It only happens once a month, but First Friday is a great way to see experience downtown Raleigh. The next First Friday event is February 1.
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 Bet for this month's First Friday:
Local illustrator Char Reed will be at Benelux Cafe discussing her work and enjoying the cafe's delicious drinks. Reed's pet caricatures are adorable and funny, and you can see more of her work on her blog.
There are so many things going on, we decided to compile a list of some of them:
Food and drink (All First Friday deals are 6-9 p.m. unless otherwise noted)
Babylon - $35 three-course prix fixe menu
Bia at Solas - Half price appetizer with purchase of entree
The Big Easy - Half price dessert with purchase of two entrees
Bolt Bistro & Bar - $5 select martinis and seasonal sangria, $8 flatbreads and sliders
Brewmasters Bar and Grill - Fire sale on select craft brewed beers (open until 2 a.m.)
buku - Flight of wines from different parts of the world for $15
Busy Bee Cafe - $2 local of craft beer draft line
Caffe Luna - Free bottle of San Pellegrino with purchase of two entrees
Capital Club 16 - Half price appetizers from 5-7 p.m.
Centro - $2 off tequila flights
Crema on Fayetteville - Free cone with purchase of ice cream
Cupcake Shoppe - Buy one get one half price
The Daily Planet Cafe - $3 pints and free live music
Deep South the Bar - $2.50 PBR cans, $5 Disco Lemonade
Dickey's Barbecue Pit - Free regular dessert ($2.75 value) with purchase of barbecue meat plate and drink or one free kid's meal (12 and under) per paid adult meal
Five Star - From 5:30-9 p.m., get $5 appetizers and $5 wine specials by the glass
Irregardless Cafe - Half price bottles of house wine.
Isaac Hunter's Oak City Tavern - $4 glasses of house wine, $4 select local drafts and new local artists featured monthly
Jibarra Modern Mexican - Half price bottles of premium Spanish and South American wines
Mo's Diner - Half price wine by the bottle with purchase of two entrees
PieBird - $3.50 draft beers
Posta Tuscan Grille - Half price appetizer with the purchase of two entrees
The Remedy Diner - $5 glasses of wine
Rum Runners - Free admission from 6-11 p.m., half off all shots, $3 beer special and $6 double Long Islands
Square Rabbit - Buy one dessert, get one of equal value for free
Stir Lounge and Nightclub - Exhibits, $5 select wine by the glass and $5 craft-made martinis
Tir na nOg Irish Pub - $3.75 microbrew bottles
Tuscan Blu - Free house salad with any pasta or main course
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.; $3.50 Jose Cuervo shots and $5 Jagerbombs (open until 2 a.m.)
Zely & Ritz - Three course prix fixe dinner for $25 per person
Zydeco - Dinner and drink specials and half off appetizers at the bar with purchase of a beverage
Other deals (All First Friday times are 6-10 p.m. unless otherwise noted)
Alter Ego Hair & Nails, 119 E. Hargett St., Suite 200
What? Salon that specializes in hair care and exhibits art
Artcraft, 406 Hillsborough St
What? Commercial art, large scale works, paintings, sculptures, photography, and more by co-op artists
Atomic Salon, 905 W. Morgan St. (Hours 7-10 p.m.)
What?: The Triangle’s only rock-n-roll vintage hair salon featuring art exhibits on First Fridays
Burning Coal Theatre Company, 224 Polk St
What?: Small professional theatre company with classic shows and modern plays
Special: $5 off your ticket price on First Friday shows with an advance reservation (shows begin at 7:30 p.m.)
Cardinal Club, 150 Fayetteville St., Suite 2800 (Hours 5:30 p.m. - 8 p.m.)
What? Local art on display and great views of downtown
Special: Complimentary hors d'oeuvres and cash bar for guests to enjoy
CityGate Real Estate, 404 Glenwood Ave. (Hours 6-9 p.m.)
What? Art walk with opening cocktail reception and exhibitions
City Market, 200 E. Martin St.
What? Houses multiple First Friday venues
Special: Live outdoor music
David Wade Salon, 612 Glenwood Ave.
What? Salon that hosts artist receptions
Special: Complimentary food and beverages
Deco Raleigh, 19 W Hargett St, Suite 108
What? A collection of unique decorative items
Estate Boutique, 300 W Hargett St.
What? Trendy men's boutique carrying the latest apparel
Special: In-store discounts up to 50 percent
Feelgoodz Treehouse, 206 S Wilmington St
What? A conscious-casual footwear brand
Special: $19 off any purchase of $50 or more
The Gallery at Vintage 21, 117 S West St. (Hours 7-10 p.m.)
What? Gallery with exhibits and live music
The Montague Building, 128 E Hargett St.
What? A collection of full-service marketing and multimedia companies
Special: Art and refreshments by Giant Head, Triangle Blvd, El Toro Interactive, and Motion Adrenaline
Moon and Lola, 208 S Wilmington St.
What? Upscale jewelry and accessory boutique
Special: 15 percent off merchandise storewide
Ornamentea, 509 N West St.
What? Fine beads and jewelry making supplies
Special: Free project from 6-8 p.m. (this month it's a "'love' word necklace")
Raleigh Wine Shop, 126 Glenwood Ave.
Special: 10 percent off of bottle purchases from the WineStation to drink on-site or to go
Simkin, 718 B W Lane St.
What? Hair studio and gallery space
Special: Complimentary wine and appetizers
Stitch & Holly Aiken Bags
What? Holly Aiken designs beautiful bags and the place also contains contemporary art
Special: 10 percent off all bags
STOREFRONT 4 art and architecture, 704 N Person St.
What? A forum for exploring emerging ideas in art and architecture
Special: All books half off retail price
Vault Yoga, 234 Fayetteville St
What? A yoga studio in a bank vault featuring monthly exhibits
The Wine Feed, 18 Glenwood Ave. Suite B (Hours 6:30-9 p.m.)
Special: Taste eight different wines ($3 for one person, $5 for two people)
Marbles Kid Museum (Hours 5-8 p.m.)
Special: An evening of play and adventure for the whole family! Free for members, $10 for families or $6 for an adult and a child, $2 for each additional guest
NC Museum of History Museum Shop, 5 E Edenton St.
Special: 20 percent off any purchase over $30
Contemporary Art Museum, 409 W Martin St.
Special: First Friday admission is $5 and free for members, or purchase a museum membership and get in free with a friend. This month there will be a book swap, a hands-on activity, a live DJ, a cash bar and Porchetta and Baguettaboutit food trucks at CAM
Art on display
There are also some 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.