private boat launches along with a full menu of more outdoor activities. Also, enjoy half-priced pedal boat rentals for your family. This is a free event.
September 23rd. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Movie starts at 7:30 p.m. Flower Field at Dorothea Dix Park, Raleigh
Take part in a movie under the moon with friends and family from the City of Raleigh. Enjoy the hit feature Jurassic Park (PG-13) along with yummy eats from your favorite food trucks. RSVP in advance.
September 23rd. Fayetteville Street, Downtown Raleigh
Celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month for the 5th year in a row in Downtown Raleigh. Enjoy cultural performances, live music, food vendors, arts & crafts vendors and more. Stay tuned to their website as they update features. (Remember National Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15th – October 15th.)
September 24th – 30th. JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh
TACO (Take A Child Outside) week is a national program helping families explore and appreciate and understand the environment around us. Celebrate TACO week with creative programming in the garden ranging from Seed Explosion, Fairies in the Garden, Garden Buds, Arboretum Favorites Bingo, and a Yurt Open House. Cost: $5 per child for Arboretum family members, $7 per child for non-members. Register in advance.
September 25th. 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Blue Jay County Park, Raleigh
Parents or Grandparents, come bring the kiddos out for free play at the park. Park education staff will have self-guided activities on site in which kids can play and get creative! Activities are geared for ages 3 – 7 years old with a parent or guardian. This is a free event. No registration required.
September 25th. 5:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. Lake Lynn Community Center, Raleigh
Free family fun celebrating TACO week with an evening of outdoor lawn activities, a scavenger hunt, and a taco food truck. Bring the family and enjoy an outdoor outing.
September 27th. State Farmers Market, Raleigh
Apple-lovers this is the place to be! This special apple day with features North Carolina apples, apple desserts and more.
September 25th – 29th. Downtown Raleigh
Enjoy the largest week-long celebration of integrated bluegrass music. This annual festival brings together new and old fans of bluegrass music. This is a ticketed event with performances throughout downtown Raleigh. Visit their website to learn more.
September 28th. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Movie starts at 8:30 p.m. Museum Park Theatre at N.C. Museum of Art, Raleigh
Big-screen magic under the stars at NCMA brings families together! Catch this popular film, Black Panther (PG-13), for the first or third time along with featured activities paying homage to the beautiful land of Wakanda. Enjoy special music, art-making activities, food trucks and don’t forget to stop into NCMA’s redesigned African Art gallery that will be open until 9:00 p.m. Cost: $8 for members, $10 for non-members. Free for kids 6 years and under.
September 29th. 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Historic Oak View County Park, Raleigh
Spend a fall day with your favorite blankets and chairs to listen to amazing tales in the park presented by nationally celebrated storytellers. Families can also enjoy songs on the wagon shuttle and hands-on learning experiences in the activity tents. Food vendors will also be on site.
September 30th. Noon. Museum Park & West Building, N.C. Museum of Art, Raleigh
Discover and learn about agricultural celebrations around the globe (including the Jewish festival Sukkot), use natural materials for hands-on art activities, and listen to music and performances. Free event. Registration is required.
September 30th. 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Cary Senior Center, Cary
Join the Town of Cary to celebrate the culture and heritage of the Jewish religion and people through music, traditional Jewish & Kosher foods, Jewish/Israeli dancing and much more. This year the holiday focus is on the harvest festival called Sukkot. Learn more about this free family event here.
Did we miss anything? Share with us in the comments below!