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Weekend Plans: Strollerthon, duck race, fire safety, free concerts and more

Fall festivals, fire station open houses, a community day at the Nasher, train rides, free concerts ... there's a lot to do this weekend.

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Duck Race
Sarah Lindenfeld Hall

Your weekend family fun ...

After a fun Saturday last weekend at the UNC Science Expo, I'm excited to spend this Saturday morning from 8 a.m. to noon at the farmers' market at North Hills. North Hills will bring out their big, colorful blocks that kids love to climb on. I'll have all kinds of giveaways, contests and snacks. Check my earlier post for more. Would love to see you there!
Postpartum Education and Support's Strollerthon starts at 9 a.m. Saturday at Bond Metro Park, 801 High House Rd. in Cary. The group is dedicated to the emotional wellness of mothers and is part of the long-running Moms Supporting Moms group that has been helping local moms suffering from postpartum depression. Read more about that group in an earlier post by one of its members. There is still time to get involved. And they'll be raffling off a Bumbleride stroller as well.
The free Fox50 Family Fest and Great American Tobacco Duck Race is from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday at American Tobacco in Durham.The event includes live music and entertainment, food, inflatables, face painting, and more. The Sandbox Band will play at noon and 2:30 p.m. The main event is The Great American Tobacco Duck Race, which benefits local charities. Thousands of ducks will be released down the Ol' Bull River at the American Tobacco Campus. Prizes will be awarded at both the individual and corporate level. Money raised will benefit Duke Children's Hospital and Health Center, the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle and Explorer Post 50.
You might remember my earlier post on the Raleigh Area Public Safety racing league. The league races super-fast go-karts and includes a program for kids. If you'd like to get a bit of a taste of what this is all about, the adult league will have an endurance race starting at 5 p.m. Friday at Rush Hour Karting in Garner. Check the website for details. It's free for spectators and I'm told should last two or three hours.
Next week is National Fire Prevention Week and at least two local fire departments are planning some big events. The public is welcome to visit all of Raleigh's fire stations from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. And a Safety Festival is planned at Cary's Bond Park on Saturday. Check my earlier post for details about these and other events related to the week.
The N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences opens its new exhibit on Saturday called "Animal Grossology." The exhibit explores animal digestion and other things that will be pretty gross. Check my earlier post for more.
Raleigh's Fall Arts Fair is from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Sertoma Arts Center, 1400 W. Millbrook Rd. The event will feature arts exhibits, demonstrations, art activities for kids, a fishing derby at the Shelley Lake dock and more. Check my earlier review of Shelley Lake park and playground, which is home to the Sertoma Arts Center.
Children's singer/songwriter Roger Day will perform a free concert at 3 p.m. Saturday at Sertoma Amphitheatre at Bond Park (lots going on there this weekend). Day has won multiple Parents Choice Awards and has been praised by Entertainment Weekly and School Library Journal. His concerts are interactive and his music is uplifting and silly. The concert is part of Cary's Fall Sertoma Series.

Green Level Masonic Lodge will hold its 29th annual fish fry at Green Level Baptist Church, 8509 Green Level Church Rd. in Cary, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday. Plates are $8. And proceeds will go to The Masonic Home for Children at Oxford and The Masonic and Eastern Star Home in Greensboro. You'll find sheltered picnic tables at the church and a playground for the kids.

Quail Ridge Books and Music on Wade Avenue in Raleigh will hold its giant annual used book sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the store. The sale benefits Books for Kids and includes bargains on books for all ages. The store will celebrate its 26th anniversary on Sunday with events starting at 1 p.m. A children's storytime with Vanessa Budnick of the ASPCA is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Nasher Museum of Art on the Duke campus in Durham will mark its 5th anniversary with a free community day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. There will be a gallery hunt, make-and-take crafts and a photo booth all day. Kids will enjoy a production of "The Frog Prince" by Rags to Riches Theatre for Young Audiences at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Fall festivals continue with Selma's Railroad Days this weekend. The event includes live entertainment, food vendors, arts and crafts vendors, rides, special events, carnival a parade and more. The festival runs 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free. The International Festival of Raleigh is Friday through Sunday at the Raleigh Convention Center and includes an area for kids with games, face painting and other activities. And Festifall, the downtown Chapel Hill arts festival with some special activities for kids, is from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.
New Hope Valley Railway will be running its trains starting at 11 a.m. Sunday. The trip takes you on an hour-long ride through the woods of southwestern Wake County. Be sure to check the website for important train ride information before you go. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for kids 2 to 12.
And at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, Broad Street Cafe will host Big Bang Boom, a power pop trio that writes and performs parent-family children's music. I saw them earlier this year and it's a fun show. Broad Street Cafe will host BSC Kids on the first and third Sundays of the month from October to March.
And thanks to jreed1920 for reminding me that Maripolooza is from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary. You'll find family-friendly music and entertainment and it all supports the Mariposa School in Cary, which provides one-on-one year-round education to kids with autism and other developmental disabilities.

And some reminders ...

There are consignment sales this weekend in Raleigh and Benson.
And if you're looking for fall fun, check our Halloween and fall fun guide where you can find area corn mazes, hayrides, pumpkin patches and more.