Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

First Friday Family Fun: Raleigh History Month, Robot vs. Aztec Mummy, Mad Men Modern exhibit, more

Posted April 1, 2014

Courtesy: N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences

Friday is the first Friday of April, making it First Friday in downtown Raleigh when shops, museums, galleries and restaurants stay open late or offer special deals.

First Friday is fun for adults, but it's also a great opportunity to expose kids to all kinds of art. Here are some family-friendly selections for this month. 

The City of Raleigh Museum on Fayetteville Street will kick off Raleigh History Month with special activities from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Members of the Raleigh Heritage Trail will be sponsoring a night of games, crafts, and information sessions about the city’s historic resources. Costumed interpreters will bring to life over 150 years of Raleigh history from 1792 to 1942. The night will also feature the opening of a new exhibit by N.C. State students on the history of communication in the 20th century.

A relentless machine and gruesome corpse will do battle at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences on Friday night ... on screen. The museum's sci fi flick this week is "The Robot vs. the Aztec Mummy," a title that just makes me laugh out loud. This 1958 movie is part of a classic Mexican mummy series (of course) and might be a lot of fun with tweens and teens. It starts at 7 p.m. and is free. Speaking of teens, the museum's monthly Teen Science Cafe at 6 p.m. in the Daily Planet Cafe will feature a talk about marine creatures such as cownose rays and deep-sea invertebrates and how the organisms move and connect with each other. The museum is open until 9 p.m. on First Fridays.

Marbles Kids Museum is open until 7 p.m. and will play host to one of the N.C. Science Festival's Statewide Star Parties. See the sun using a specially equipped telescope, learn more about light, try some lunar science activities and more. It's free with admission, which is $5 per person. Marbles also as a First Friday Kids Camp until 8:30 p.m. Pre-registration required for the camp.

CAM Raleigh, the contemporary art museum, is open from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Admission is free. Middle school docents will be on hand to tell you about the art. There will be food trucks, creation station and more.

Blake Street Shops & Studios will feature collage work by Hoop & Stick, digital art by Ryan Miller, giant modern paintings by Joe Wright and textual elements by Ian Sands and the students of Apex High School. Plus, music and snacks. It's open 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Lovers of the TV show "Mad Men" will want to check out the Mahler Fine Art Gallery. Mad Men Modern will feature paintings from the private collection of Rosser Reeves, the well-known 1960s-era advertising executive who inspired the character of Don Draper, played by Jon Hamm, on AMC’s hit television drama. The paintings were donated to The Green Chair Project by Reeves’ granddaughter, Robin Rowan, who lives in Raleigh. It's open from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The Visual Art Exchange is open from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. with a variety of pieces in many genres. 

Flanders Gallery, open from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., has an exhibit called On Land, which features photos, painting, video and sculpture from New York-based artists Greg Lindquist and Mary Mattingly.

Benelux Cafe (which has yummy waffles, may I add) will be open 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. with the third annual Raleigh Bikes Art Show. The show will feature bike related paintings, photos, sculpture, sketches, prints, crafts and more (even custom made bike frames!) from local artists.

Artspace, with its broad collection of artists and exhibitions, is open 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on First Fridays. It's a great place for families to wander around to see all kinds of art. A new exhibition, Redefining Ritual, brings together the work by artists Courtney McCracken and Tracy Spencer-Stonestreet. They ask what it means to both inherit and make traditional expectations of home and femininity your own in the 21st century, sometimes visualizing as a literal burden or entanglement, according to Artspace.

Trinity Gallery will celebrate the start of spring with a spring exhibition featuring the work of Stephanie Gehring, Laura Berendson Hughes and Lysandra Lestini. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., enjoy free food, a craft room for the kids and live music along with art.

The Cupcake Shoppe, 104 Glenwood Ave., offer its buy one, get one half off cupcakes deal on First Fridays from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. There's also free coffee.

Videri Chocolate Factory offers free tours of its small chocolate factory, along with free samples. Relax with some coffee or hot chocolate from their bar. It's open until 9 p.m.

Dickey's Barbecue Pit, 170 E. Davie St.,offers free dessert with purchase of a barbecue meat plate and drink or one free kid's meal for ages 12 and under per paid adult meal of equal or greater value.


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