By Kay Whatley, Editor
This list may include events from North Carolina counties of Edgecombe, Franklin, Nash, Johnston, Wake, Wayne, Wilson, and beyond including a few unique coastal or mountain events. While most listed events are free happenings, some ticketed events may be included.
Events may be rescheduled, delayed by weather, canceled, times adjusted, or locations changed without our knowledge. Contact an event’s organizer directly via provided links for updates.
Check out our separate “Halloween/Fall Movie Showings” events here.
Thursday, October 25, 2018
Pet Food for Fines Drive
October 22-26, 2018 @9am-6pm
Library patrons may bring in canned pet food (no expired or open food) and receive $1-per-can off their overdue library fines (not lost-item fees). Patrons may donate pet food without owing, too, and help the library collect pet food in celebration of National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month and Make a Difference Day. Only at the HD Cooley Library, 114 W Church Street, Nashville NC. Benefits the Nash County Animal Shelter. The library is on Facebook here.
Wake Forest NC “Halloween Spooktacular”
Thursday, October 25, 2018 @ 4:30-8:30pm
Held at the Flaherty Park Community Center, 1226 N. White Street, Wake Forest NC. Organized by the Wake Forest Parks, Recreation & Cultural Resources Department. This is a free, family-oriented festival for children ages 12 and under. Enjoy face painting, a cupcake walk, games, free pumpkin giveaway (while they last), and costumes are welcome. See event here.
Blackbeard’s Pirate Jamboree
October 25-28, 2018
Celebrate Ocracoke NC’s pirate heritage with a pirate encampment, a reenactment of Blackbeard’s last battle, and more. Visitors are encouraged to wear “buccaneer gear.” See schedule, vendors and details at www.visitocracokenc.com/event/2018-blackbeards-pirate-jamboree.
Friday, October 26, 2018
Franklin County (NC) Farmers Market
Friday, October 26, 2018 @ 8:30am
Located at 137 Shannon Village, Louisburg NC, this farmers’ market is open Tuesday (9am-until), Friday (8:30am-until), Saturday (8am-until), through December. On Facebook here.
Nashville Fall Fest*
Friday, October 26, 2018 @ 4-5:30pm
The fun is happening at the HD Cooley Library, 114 W Church Street, Nashville NC, with this event. Enjoy games, trick-or-treating, a pet adoption event, and more. Get your face painted or a glitter tattoo.
*UPDATE: While the movie and outdoor events have been canceled, the indoor library festivities will be held.
Movie Under the Stars (MOVIE CANCELED) Saturday, October 26, 2018 @ dusk Gather at the HD Cooley Library, 114 W Washington Street, Nashville NC, for a free screening of a Halloween-themed, family-friendly movie, popcorn, and community. See the Town of Nashville’s Parks and Rec calendar for this event and more.
*UPDATE: While the movie and outdoor events have been canceled, the indoor library festivities will be held.
Espionage Dinner Theater
Friday, October 26, 2018 @ 6-8:30pm
This inaugural dinner theater program will be held at the CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center, 100 N Queen Street, Kinston NC.
This program will begin with a short presentation on female Civil War spies Emeline Pigott, Belle Boyd, Rose O’ Neil Greenhow, Elizabeth Van Lew, and Harriet Tubman. Evening includes a presentation/play plus interactive/educational spy activities in the museum. Catered dinner included with ticket. Ticket prices are $15 per adult and $10 per child, available here. Register online or contact Rachel Kennedy via email or call the site at 252.526.9600.
An Evening of Mystery and Imagination: The Tell-Tale Heart
Friday, October 26, 2018 @ 6:30-8:30pm
A wine and cheese social to celebrate the literature of the fantastic, featuring a live performance of Edgar Allan Poe’s Classic story The Tell-Tale Heart. Held at Edgecombe County Memorial Library (ECML), 909 N Main Street, Tarboro NC. Admission is $10 per person, and tickets are available at the library. Proceeds will go to ECML Friends of the Library. Library information is online here.
Ghost Train at Tweetsie Railroad
October 26-27, 2018 @ 7:30pm
The Ghost Train has returned to Tweetsie Railroad, located at 300 Tweetsie Railroad Lane, Blowing Rock NC (Watauga County). Gates open at 7:30pm and there are other ghostly activities around the train. Contact the ticket office at 877.893.3874 or online at tweetsie.com.
International Festival of Raleigh
October 26-28, 2018
Enjoy food and cultural exhibits from around the globe, music and dance, dozens of vendors (bazaar), and more at this 33rd-annual celebration. Held at 500 S Salisbury Street, Raleigh NC. Tickets available for individuals or groups, ranging from $8 to $30. See details on internationalfocus.org.
Cape Fear Fair and Expo
October 26-November 4, 2018
Join the fun at this annual fair and vendor event. Held at Wilmington International Airport, 1740 Airport Boulevard, Wilmington NC. See fair hours and complete schedule at www.capefearfair.com.
Saturday, October 27, 2018
NC Yam Festival
Saturday, October 27, 2018
Monster Movie Marathon
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 9am-6pm
This free event, no registration required, will be held at the Wilson County Public Library’s main library, 249 Nash Street W, Wilson NC. Celebrate Halloween early with the Wilson County Public Library with an all-day movie marathon of classic black-and-white horror films. Attendees may bring a lunch. The library will be serving free popcorn and lemonade to movie watchers. (Movie ratings: unrated due to age.) The library is online at www1.youseemore.com/wilsoncountypl.
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 10am-4pm
This annual fall fest includes car show, live music, food trucks, vendors for your gift-shopping needs, crafts, games, and inflatables. Held by the Town of Elm City. Address given is 117 S Railroad Street, Elm City NC (Wilson County). For more information, visit elmcitync.com.
Fall Fun Fest
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 10am-4pm
Head to Rolesville for fun in the park. Held in Main Street Park, 200 S Main Street, Rolesville NC. There will be arts and crafts vendors, informational booths, small businesses selling goods, hot dogs, live music, and costume contests. Interested in being a vendor? See vendor application form here (PDF).
Downtown Garner Pop-up Market
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 10am-2pm
Monthly public market with baked goods, locally made items, fresh produce, food trucks, and more. Held in Garner Recreational Park, 221 E Garner Road, Garner NC. Future date is November 24, 2018. See event here.
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 10am-noon
Mischief, magic, spirits, and fortunes! Enjoy a kid-oriented daytime version of our popular Halloween Phantasmagoria event with crafts and hands-on activities. Learn all about Halloween history, and what Halloween would have been like for North Carolina kids in the 1870s. Requested donation of $5 per car at Duke Homestead State Historic Site, 2828 Duke Homestead Road, Durham NC. See details at www.ncdcr.gov/family-phantasmagoria.
Note that the night-time Phantasmagoria is the evening of October 26, 2018. (See here.)
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 4-7pm
Free family fun at the Rocky Mount Event Center, 285 NE Main Street, Rocky Mount NC. Free treat bags to the first 200 kids in costumes, special guests Moana and others, plus games, face painting, a magic show, inflatables, music, food, an arcade, a haunted house, and more. See details on the Rocky Mount Event Center website.
Foster Fall Festival
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 5-7pm
Join the fun at W.A. Foster Center, 1012 S John Street, Goldsboro NC, for a costume contest, dance off, games, refreshments, and more. Tickets are $5 per person (ages 7-14) and may be purchased online at www.goldsboroparksandrec.com/register (must have/make an account to register). For more information, call 919.734.4164.
Thriller Night-Downtown Goldsboro*
Rescheduled to October 27, 2018 @ 5-8pm*
This fourth-annual event offers both trunk-or-treat and trick-or-treat, kids activities, vendors, costume contest, food trucks, family activities, and a Thriller dance performance at 7pm. This is a free event, with registration requested through ticket link on the Facebook event. Free swag bags available for registrants. Held in and around downtown, 130 N Center Street, Goldsboro NC.
*UPDATE: Rescheduled from Friday to Saturday.
Pilot Harvest Festival
Saturday, October 27, 2018 @ 5-8pm
Enjoy games, inflatables, free sno cones, a free hot dog dinner, popcorn, and much more. Join in the cake walk, pumpkin pickup, trunk or treat, ride a pony, or visit the petting zoo area. This free event designed for community fun is organized by Pilot Baptist Church, 8103 NC-39 Hwy, Zebulon NC. Sign up (requested for planning) may be done via www.jotform.com/chrismoniz/PilotHarvest2018.
Victorian Mourning Practices Presentation and Social
Saturday, October 27, 2018, 6:30-11pm
Immerse yourself in a real, unusual, and slightly creepy part of the Victorian Era by attending a unique, historical funeral. This event will be held at the Weil House, 200 W Chestnut Street, Goldsboro NC. Presented by the Wayne County Historical Association, the evening presentation offers immersion in a historical home, complete with Victorian era-appropriate furnishings, demonstrations, and displays. See our article here.
Halloween Daze & Spooky Knights
October 27-28 @ 10am-5:30pm
This special weekend at the Carolina Renaissance Festival includes a Halloween costume contest, special Knights of the Living Dead zombie jousting, trick-or-treating, and much more. Address is 16445 Poplar Tent Road, Huntersville NC. Visit the festival website for details and ticket prices.
Sunday, October 28, 2018
Trunk Or Treat
Sunday, October 28, 2018 @ 11am-1pm
Join the fun at Wave Church Wilson, 5334 Lamm Road, Wilson NC, with safe trunk-or-treating for kids from the community. Decorated your vehicle’s trunk and stocked it with sweets (optional). Children encouraged to wear costumes to this event. See wavechurchnc.com/events/2018/10/28/trunk-or-treat.
Wake Forest Food Truck Rodeo
Sunday, October 28, 2018 @ noon-4pm
Enjoy food trucks of all types, a Kid’s Zone, and beer tent at the Wake Forest Renaissance Centre 405 S Brooks Street, Wake Forest NC. Vendors selling items for now, or for your holiday gift-giving. This rodeo will be held rain or shine. Optionally, bring lawn chairs / folding table for comfort. See more via the Facebook event page.
Halloween Treats at the Botanical Gardens
Sunday, October 28, 2018 @ 4-6pm
Dress the kids in family-friendly (non-violent/non-scary) costumes and bring them for trick-or-treating, contests, a parade, ans “spooky storytelling” at the Wilson Botanical Gardens, 1806 Goldsboro Street S, Wilson NC. No pets. It is requested guests park “at the Senior Center or in the grassy lot next door.” See details and contact information at www.wilsonbotanicalgardens.com/events.
Family Sundays (every-other Sunday)
Sunday, September 30-December 23, 2018 @ 2-4pm (every-other Sunday)
Sundays are for families, and are free. Bring your family to the Art Gallery for an afternoon full of family-friendly activities instructed by April Dickens. Drop into the gallery for art making, interactive play, gallery sketching, or go on your own exhibition tour! Registration is not required, drop-ins of age 3 and up with accompanying adults welcome. Held at Imperial Centre for the Arts & Sciences, 270 Gay Street, Rocky Mount NC. See the event on Facebook. For more information, visit imperialcentre.org. (Article)
Knightdale Parks and Rec Halloween Event
*Rescheduled to Monday, October 29, 2018 @ 5:30-8:30pm
See details and updates via this Knightdale NC Facebook page.
Clayton Harvest Festival: Halloween Night
Wednesday, October 31, 2018 @ 5-9pm*
(Rescheduled from September due to Hurricane Florence) This is more than just a Halloween Night. Festival planners and Clayton Chamber of Commerce have loads of events planned, costumes, trunk-or-treat, hot dogs, contests, a free movie, plus a Midway carnival. Festival events span Halloween and several days following, taking over Clayton NC. See the Clayton Harvest Festival Facebook page for the event details and a number of posts describing the different parts of the festival, and what’s planned for each day. Note: *Time change.
North Carolina Seafood Festival (changed to Hurricane Relief Event)
Saturday, November 3, 2018 @ 11am-11pm
Enjoy food, music and community while raising funds for hurricane relief at the “Amped Up for YOU-Tilities” benefit. Held on the waterfront in Morehead City NC. Updates available via this Facebook page. Basic information on www.ncseafoodfestival.org.
COA Native American Heritage Harvest Meal
Saturday, November 3, 2018 @ 12:30pm
COA Culinary Arts students are partnering with the Chowanoke Native American Tribe for this harvest meal. Includes demonstration of Native American cooking techniques. Held at the Iredell House, 107 E Church Street, Edenton NC. To reserve tickets, call 252.482.2637. Fee is $5 per person and spots will go fast; reserve by October 31, 2018. See www.ncdcr.gov/coa-native-american-heritage-harvest-meal.
Wilson Whirligig Festival
November 3-4, 2018
The Whirligig Festival is held in Historic Downtown Wilson NC each year, celebrating the life of local folk artist Vollis Simpson and his whirligig creations. Find festival details at whirligigfestivalnc.org.
2018 Ten Plant Tour Series
Friday, November 9, 2018 @ noon
On this date, the topic is “10 Plants That Make Great Holiday Greenery” in this event by the Nash County Co-op Extension Service. Held at the Nash County Arboretum, located at the Nash County Agriculture Center, 1006 Eastern Avenue, Nashville NC. See full 2018 tour at nash.ces.ncsu.edu.
Stepping Into The Past: BBQ Cook-off
Saturday, November 9-10, 2018 @ 10am-2pm
This series focuses on demonstrations and displays of traditional / old-time processes. This presentation is included with museum admission fee. See upcoming topics at www.tobaccofarmlifemuseum.org/events/stepping-into-the-past. Held at the Tobacco Farm Life Museum, 709 N Church Street, Kenly NC.
November 9-10 is BBQ Cook Off Challenge: BBQ and family fun activities. Future date: Kenly Christmas Celebration (November 30 and December 1, 2018).
Selma Saturdays Arts and Crafts Market
Saturday, November 10, 2018 @ 9am-1pm
Markets are held once-a-month in Fall and Spring. The market welcomes arts and craft vendors and farmers to sell their wares. The location is the Uptown Selma Gazebo, in the back parking lot of Town Hall, near 100 E Anderson Street, Selma NC. The market season Facebook event is here. See www.selma-nc.com/selma-saturdays.
Shaw RV Family Movie Series
Saturday, November 10, 2018 @ 5:30-7:30pm
Enjoy a free movie outdoors on the football field at Rolesville Middle School, 4700 Burlington Mills Road, Rolesville NC. Bring a chair or blanket for comfort. Concessions will be open for purchases during the movie. See full movie series here.
Toe Tag Chronicles Writers Event
November 11, 2018 @ 2-4pm; doors open 1:45pm
At this free event, Murder We Write presents “Toe Tag Chronicles” with actual case studies from their resident forensics expert, Jacque Perkins, who will present cases she encountered while working in the NC Medical Examiner’s office. This program will be especially helpful for murder mystery writers, but open to writers of all genres. Held on the second floor of High Point Public Library, 901 N Main Street, High Point NC. Visit www.murderwewrite.org for more information.
Zebulon Farm Fresh Market “Holiday Market”
November 16-17, 2018
Zebulon Farm Fresh Market (ZFFM) reopens for two days in November to provide holiday shopping. Shop for gifts at the Holiday Market with vendors, entertainment, food trucks, and more at the Zebulon Community Center, 301 S Arendell Avenue, Zebulon NC. See ZFFM web page for market hours/schedule each day.
Around The Tables: Monthly Free Clothing+Meal Event
Saturday, November 17, 2018 @ 10am-noon; meal at noon
Free clothing and a free meal, open to all. Clothing available for adults and children. Held once a month as a service to the community. Normally held at Faith Community Baptist Church, 8933 Buffaloe Road, Knightdale NC.
Arkham Author Expo
Saturday, November 17, 2018 @ 2-5pm
Head to Arkham Comix, 3710 Peppermill Drive, Suite F, Wilson NC, and meet local authors, check out books they’ve written, pick up some books for gifts (or yourself), and you can even get the books signed. Support local authors, buy and read local. Joint event with Sovereign Tomorrow Publications. See author names in Facebook event discussion.
The RTP Mistletoe Market
December 13, 2018 @ 4-7pm
The fourth-annual Mistletoe Market returns to The Frontier, 800 Park Offices Drive, Research Triangle Park NC. This holiday market offers holiday shopping from 50 local vendors and artisans. Shoppers may also enjoy complimentary beer and wine. Visit www.rtp.org/event/the-rtp-mistletoe-market.
Event organizers: News site display ads, with a link, are available for a monthly fee. Call 919.637.6973 or email Sales.
To request inclusion of a free or low-fee event, email details to the Editor. Sponsors and logos are not included in Things To Do in NC When You’re Bored listings. Events are added at the editor’s discretion.
Event information gathered from various sources. While attempts are made to verify data, for most events contact details are included. If you’re planning to attend an event, use contact information or event links to confirm, check for updates or changes, or verify space is available. These events are publicized by The Grey Area News, but are not events overseen by this news site or staff.
Highlighted events are selected by staff, generally due to prior experience with the event, knowledge of offerings, or relation to a recent article on this news site.