photograph by Revival Photography

Feature Image: Ashe County Bluegrass & Old-Time Fiddlers Convention • Jefferson • July 25-27

Celebrate High Country heritage and sharpen your musical talent at the 50th anniversary of this convention. Attend bluegrass jam sessions and test your skills in individual instrumental and band competitions at Ashe County Park. Those who are less competitive can dance the night away at the Appalachian Barn Dance located in the Lakeview Shelter. Attendees can also snack on concessions and participate in arts and crafts.

Learn more: (336) 846-2787 or


Majesty Over Water! • Lake Glenville • July 2

Watch a fireworks show over the lake to celebrate the Fourth of July. Viewers can enjoy the display from the shore or a boat.

Learn more:

Independence Day Celebrations • Lake Junaluska • July 3-7

Participate in a week of patriotic activities at the Lake Junaluska Conference & Retreat Center. Listen to music by Balsam Range and the Lake Junaluska Singers, enjoy a picnic, and watch a parade, fireworks, and a show by Imagine Circus.

Learn more: (800) 222-4930 or

Family Fun Fourth of July Parade and Festival • Banner Elk • July 4

Kick off Independence Day with a parade on Main Street, and then spend the day downtown listening to live music, participating in sack races, and purchasing snacks from vendors.

Learn more: (828) 898-8395 or

Fourth of July Fireworks • Sylva • July 4

Celebrate freedom by watching fireworks light up the sky in downtown Sylva. Before the show, listen to live music by the Carolina Soul Band, one of the state’s most nostalgic R&B groups, and enjoy food and fun activities.

Learn more: (828) 586-2155 or

Fireworks on the Green • Cashiers • July 5

Pack a lawn chair and blanket for a massive fireworks display at The Village Green. Before the show begins, enjoy food, music, dancing, and other activities.

Learn more: (828) 743-3434 or

U Rang Durang? • Hendersonville • July 5-7, 12-14

Watch this comedic play about the twisted lives of two families at the Hendersonville Community Theatre. Christopher Durang combined the plots of two one-act plays for this production.

Learn more: (828) 692-1082 or

July 4th Festival • Blowing Rock • July 6

Celebrate Independence Day a couple days late in downtown Blowing Rock with games at Memorial Park, live music, the Main Street parade, and fireworks.

Learn more: (828) 295-5222 or

Highland Games • Grandfather Mountain • July 11-14

Colorful Scottish culture will come to Grandfather Mountain for the 64th year. Experience traditional Scottish sports, Highland melodies and crafts, and Celtic cuisine.

Learn more: (828) 733-1333 or

TGIF: Summer Concert Series • Morganton • July 12, 19, 26

Grab a chair or a blanket and spend your Friday nights listening to local musicians on the Historic Burke County Courthouse lawn for free. A selection of food, vendors, and beer and wine options will be available.

Learn more: (828) 438-5252 or

“Street to Studio: Graffiti Art & Fine Furniture” • Asheville • July 13

Attend a reception for this exhibit by local artist Neil Carroll at the Grovewood Gallery. Carroll’s work will be displayed through August 18.

Learn more: (828) 253-7651 or

Songwriters Showcase • Hayesville • July 13

Listen to local singer-songwriters perform their original works at the Peacock Performing Arts Center. Local musician Rob Tiger will host this 28th annual event.

Learn more: (828) 389-2787 or

Art in the Park • Blowing Rock • July 13

Meet local artists and purchase their work at this show on Park Avenue. Admission and parking are free.

Learn more: (828) 295-7851 or

Summer Storytelling Retreat & Adventure • Asheville • July 14-20

Spend the week at StoryWindow Productions learning about storytelling, story listening, and community and supportive exploration, and receive teller coaching from storyteller expert Connie Regan-Blake at this workshop. Explore Asheville during your free time and enjoy performances from guest artists.

Learn more: (828) 258-1113 or

Joy Garden Tour • Cashiers • July 17-21

If you’ve got a green thumb, this event at The Village Green is right up your alley. Listen to guest speakers, shop for garden-related merchandise, and tour a variety of private gardens.

Learn more: (828) 258-1113 or

Alleghany County Fiddlers Convention • Sparta • July 19-20

Perfect your picking skills at the Alleghany County Fairgrounds. Even if you don’t own a fiddle, come on down and listen to the jam sessions, dance with friends, and sample food from a variety of vendors.

Learn more: (336) 372-4957 or

Laura Boosinger and Josh Goforth • Shelby • July 20

Listen to this duo sing beautiful harmonies and play old-time, folk, and swing music during a concert at the Earl Scruggs Center.

Learn more: (704) 487-6233 or

Dulcimer U Summer Week • Cullowhee • July 21-26

Adult students are invited to spend the week attending dulcimer concerts, group recitals, classes, and jam sessions at Western Carolina University.

Learn more: (828) 227-7397 or

Guided Personal Retreat • Lake Junaluska • July 22-24

Spend a few days relaxing and renewing your spiritual life through group centering sessions, evening prayer services, personal reflection time, and an individual spiritual direction session with spiritual directors and clergy members. Attendees can structure their retreat to fit their needs.

Learn more: (800) 222-4930 or

Charity Horse Show • Blowing Rock • July 23-28, 31-Aug 4

Watch competitors complete courses in the Hunter/Jumper I and Hunter/Jumper II divisions at the Broyhill Equestrian Preserve, which is adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Learn more: (828) 295-4700 or

Designer Show House • Cashiers • July 24-Aug 4

Renowned decorators and designers in the Southeast will take over a home in the community for a week to display their talents and transform the space with their expertise. Throughout the week, participants can attend a variety of designer workshops, book signings, and panel discussions from creatives across the country.

Learn more: (828) 743-7710 or

Symphony by the Lake • Blowing Rock • July 26

Sit by Chetola Lake, surrounded by the Blue Ridge, and listen to a performance by the Symphony of the Mountains, conducted by Cornelia Laemmli Orth, at the Chetola Resort.

Learn more: (828) 295-7851 or

Front Country • Elkin • July 26

This band learned how to play roots music in a San Francisco dive bar. After practicing bluegrass jams in the East Bay area, they forged their own sound. Enjoy a concert from this group, now based in Nashville, at The Reeves Theater & Café.

Learn more: (336) 258-8240 or

Tour of Homes • Blowing Rock • July 26

Tour some of Blowing Rock’s special and private homes. Many homes provide a historic glimpse in the city’s old treasures. This tour has been hosted annually for 61 years by volunteers with St. Mary of the Hills Episcopal Church. Proceeds from the tour will benefit local charities.

Learn more: (828) 295-7179 or


Antiques Festival • Denton • July 2-6

Find a vintage treasure or sell a stash of forgotten items at Harrison Park.

Learn more: (336) 859-4231 or

Fourth of July Festival • Archdale • July 4

Get in the patriotic spirit by riding carnival rides, listening to live music, playing knockerball, and watching a fireworks show at Creekside Park.

Learn more: (336) 434-7314 or

“Stars & Stripes” • Winston-Salem • July 4

The Salem Band will honor veterans in this patriotic concert by playing standards like “Yankee Doodle” and a tribute to the armed forces. The Winston-Salem Pops Chorus will join the band for this free concert at Salem Square.

Learn more: (336) 413-2180 or

“Stepping Into the Craft” • Seagrove • July 6, 13, 20, 27

Participating pottery shops in Seagrove will host a variety of free demonstrations, such as wheel throwing, carving, and raku firing.

Learn more: (336) 517-7272 or

Exile • Liberty • July 6

In 1978, the band Exile became well-known thanks to their song, “Kiss You All Over.” Since then, the group has earned the title of “America’s Longest-Running Band.” Enjoy a performance by Exile at The Liberty Showcase Theater.

Learn more: (336) 524-6822 or

The Summer Concert Series Presents: Steve Owens & Summertime • Asheboro • July 7

Dance to live beach music and enjoy this eight-member band’s free, family-friendly concert at Bicentennial Park.

Learn more: (336) 626-1240 or

A Tribute to Jimmy Buffett • Carthage • July 13

The Landsharks, a band that opened for Jimmy Buffett in concert numerous times, will perform at the Copper Ford Dealership. Proceeds from the concert will benefit the nonprofit Meals on Wheels of the Sandhills.

Learn more: (910) 365-9890 or

Celebrate Liberty Festival • Liberty • July 13

Spend the afternoon downtown listening to live music from three stages and snacking on food from vendors, and conclude the evening with a fireworks show.

Learn more: (336) 622-4276 or

Cantaloupe Festival • Ridgeway • July 13

Cool off with some juicy cantaloupe at the Ridgeway Festival Grounds. Enjoy Brunswick stew and hot dogs, browse historical displays, and participate in arts and crafts and horseback rides.

Learn more: (252) 213-0429 or

PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD: A Food and Art Party • Greensboro • July 13

Explore your crafty side and watch still-life painting demonstrations, carve a vegetable, and enjoy a Bicycle smoothie at this “pay what you wish” event at the GreenHill Art Gallery.

Learn more: (336) 333-7460 or

Bright Star • Chapel Hill • July 18

The Paul Green Theatre will host this Grammy-nominated musical about a North Carolina woman at two different points in her life — in the 1920s and ’40s. The play is inspired by real events.

Learn more: (919) 962-7529 or

A Comedy of Tenors • Davidson • July 18-21, 25-28

In this play, it’s 1930s Paris, and producer Henry Saunders is strenuously working to ensure that Italian superstar Tito Merelli delivers the concert of the century. Enjoy this show, produced by the Davidson Community Players, at the Duke Family Performance Hall.

Learn more: (704) 892-7953 or

Farmers Day • China Grove • July 20

Celebrate the hard work of Rowan County farmers at this event. Attendees can browse antique tractors and agriculture-related displays. Free activities for kids, food, live music, and a fireworks show will also be available for participants to enjoy.

Learn more: (704) 857-2466 or

Summertime Brews Festival • Greensboro • July 20

Beer lovers will gather to taste more than 400 local and international brews at the Greensboro Coliseum. Food trucks and live music will also be at the event. Proceeds benefit local animal rescue and foster programs.

Learn more:  (336) 274-2282 or

Eck McCanless Pottery Anniversary Celebration • Seagrove • July 20

Watch potters demonstrate turning multiple colors of clay on a wheel, and enjoy refreshments at Eck McCanless Pottery. Help the shop celebrate eight years of creative business.

Learn more: (336) 873-7412 or

Downtown Seagrove Potters Present: Christmas in July • Seagrove • July 20-21

Come to the pottery capital of America for a weekend of self-guided gallery tours, refreshments, and demonstrations of pottery making, and then chat with Mr. and Mrs. Claus.

Learn more: (336) 707-9124 or

“Local Color” • Hillsborough • July 22-Aug 25

Browse expressive paintings by Michele Yellin, mixed-metal jewelry by Nell Chandler, pottery by Evelyn Ward, and a textile collage by Ali Givens in this exhibit at the Hillsborough Gallery of Arts.

Learn more: (919) 732-5001 or

Greenhill Summer Camps “Café Monet” • Greensboro • July 22-26

Bring your fourth, fifth, or sixth grader to GreenHill Art Gallery for a week of artistic adventure. Campers will make art with watercolor, tempera, and acrylic paints. Campers will also study famous artists such as Van Gogh, Monet, and Picasso.

Learn more: (336) 333-7460 or

The Mountain Goats & Hiss Golden Messenger • Durham • July 24

Celebrate the 30th anniversary of Merge Records at a concert featuring these NC-based indie-rock artists. The concert is part of a multiday music festival at the Carolina Theatre.

Learn more: (919) 560-3030 or

Sisyphus Saturday • Trinity • July 27

Listen to live music on the flagstone terrace at Zimmerman Vineyards as part of the winery’s summer Saturday music series. Enjoy a wine tasting with a Goat Lady Dairy cheese tray, or bring your own picnic.

Learn more: (336) 861-1414 or

“Play On!” • Winston-Salem • July 30

The oldest, continuous mixed wind ensemble in the country, Salem Band, will play an evening of music selected by fans in Salem Square. Some of the music selections include Shenandoah’s 1812 Overture and local favorite Morning Star Polka. Bring a lawn chair or blanket to this free concert and enjoy snacks from food trucks on site.

Learn more: (336) 413-2180 or



Lorikeet Landing • Kure Beach • July 1-31

Play with colorful lorikeets at the Lorikeet Landing exhibit at Fort Fisher’s North Carolina Aquarium. If you’re daring, you can feed the birds from your hand or head.

Learn more: (910) 772-0500 or

Beach Day • Oak Island • July 1

Kick off a patriotic week with a little fun in the sun. Build a sandcastle, play horseshoes and volleyball, and then enjoy evening entertainment near the Middleton Park Agriculture Extension office.

Learn more: (910) 457-5578

Maritime Movie: Wild Caught • Beaufort • July 2

Learn about the lives and struggles of families employed by the commercial fishing industry in this movie at Beaufort’s North Carolina Maritime Museum.

Learn more: (252) 504-7740 or

“Endangered Community: The Independent Waterman Project” • Hatteras • July 2

At the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, browse the latest work of photographer Daniel Pullen, which examines the daily struggles that fishermen and -women experience.

Learn more: (252) 986-0720 or

North Carolina Fourth of July Festival • Southport • July 2-4

For more than 200 years, Southport has gone all out to celebrate America’s birthday. The tradition continues this year with several flag ceremonies, a salute to veterans, a car show, concessions, and fireworks.

Learn more: (910) 457-5578 or

Independence Day Celebration • Surf City • July 3

Gather your friends and family at Southside Park for a day filled with live music, food, and fireworks over the Intracoastal Waterway.

Learn more: (910) 328-4887 or

Fireworks Show • Kill Devil Hills • July 4

Bring a blanket and snacks for a Fourth of July fireworks show on the beach. Fireworks will be launched from the Avalon Pier.

Learn more:

Independence Day 1850 at Island Farm • Manteo • July 4

Experience what the Fourth of July would have been like in 1850 by playing musket-fire games and reading the Declaration of Independence at Island Farm. Guests can also bring a picnic lunch to enjoy in front of the historic farmhouse.

Learn more: (252) 473-6500 or

Fireworks • Nags Head • July 4

Join the Town of Nags Head for its annual fireworks show on the ocean pier at milepost 11.5 on NC Highway 12.

Learn more: (252) 441-5508

Ocean City Jazz Fest • North Topsail Beach • July 4-7

This annual musical showcase celebrates jazz legends and up-and-coming greats. Enjoy performances, music workshops, yoga classes, craft beer and wine tastings, and a variety of food.

Learn more: (910) 259-1278 or

Airlie Gardens Summer Concert Series • Wilmington • July 5, 19

Bring your lawn chair and picnic basket to listen to live music at Airlie Gardens. The set list will be eclectic — a blend of reggae, rock, and bluegrass. Craft beer and wine will be available from Front Street Brewery and Noni Bacca Winery.

Learn more: (910) 798-7700 or

Tarboro Market • Tarboro • July 6

Shop for fresh, local produce, vintage and antique trinkets, and baked goods at this summer market held at Tarboro Brewing Company.

Learn more: (252) 563-6522 or

Painter’s Studio • Greenville • July 10

Children ages 6 to 12 can join this four-week class at the Jaycee Park Center for Arts and Crafts to explore different media, including drawing and painting.

Learn more: (252) 329-4567 or

Wright Kite Festival • Kill Devil Hills • July 13-14

Watch huge kites soar at this 41st annual festival at the Wright Brothers National Memorial. Fly your own kite, take a free lesson, and get creative at the kite-making station.

Learn more: (252) 441-4124 or

Historical Walking Tour • Wilmington • July 20

Tour Oakdale, one of North Carolina’s oldest cemeteries, with Eric Kozen. Attendees will learn about the cemetery’s creation, view funerary art, and hear stories about those buried there.

Learn more: (910) 762-5682 or

Hurricane Preparedness • Southport • July 29

State and national agencies will gather at the Southport Community Building to share information with locals on how to prepare for a hurricane. Some of the information that officials will go over includes preserving important documents and heirlooms and protecting your house against approaching storms.

Learn more: (910) 477-5151 or

NC Watermelon Festival • Murfreesboro • July 31-Aug 3

Sink your teeth into some delicious melon, participate in the parade downtown, or compete for the title of Watermelon Queen at this 34th annual festival.

Learn more: (252) 398-7695 or

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