Raleigh, N.C. — It only happens once a month, but First Friday is a great way to see and experience downtown Raleigh. The next First Friday event this Friday - Jan. 2!
Events run from 6-9 p.m., unless otherwise noted, and involve tons of galleries, restaurants and other venues in downtown Raleigh.
All places participating in First Friday will have flags outside.
Our Best Bets for this month's First Friday:
Local Color Gallery will be holding a sneak preview of its exhibition from 6-9 p.m. The gallery, which is a co-op run by local women artists working in a variety of mediums, has just moved into the city's warehouse district. Their first exhibition in the new space runs from Jan. 2-31.
BREW Coffee Bar will have live music, art and drink specials from 6-9 p.m. Live music will be provided by River Glen and the featured artist of the month is Amaris Photography. Relay Foods, an online market for local, organic, and everyday groceries, will also be on hand sampling some local food items available on their website. The featured brewery of the month is Deep River Brewing of Clayton. BREW will be offering $1 off drafts of their Backcountry Black IPA and Twisted River Wit.
There are so many more First Friday events, we had to make a list of them all. Browse through the listings below:
Food and drink (All First Friday deals are 6-9 p.m. unless otherwise noted)
The Architect Bar - Featuring local artists, live music and drink specials
The Big Easy - Buy one Taste of Louisiana, get one free
Bolt Bistro & Bar - Chef-created $5 appetizer and select specialty $5 cocktails
Boylan Bridge Brewpub - $5 select appetizers during First Friday hours and $5 select cocktails
BREW Coffee Bar - See above.
buku - $15 wine flights featuring a different wine region of the world each month
Busy Bee Cafe - $3 craft tap
Cafe de los Muertos - Specials change each monthly
Caffe Luna - Free bottle of San Pellegrino with purchase of two entrees
Capital Club 16 - Half price select appetizers from 5-7 p.m.
Centro - $2 off all tequila flights
Crema on Fayetteville - Free cone with purchase of ice cream
Cupcake Shoppe - Buy one get one
Dickey's Barbecue Pit - Free dessert with purchase of barbecue meat plate and drink or one free Kid's Meal (12 and under) per paid adult meal of equal or greater value
Donato's Pizza - $5 off a second large pizza (coupon code #050)
Dos Taquitos Xoco - Free queso dip with the purchase of an entree and kids eat free if they dress like Frida Kahlo
Five Star - $5 appetizers and $5 glasses of wine
Hibernian - Half off Irish fare on regular menu
Irregardless Cafe - Half price bottles of Irregardless' fine house wine
Jose and Sons - Half-price select appetizers from 5-7 p.m. and live music from 7-10 p.m.
Kimbap - $5 dumplings special, seasonal menu features, exhibiting work from local artists and half price wine bottles (open 5:30-10 p.m.)
The Morning Times - Drink specials and an outdoor art market featuring live entertainment
Mo's Diner - Half price wine by the bottle and nightly features
North Street Beer Station - Homebrew and artist features
The Oxford - Whiskey flights, artist feature from 6-9 p.m. and music feature from 10 a.m.-2 a.m.
Paddy O'Beers - Special selection of $4 crafts and drafts
Pogo at Marbles Kids Museum/IMAX - Buy one, get one free Pogo Bites and $3 draft beer
The Pour House - Free admission or 20% off admission (when applicable) with mention of First Friday
The Remedy Diner - $5 glasses of house wine
The Rockford - Special to be announced
Rum Runners - Free admission until 11 p.m., half off all shots, $3 beer special and $6 double Long Islands
Shish Kabob - Free hummus sampler and toasted pita with any gyro sandwich purchase
Solas - Live music and three-course prix fixe menu for $30
Sono - $2 edamame from 5-7 p.m. and a $7 feature cocktail
Square Rabbit - Buy one dessert, get one of equal or lesser value for free
The Station at Person Street - Specials to be announced
Tir na nOg Irish Pub - $1.25 off all craft bottles, $4.50 Fireball shots, and half off appetizers from 4-6 p.m.
Tuscan Blu - 10 percent off any wine purchase
Woody's at City Market - Half price appetizers and wings from 4:30-6:30 p.m.; 20 percent off appetizers from 6:30-9:30 p.m.; $2.50 PBR Tallboys; tequila shot specials and $5 Jagerbombs (open until 2 a.m.)
Zinda - Free appetizer with purchase of two entrees, artist features
Other venues (All First Friday times are 6-9 p.m. unless otherwise noted)
Alter Ego Hair & Nails, 119 E Hargett St., Suite 200
What? Hair and nail salon and art venue in a beautiful loft
Special: Monthly art exhibits and periodic music, dance performances, special events and product or tool specials
Atomic Salon, 905 W Morgan St. (Hours 7-10 p.m.)
What? The Triangle’s only rock-n-roll vintage hair salon
Special: Art exhibits on First Fridays
Capitol Smoke, 215 W Martin St.
What? Glass art from national and local artists, wall art, and the finest imported cigars
Special: 10 percent off wall art and 25 percent off cigars
City Gallery at Vintage Church, 117 S West St.
What? Vintage Church's gallery hosts art exhibitions, serves artists, and loves Raleigh
City Market, 200 E Martin St.
What? Houses multiple First Friday venues
Special: Live music from March-November
Clark Patterson Lee, 415 Hillsborough St., Suite 101 (Hours 6-9 p.m.)
What? Full-service architecture, engineering, interior design, master plans and art gallery
Special: Free architectural advice during First Fridays
City of Raleigh Museum, 220 Fayetteville St.
What? City history museum featuring receptions and rotating art exhibits
Contemporary Art Museum, 409 W Martin St.
Special: First Friday admission is free. Exhibitions on view, make and take art, DJs, food trucks, and more.
Deco Raleigh, 19 W Hargett St., Suite 108
What? A collection of unique and local decorative items
Special: Refreshments, entertainment and artist meet-and-greet
Downtown Dental, 205 Fayetteville St., Suite 100
What? Dental office hosting art exhibits and receptions with light hors d'oeuvres
Feelgoodz, 206 S Wilmington St.
What? Natural, comfortable, and ethical footwear
Special: Changes monthly
Furbish Studio, 312 W Johnson St.
What? A daring mix for you and your home
Special: 10 percent off entire purchase
HagerSmith Design, 300 S Dawson St.
What? Architecture, landscape architecture, interior design, historic preservation and art gallery
High Cotton, 19 W Hargett St.
What? 100 percent cotton bow ties and apparel for gentlemen, handmade in North Carolina
Special: Free gift with purchase
HQ Raleigh, 310 S Harrington St.
What? Shared work space for entrepreneurs featuring work by CAM and Artspace
Klish and Eldreth, PLLC, 304 Glenwood Ave.
What? Intellectual property boutique law firm featuring photography from local artists
LGBT Center of Raleigh, 324 S Harrington St.
What? A safe and welcoming resource center for the LGBT community and friends featuring monthly art exhibits
Lisa Stewart Designs, 323 Blake St.
What: Handcrafted leather, fine art and gifts made in Raleigh
Special: Free gift with purchase of $75 or more
Makena Skin Care, 304 Glenwood Ave. Suite 7
What? A skin care studio featuring local artists on a rotating basis
Special: Book a facial on First Friday and receive $10 off
Marbles Kid Museum (Museum open until 7 p.m.)
Special: Create | Innovate every First Friday night at Marbles as part of downtown Raleigh’s monthly art celebration ($5 per person, members play free)
Moon and Lola, 208 S Wilmington St.
What? Upscale jewelry and accessory boutique
Special: 15 percent off merchandise storewide
The Morning Times, 10 E Hargett St. (Hours 6-11 p.m.)
What? Coffeehouse and gallery serving single origin coffees, house-baked pastries, and sandwiches
Special: Drink specials and an outdoor art market featuring live entertainment
Nora and Nicky's Designer Resale, 19 W Hargett St., Suite 104
What? Luxury and designer consignment specializing in high-end labels
Special: 15 percent off any single item
Nuvonivo, 111 E Hargett St.
What? Trendy fashion for babies and kids
Special: Children's fashion sale
Oak City Coffee Roastery, 615 W Hargett St.
What? An independent coffee shop in downtown Raleigh
Special: $2 off select coffees
Oak City Cycling Project, 212 E Franklin St.
What? Independent bike shop selling new and used steel bike frames and fun
Special: 10 percent off t-shirts and free high fives
Ornamentea, 509 N West St.
What? Fine beads and jewelry making supplies
Special: Free jewelry project from 6-8 p.m.
The Pour House Music Hall, 224 S Blount St.
What? Raleigh's premier live music venue presenting local and international bands nightly
Special: Free admission or 20 percent off admission (when applicable) with mention of First Friday
Raleigh Television Network, 310 W Martin St. (Hours 6-8 p.m.)
What? The city’s digital television network center
Special: Open access to the RTN studio
Raleigh Wine Shop, 126 Glenwood Ave.
What? Fine wine and provisions
Special: 10 percent off of bottle purchases from the WineStation and/or tasting wines to drink on-site or to go
Stitch & Holly Aiken Bags, 20 E Hargett St.
What? Retail showroom of Raleigh handbag designer Holly Aiken
Special: 10 percent off all bags
Triangle Downtowner Magazine, 402 Glenwood Ave.
What? The Triangle's most popular magazine
Special: Enjoy local art, music and drinks
Trinity Gallery, 549 N Blount St.
What? Art in the city for the city, featuring local artists and musicians
VanNess & Fellows Tattoo Boutique and Gallery, 226 E Martin St.
What? A one-of-a-kind art gallery, boutique and custom tattoo studio
Special: 10 percent off all steam punk art
Videri Chocolate Factory, 327 W Davie St., Suite 100
What? Freshly-made chocolate and confections
Special: 10 percent off all chocolate products
The Wine Feed, 602 Glenwood Ave.
What? Wine oasis in a beer town.
Special: 20 percent off wine on tap at our wine bar
Wine and Design, 806 N. West St.
What? Drink and paint
Special: 10 percent off anything purchased during First Friday hours
Art on display
There are also several art exhibits happening throughout downtown. The Downtown Raleigh Alliance has a list of the exhibits and a complete rundown of the galleries and museums participating in First Friday.
311 West Martin Street Gallery & Studios, 311 W Martin St.
What? Gallery featuring 20 working artists and regional artist exhibits monthly
Adam Cave Fine Art, 115 1/2 E Hargett St., Second Floor
What? Upstairs gallery featuring original fine art by over 25 artists
Ann Marie Print Art and Blue Iris Salon, 711 N Person St.
What? Mixed medium original stencil art and unique wax works
Anthony Ulinski, 24 Commerce Pl.
What? Fine art and furniture
ANVIL, 715 N Person St.
What? Premier destination for fine art jewelry, metalwork, locally-made goods, in-house jewelry repair and custom work
Artspace, 201 E Davie St. (Open until 10 p.m.)
What? Visual art center with artist studios, exhibits and educational programs
Blake Street Shops & Studios, 300 Blake St. (Hours 6-10 p.m.)
What? Art galleries, handmade jewelry, body care, leather goods and gifts
BLAM Studios, 301-1 Kinsey St.
What? Working studio environment featuring paintings, mixed media, digital art, B&W photography, a print maker, 3D art, jewelry and poetry
Brushstroke Studio and Gallery, 520 N. West St.
What? Gallery and studio featuring works by local artists and photographers.
The Carter Building, 12-22 Glenwood Ave. (Hours 6:30-10 p.m.)
What? A collection of art studios, retailers, and service providers
Designbox, 307 W Martin St. (Open until 10 p.m.)
What? Gallery and shop featuring art, design and unique gifts
The Fish Market Student Gallery, 133 Fayetteville St., Alexander Building basement (Hours 7-11 p.m. Open select months.)
What? Student gallery specializing in work by NC State College of Design students
Flanders Gallery, 302 S West St.
What? Contemporary work by established and emerging artists
Gallery C, 540 N Blount St.
What? Contemporary and historic NC artwork and fine picture framing services
Lee Hansley Gallery, 225 Glenwood Ave. (Open until 10 p.m.)
What? American contemporary art with an emphasis on NC’s art history
Litmus Gallery & Studios, 312 W Cabarrus St.
What? Features local artists and open studios for touring
Local Color Gallery, 22 Glenwood Ave.
What? Co-op of women artists—fine art, glass, functional pottery, sculpture, and jewelry
The Mahler Fine Art, 228 Fayetteville St.
What? A full-service fine art gallery
NC Museum of Natural Sciences Store and Nature Art Gallery, 11 W Jones St.
What? Nature inspired gifts along with NC artwork, pottery, and jewelry
Nicole's Studio and Art Gallery, 719 N Person St. (Hours 6-8:30 p.m.)
What? Fine art, art workshops, glass art, jewelry, and custom framing
Studio R.E.D., 20 Glenwood Ave.
What? Working artist studio and gallery
Tipping Paint Gallery, 311 W Martin St.
What? Art gallery and artist studio—contemporary and traditional art
United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, 410 Glenwood Ave.
What? New location in Glenwood South exhibiting art curated by the Visual Art Exchange
Visual Art Exchange, 309 W Martin St.
What? Creativity incubator and gallery featuring emerging artists and a retail shop