Raleigh, N.C. — With beach cities and towns hosting free concerts and events, make this Memorial Day weekend an easy vacation.
Enjoy free live music and fireworks at Carolina Beach. David Dixon Trio and The Cut start playing at 6:30 p.m., and after the sun sets, watch a fireworks display over the ocean. (Carolina Beach Boardwalk, Cape Fear Boulevard, Carolina Beach)
Rolling Stones tribute band Satisfaction performs in historic Wilmington at 6 p.m. as part of the Downtown Sundown Concert Series. (Downtown Wilmington – Riverfront Park, Water Street at Princess, Wilmington)
The 19th Annual Orange Street ArtsFest is Saturday and Sunday in Wilmington. Shop for unique art, watch theater performances and let the kids have fun in the Children's Zone, which has inflatables, toys and yummy treats. (Downtown Wilmington, on Orange Street between Front and 2nd Streest and inside the Hannah Block Historic USO/Community Arts Center)
Head to Atlantic Beach for their annual fireworks display at 9 p.m. The fireworks will go off from The Circle, which is the main public beach access and boardwalk area. (Atlantic Boulevard, Atlantic Beach)
Carteret County Veteran's Services is holding a Service of Remembrance in Beaufort to pay tribute to the men and women who lost their lives fighting for this country. There will be many guest speakers including Congressman Walter B. Jones. The service starts at 9:30 a.m. (302 Court House Square, Beaufort)
Fort Macon State Park is open for tours through the weekend, including cannon firing and Civil War musket demonstrations. (2303 East Fort Macon Road, Atlantic Beach)
Head to the Battleship North Carolina for the 49th Annual Memorial Day Observance. There will be a military guest speaker, a color guard, a 21-gun salute, a military band and more. (Battleship North Carolina, 1 Battleship Road, Wilmington)
Roanoke Island on the Outer Banks is the site of the Shallowbag Shag Beach Music Festival. It's a full day of beach music and fun for the whole family. Tickets are $25 in advance. (Roanoke Island Festival Park, 1 Festival Park, Manteo)
If you enjoy running on the beach, register for the 3rd Annual Shore Break 5K in Cape Hatteras. The course includes paved roads, boardwalks, beach walkways and sand. A Tide Pool Fun Run is right after the 5K. After the running is done, enjoy a post-race party with pancakes and beer. (Beach Klub, 40127 NC Highway 12, Avon)
Two national cemeteries on the coast are open and holding ceremonies on Memorial Day:
- New Bern National Cemetery, 1711 National Avenue, New Bern. Ceremony at 11 a.m.
- Wilmington National Cemetery, 2011 Market Street, Wilmington. Ceremony at 11 a.m.
What are your Memorial Day plans? Tell us in the comments section on the right!