Raleigh, N.C. — Martina McBride, Mardi Gras parties, elegant dinners, live music, beer releases and comedy shows all await you this week -- and the weekend isn't even here yet.
The Cooking for a Classic dinner series continues tonight, Tuesday and Wednesday at 1705 Prime in Raleigh. $50 tickets include six plated courses and six beverages by that night's two competing chefs, and all proceeds go to charity.
Dance Gavin Dance will perform at the Blue Note Grill in Durham at 7 p.m.
Chefs at The Berkley Cafe in Raleigh will host a Mardi Gras dinner tonight and on Fat Tuesday. Creole and Cajun dishes will be served both nights from 6 to 9 p.m.
You can hear jazz music from the 20s and 30s tonight at Neptune's in downtown Raleigh.
Mardi Gras is here! We've listed some of our top picks below, but you can check out our full list of events if you can't find what you are looking for.
Durham's Mardi Gras celebration starts at 7 p.m. with a parade and entertainment at popular bars and venues. The event is free.
Il Palio will recognize the day with a Celebration of Carnevale that will encompass all of the flavors and festivities of Fat Tuesday in divine Italian fashion. The night will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception followed by a multi-course menu infused with regional Italian flavors.
Oak & Dagger will also host a party with beer and food specials.
Want to get out of the house but not spend a lot? Try team trivia at the The Pinhook in Durham or Open Mic Nights at Deep South and Goodnight's Comedy Club.
See Ladysmith Black Mambazo, a South African male choral group founded in the early 1960s, tonight at the Carolina Theatre of Durham.
Comedians Adam Savage and Michael Stevens will perform at DPAC at 7:30 p.m. as part of their Brain Candy Live! tour.
Jesca Hoop will perform at 8 p.m. at Cat's Cradle. Tickets are $15.
The Eyes Up Here group featuring all-female comedians will perform at Neptune's at 8:30 p.m.
Try Lonerider's Sweet Josie beer, brewed with raspberries, tonight for Specialty Keg Night.
Urban Ministries of Durham will holds its Empty Bowls Benefit in downtown Durham at the Convention Center between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. The event brings together top-rated restaurant chefs and bowl artisans to offer attendees the chance to sample deliciously-crafted soups and select from hundreds of pottery and wooden bowls. Tickets start at $20.
At 7 p.m., join E.O. Wilson and panelists at the Carolina Theatre of Durham to hear about the Half-Earth project and saving the natural world from extinction. There will be a special guest performance by Paul Simon.
Seven-time "Female Vocalist of the Year" Martina McBride will perform at DPAC at 7:30 p.m.
KT Turnstall will perform at The ArtsCenter in Carrboro at 8 p.m.
Watch bands from local high schools perform and compete at Battle of the Bands at Cat's Cradle. Tickets are $10.
Enjoy the Longleaf Film Festival, which features shorts selected from major U.S. and international film festivals, alongside craft beer, live music, shopping and more at the North Carolina Museum of History at 6:30 pm. Tickets are $13.
The Marshall Tucker Band will perform at The Ritz in Raleigh at 8 p.m.
Get more picks for this month on our best bets calendar, and check back on Thursday for our official picks for the weekend.