Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Weekend Plans: Christmas parade, Winterfest opens, Jan Brett visits, more

Posted November 20, 2013
Updated November 22, 2013

2012 WRAL Raleigh Christmas Parade

We have some big holiday events on tap for this weekend, including the 69th annual WRAL Raleigh Christmas Parade. 

Two of the region's major light shows - Lake Myra Christmas and Meadow Lights - will be open this weekend. Santa train tickets are for sale. And there’s more. Be sure to check Go Ask Mom’s Holiday Central page for all the details.

And, as always, check’s Out & About calendar for more family weekend fun. Here’s what’s happening!

The Raleigh Christmas Parade, which starts on Hillsborough Street and continues to the State Capitol where it turns and runs down Fayetteville Street, starts at 10 a.m., Saturday. This is one of those events that you’ll want to get to early to get the best seat. My husband is usually there about an hour to 45 minutes before it starts to save spots for us. You’ll see all sorts of local groups, performers and more, including some big balloons. Can’t wait! Fingers crossed for a dry morning. WRAL is forecasting some possible sprinkles.

Winterfest, Raleigh’s downtown ice rink, will open Friday for the season. Hours are 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday; and noon to 5 p.m., Sunday. The Christmas Parade will end just a few steps away from the ice rink in City Plaza on Fayetteville Street on Saturday, so I suspect it will be busy. The rink will be open six days a week and closed Mondays (with some exceptions). Admission is $9, including skate rental. Update: Santa will be at Winterfest from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., Saturday.

Santa arrives at The Streets at Southpoint and Northgate Mall in Durham on Friday. The arrival includes a holiday concert from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday, by the Sandbox Band. He’ll also enjoy a special breakfast with kids at Cross Creek Mall in Fayetteville on Saturday. Read my earlier post for details. Also this week, Cameron Village will host its popular holiday open house (including visits with Santa) on Thursday. And Santa will light the giant Christmas tree at North Hills on Saturday. Read this post to learn more about those events.

Downtown Wendell, home of the now open Lake Myra Christmas light display, will host an official Lighting of the Town Square at 6 p.m., Friday, at J. Ashley Wall Square, 17 W. Third St.

After the Raleigh Christmas Parade, many head over to the N.C. Museum of History’s American Indian Heritage Festival now in its 18th year. It’s 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, inside and outside the downtown Raleigh museum. It’s free. The event features music and dance performances, crafts, hands-on activities and much more. Festival goers can watch a dugout canoe being burned into shape; join a cooking demonstration; and try American Indian foods with a modern twist.

Jan Brett, one of today’s best-loved author/illustrators, will stop at Quail Ridge Books & Music with her newest book “Cinders.” She’ll be at the Raleigh store at 5 p.m., Saturday, with her big tour bus. This is a signing line ticket event so you’ll need to buy Cinders from Quail Ridge in order to stand in line to have her sign it. We love pouring over Jan Brett books at my house!

Marbles Kids Museum will officially open its new news helicopter in the Around Town gallery Saturday. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., they’ll celebrate the opening of News Around Town. Read my earlier post for more about other changes to the gallery this month, including the opening of Ready, Set, School. Also, at 1 p.m. and 2 p.m., Sunday, members of City Ballet will perform parts of The Nutcracker. It's all free with admission, which is $5 per person.

The Birthing Nest and Felicity Birthing Services are teaming up to sponsor a panel discussion Saturday about how to identify and work with mothers who exhibit symptoms of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. It is 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, at Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill. Read my earlier post for more information about the event and this important topic.

Levin JCC in Durham will hold a Hanukkah Festival from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Sunday. There will be a marketplace with holiday gifts and Hanukkah food and games.

Note: The Raleigh Little Theater’s Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells continues this weekend, but shows are sold out!

And a reminder: The Museum of Life and Science in Durham has its Springs, Sprockets and Pulleys exhibit open. Read my earlier post for more information about this great, interactive exhibit featuring mechanical sculptures.


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