Fall is just around the corner (how is it already September?) which means that, along with cooler weather, so are everybody’s favorite Durham festivals, along with a few new ones. Here is the 14 you can’t miss, sorted chronologically.

Foster St Festival for Arts Entrepreneurship

September 14, 2019 @ 8:00 am to 6:00 pm at Foster Street, Durham, NC

A team of Durham Central Park District arts organizations is hosting a celebration of arts entrepreneurship on September 14th in Durham Central Park District. The Artisan Market at 305, Cecy’s Gallery, the Art Market Durham, the Durham Craft Market, and Cricket Forge will host an arts festival that day as part of the Durham 150 Celebration. The event will celebrate 30 years of arts entrepreneurship in the Durham Central Park/Downtown District. The festival will honor how Durham’s supportive community has been an integral part of each individual’s story and has contributed to their success.

More information

Beats n Bars Concert 2019

September 14, 2019 @ 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm at Beats n Bars Festival

BnB curates a diverse mix of performances from some of the best artists in Hip Hop locally and nationally. The lineup represents a variety of styles and showcases the dynamic range of Hip Hop music. The festival showcases are both a recognition of artists making their mark and a celebration of the contributions from established trailblazers. 


Enjoy 1 full day of music, food, coding class, tech tour, and interactive labs! Festival-goers can expect to be actively engaged and increase their understanding of new ways to display and celebrate hip-hop with while establishing a space that fosters a broader glance into and understanding of how science, technology, education, and music intersect with Hip Hop culture.

More information

Photo @jtecreates

45th Annual CenterFest Arts Festival

September 21, 2019 @ 10:00 am to 6:00 pm at Durham Arts Council

CenterFest is back for its 45th annual art-focused festival! Attendees can expect the best visual artists from near and far, music, dance, and more from local performers. Kids will have a blast at the Creative Kids Zone, food vendors will keep guests fueled for fun. It all takes place in the heart of Durham’s historic downtown.

More information


September 21st | 6 to 10pm | Liberty Arts | $25, 21 and up

918 Pearl St will be the place to come for beer and cider from local breweries, food prepared for the season and, of course, s’mores made by you over Liberty Arts’ own fire pits.

Need some entertainment? Watch your date dancing to fabulous music by local classic rock band Wyde Open and our good friend Alec Ferrell with his mad DJ skills. Feeling creative? Design and create your own Autumnal Tiara at the Tiara Table. Seriously, where else are you going to find this kind of fun?!?

NC Jerk Food Festival

September 21, 2019 @ 11:30 am to 7:30 pm at West Point on the Eno

Celebrate Caribbean culture and Jamaican food at the NC Jerk Fest on Saturday, September 21st, 2019, from 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., at West Point on the Eno Amphitheater, 5101 N Roxboro Rd, Durham. Bonus: it’s free and family-friendly.

More information

Art of Cool Festival

September 27th-29th, 2019 in Downtown Durham

The Art of Cool Festival is celebrating its 6th year this September 27-29th in downtown Durham, North Carolina. A remix of a Black American Music festival, AOCFEST 2019 fuses forward-thinking Jazz, alternative Soul and Hip Hop greats over the course of a dope, culture-filled weekend. The mission of Art of Cool is to expand the audience for jazz, while championing innovative thought around music and culture. This year’s Art of Cool Festival will feature Run DMC, Jill Scott, Ari Lennox, Whodini, Black Violin, Omar, DJ Skillz, and Durham’s own 9th Wonder and many more to be announced!

More information

Pride: Durham, NC 2019

September 28 at Duke University East Campus

Pride: Durham, NC serves as the annual celebration of community, family, pride, and activism in Durham and across the state. Pride: Durham, NC will take place Saturday, September 28, 2019 on Duke University’s East Campus at 1304 Campus Drive. The festival is from 11 AM to 4 PM.

More information

Phoenix Fest

October 5 | Free | Fayetteville Street

Phoenix Fest is back on Saturday October 5, for its 18th year as Durham NC’s funkiest street music festival to celebrate the cultural legacy of the historic Hayti community and to deliver a fun-filled day of family-friendly entertainment for thousands on historic Fayetteville Street.

Celebrate all that’s great and wonderful about Durham’s African American culture by participating in the Phoenix Fest Parade.  Enter your church, organization, band, step team or business and show your Bull City pride.

Phoenix Fest is fun, it’s free and it’s for the whole family. And it’s handicapped accessible.

Festival of Nations

October 12 | 11 am- 4 pm | Duke Homestead 

Come have fun and share in the culture of Tanzania, England, Greece, Russia, Japan, China, Mexico, Costa Rica and Romania. Activities include:

  • Children’s Activities with the Scrap Exchange
  • International Foods
  • Raffles, Silent Auction, Art, Souvenirs, Door Prizes
  • Exhibits of the Cultures of Durham’s International Communities
  • International Dance & Music Groups
  • International Beer Garden

Admission is $5. Children under 12 are free

World Beer Festival

October 19 | Durham Bulls Athletic Park | Tickets $40-75

Get a tasting glass with unlimited 2oz tastings from over some of the finest beers and ciders! Access into the Art of Beer Experience for beer ingredient samplings, pairings, educational seminars, a mini commercial brewery and more!

With VIP access, get a bonus selection of rare and unique beers, and a VIP lounge with air conditioning and real bathrooms.

Duke Homestead’s Halloween Phantasmagoria

Photo: Duke Homestead

October 25 | 6:30-9pm

Phantasmagoria, noun: a bizarre or fantastic combination, collection or assemblage; a dreamlike state where real and imagined elements blur together; a magical event at Duke Homestead on October 25.

Explore historical concepts of Spiritualism, awe, and wonder from the 19th century at Duke Homestead. You are invited to wander the property to see what wonders you can find. This will be unlike any other Halloween experience you will have!

Appropriate for all ages. (No experiences are designed to scare!) 

$10 plus tax per adult in advance, $15 plus tax at the door. $5 plus tax for kids 12 and under

Bike-a-Bull City Festival

October 26 | 9 am- 2 pm

Choose from three rides that all end at noon at Durty Bull, followed by family-friendly celebrations! Followed by food, drink, socializing and activities like a bike maintenance workshop, tire changing contest, raffle prize drawing, and tables from local bike-related vendors and supporters.

Goat Kid Festival- Halloween on the Farm

October 27 | 1-5 p.m. | Prodigal Farm | $5 per car

Just a short drive away in Rougemont, you can tour the 95-acre Prodigal Farm and milking parlor, play with the wee goats, meet the milking does, and taste nationally award-winning cheeses.

Come as your favorite animal — or as a farmer for Halloween!  Stay for goat story time. The Humble Pig food truck will be serving food, Mystery Brewing Company will be serving beer.


October 26 | 3-6pm | Durham Central Park

Join Durham Parks and Rec. for an afternoon of doggone good times at Durham Central Park. Local celebrity judges will determine the winner of the costume contests, and you can enjoy treats from local food trucks and brewers while watching canine attendees show off their wooftastic tricks.

Celebrate Halloween at West Point on the Eno | Oct 31  

Designed particularly for children ages 12 and younger, this special event features campfire stories and songs, hayrides, treats, crafts, games, and face painting. No need to register – just come out, rain or shine!

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