Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

12 family-friendly activities for weekend of Sept. 20 to Sept. 22

Posted September 18, 2019 8:40 p.m. EDT

Thousands flock to the Museum of Natural Sciences for BugFest 2015 on September 19th, 2015. This years bug theme is Cicadas, featuring tons of bug-themed exhibits, games and activities. (Lexi Baird /

Corn mazes and pumpkin patches are starting to open up for the season (and our database of Halloween and fall events and venues has the details). But, if you're not quite ready for fall activities, here are more events across the region where you can find family fun. (As always, check's Out & About calendar for more ideas.)


The 24th annual BugFest is  9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, inside and outside the NC Museum of Natural Sciences. The event, the largest bug-centric festival in the United States, features all kinds of demonstrations, games, activities and more. It's free.

Lake Raleigh on NC State's Centennial Campus will host a free outdoor movie from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Friday, Sept. 20. The gates open and food trucks arrive at 6 p.m. The movie starts at 7:30 p.m. They'll be screening "Toy Story 4." It's free.

Historic Yates Mill County Park will host its Fall Harvest Celebration from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21. The free annual event explores seasonal themes on a farm, so you'll find historic trades and demonstrations, handmade arts and crafts, field games and a scavenger hunt.

Raleigh Little Theatre's Stephenson Amphitheatre and Raleigh Rose Garden will host Groove in the Garden, featuring eight live performances on two stages, local food and drinks, art vendors, a kids zone and more. Festival gates open at 1 p.m. and entertainment runs from 2 pm to 8 pm, Saturday, Sept. 21. Tickets are $15 in advance, $45 for a four pack purchased in advance, $20 for tickets purchased the day of and free for kids 5 and under.


Earth Moves, the biggest outdoor exhibit that the Museum of Life and Science has opened in several years, is now open.

Centerfest Arts Festival is 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 22, in downtown Durham. The free festival includes music, performances, art and a Creative Kids Zone, along with lots of other activities.

Chapel Hill

The Magical Hill Festival and Fairy House Competition is at Chapel Hill Community Center Park, 120 S. Estes Dr., from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21. The festival, according to a description, embraces "everything whimsical and magical." Fairy or gnome costumes encouraged.


Kids Everywear is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 20, and Saturday, Sept. 21; 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 22; and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday, Sept. 23. Some items are half off on Sunday. And some items are half off or 75 percent off on Monday. It takes place at Cary Towne Center.

Take a Child Outside Day is 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 22, at Bond Park Boathouse, 190 Bond Park Dr. The free event features hikes, crafts and boating at Bond Park. It's one of many Take a Child Outside Week events coming up across the Triangle.


Hog Day is 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday, Sept. 20, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, in downtown Hillsborough. The event includes a BBQ contest, arts and crafts vendors, car show, children's area and more.


Carolina Kids Consignment Sale is at the Johnston County Livestock Arena, 520 County Home Rd., Smithfield. It's open to the public 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 19. and Friday, Sept. 20; 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21; and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 22. Some items are half off on Sunday.

Wake Forest

Good Neighbor Day is 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 21, at Joyner Park. The free event offers up food and family entertainment, along with an opportunity to meet your neighbors.