Raleigh, N.C. — There's plenty to do in the Triangle this weekend. Here are our favorite picks.
Wide Open Bluegrass
IBMA World of Bluegrass - The International Bluegrass Music Association will be hosting this annual celebration in downtown Raleigh starting Tuesday. Highlights include the Wide Open Bluegrass Ramble, which features more than 200 showcase performers at various clubs throughout downtown Raleigh, the IBMA Business Conference and the IBMA Awards ceremony at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium. Everything culminates with the Wide Open Bluegrass festival in downtown Raleigh Friday and Saturday. There will be ticketed shows at Red Hat Amphitheater both days. The Wide Open street festival will be held on Fayetteville Street and is open to the public starting at noon each day. Enjoy Artsplosure's Arts Market area, Got to Be NC products, live music and even learn some moves in the dancing tent. WRAL is a sponsor of IBMA's Wide Open Bluegrass. For more information, check out our WOB guide.
TerraVita Food and Drink Festival - This annual festival takes over Chapel Hill this weekend. Event highlights include the Hill Fire: Pits, Spits and Grills Dinner at Carrboro Town Commons Friday night and the Grand Tasting on the Green at Southern Village on Saturday. Tickets are still available for some events.
Amazing Pepper Festival - Abundance North Carolina presents this ninth annual festival on Sunday at Chapel Hill's Briar Chapel neighborhood. For $20 to $30 in advance or $35 at the door, guests get to walk along and eat samples of gourmet, local food into which some of the best chefs of the central Piedmont have incorporated all types of locally grown peppers…some sweet, some hot, some smoky. There will also be micro-brews to purchase along the way.
NC Fresh Catch Seafood and Music Festival - Durham Central Park will host this festival on Saturday rain or shine. There will be fresh cooked, local seafood, food trucks and drinks by Fullsteam and Bull City Ciderworks. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Children ages 12 and younger are admitted free. All food and beverages are available for purchase inside.
FestiFall Arts Festival - Head to Chapel Hill's Franklin Street on Sunday for a vibrant market of handmade artworks, live music and more.
For the foodies
Mac and Cheese Throwdown - Relish Cafe and Bar in north Raleigh hosts this event Saturday featuring some of Raleigh's best chefs and bartenders who are ready to throw down. Enjoy live music from The Magic Pipers, a fun photo booth, raffle prizes and more. Tickets are $45 per person and include admission to both the mac and bar competitions, plus 10 free tokens good for voting for your favorites.
Whole Hog Barbecue Championship - Each fall, the best whole hog barbecue chefs in North Carolina square off to become the state champion. This year, the champion will be crowned at the IBMA's Wide Open Bluegrass Festival. Judging is happening on Saturday at 1 E. Lenior Street in downtown Raleigh. After judging is finished, the winning barbecue will be chopped up and sold for lunch on Cabarrus Street next to the Convention Center.
Sandwiches are $5 and proceeds go to the Interfaith Food Shuttle - and you can get in on the excitement at two dinners planned Friday and Saturday nights.
Wine & Bacon - Bacon is all the rage these days, so Chatham Hill Winery is paring it with wine this weekend. Enjoy all wine tastings with a sample of Pig Candy.
Music and film
Jason Aldean - The country singer brings his Six String Circus tour to the Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek in Raleigh Friday night.
Lucinda Williams - This three-time Grammy award winning rock, folk, country, singer and songwriter will play UNC's Memorial Hall on Sunday.
Friday Night Tribute Series - North Hill continues its free concert series this week with the Zac Brown Band tribute band, 20 Ride. The show starts at 7 p.m. at Midtown Park.
Billy Joel/Elton John Tribute show - If you love tribute shows, you might want to check out The Ritz Saturday night. This long-running tribute show features Ronnie Smith as Elton John and Mike Santoro as Billy Joel.
Splatterflix - Enjoy scary movies? Carolina Theatre of Durham will feature some retro horror films Friday and Saturday as part of its "Splatterflix" series.
Anaconda - Snakes will be the focus of the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences Final Friday event this week. There will be screening of the film "Anaconda," and live snakes will be on hand. Doors open at 5:30 p.m., and movies and presentations begin at 7 p.m. Admission is $5.
Art Deco Cars at NCMA - See cars from the 1920s and 194s at the Rolling Sculptures exhibit at the N.C. Museum of Art. The exhibit kicks off Saturday and runs through January.