20 Things to Do in October

This October, soak up the outdoors, savor North Carolina-grown food, enjoy (in-person!) live theater and more in the Triangle.
by Addie Ladner

Museums and playgrounds are open again! Just in time for chillier days, we can visit our cultural institutions again—with modified procedures, of course. A sampling of what’s available: Marbles Kids Museum offers timed entry tickets online (free for members, from $8 for non-members) and early access for members on weekends. The North Carolina Museum of History does not require tickets, but limits visitors and offers hours for senior citizens and guests who are immunocompromised. The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciencesis open with free, timed tickets. The North Carolina Museum of Art  offers timed tickets to the main gallery (free) and special exhibits including Good as Gold: Fashioning Senegalese Women and Leonardo Drew: Making Chaos Legible (from $7.50).

The Well Fed Community Garden

October 1-4: Shop native plants, pollinators, herbs and veggie to satisfy your fall planting needs today through this weekend at the Well Fed Community Garden’s Fall Plant Sale anytime from 9 a.m to 4 p.m. 

October 5-9: Stream the film The New Bauhaus, offered through a partnership between N.C. Modernist and the Chelsea Theater. Register through their site to buy tickets, watch the movie—which follows the design movement from its German origins through its American incarnation—then participate in a Zoom call with producer Alyssa Nahmias on October 9.

October 7: Part of an on-going event, Shred it out at Coastal Credit Union Midtown Park for Wellness Wednesdays with Shred415. Reserve your spot ahead of time (admission is $5) because, in-line with COVID-19 precautions, event attendance is limited to 50 people per session (there’s one at 5:00 p.m and 6:30 p.m) https://visitnorthhills.com/events/wellness-wednesdays-9/

October 8-25: Experience theater in real life again with Burning Coal’s A Hundred Words for Snow, a remarkable story of a 15-year-old girl who sets on an adventure to the North Pole following the unexpected death of her father. The performance will be held at the Murphey School Auditorium for an audience of four people only per performance, with three performances per day. Masks and temperature checks will be required of all attendees. www.burningcoal.org

October 9, 15, 22 & 22: Grab your blanket and your mask and head to the Durham Athletic Park for the Beats and Bars Candid Yams Kickback Movie Experience  an outdoor curated movie experience intended to to help create conversations around Black community and culture. Movies start at 6 p.m, $10 per person, kids under 10 are free.

Orange Crush

October 10: In lieu of its annual fall party, the Beaufort Historical Association is holding a virtual silent art auction of work by award-winning North Carolina artists, which ends October 10. The Association is a non-profit that supports Beaufort’s two-acre historic district, including six authentically restored buildings and the Old Burying Grounds. Keep an eye out for bright watercolor florals, serene waterfront landscapes and more inspired by our state’s organic beauty, like Orange Crush by painter Dee Knott or Trisha Adam’s Soaking up Sunshine.  beauforthistoricsite.org

October 10: Grab your wheels and hit the road to participate in Le Tour de Femme, a women’s only bicycle ride hosted by Grab My Wheel, a local nonprofit that supports cancer research and cancer survivors. To avoid crowds, this is a virtual cycling event, and any pace or distance is allowed on or after the October 10 start day. Whether you want to bike 2,000 miles over 23 days or a leisurely three miles with the kids, consider wearing purple in honor of the event’s 15th anniversary.  $20 to enter; letourdefemme.org

October 10 A trip abroad may not be in the cards this fall, but you can replicate the continental experience closer to home: Europe-inspired Lafayette Village is hosting their 5th Annual NC Wine, Cheese and Chocolate Festival on October 10. Rather than an in-person festival, the “express-style” version will be a drive-through opportunity to pick up a selection of local and regional artisan wine, cheese and chocolate to enjoy from the comforts of home.  Pickup from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.; packages from $32; 8450 Honeycutt Road; lafayettevillageraleigh.com

October 11: We can’t walk together in person, you can still make an impact by participating in the Drive-thruWalk for Hope at the Angus Barn. This fun, family-friendly drive-thru offers participants the opportunity to get a t-shirt, armband, delicious lunch to go, win prizes,  hear local music, and more, all while staying safely in your car! Can’t make it for the DRIVE-THRU this year? Join  virtually instead. It’s more important than ever to support mental illness research right here in our own community. walkforhope.com 

Raleigh City Farm Harvest Dinner, 2018.

October 11, 18 & 25: Raleigh City Farm’s annual Harvest Dinner fundraiser has a new format this year with an “at-home” edition to support the farm, chefs and Black farmers. It’s a four-week series of take-home Sunday dinners featuring celebrated Raleigh chefs from Table Raleigh, Hummingbird Raleigh, Fiction Kitchen and Garland. Paired with estate-grown wines from wine authorities and beer from Fullsteam Brewery and Standard Beer Food, Raleigh’s restaurant scene will come to you. Purchase tickets in advance which start at $75 per meal. https://raleighcityfarm.org/harvest-dinner 

Fresh produce from 4M Farms in Roxboro at the Black Farmers Market NC.

October 11 & 25: In June, the Durham group behind Black August in the Park expanded its bi-weekly Black Farmers Market NC to Raleigh. Taking place at Provident1898 in Durham on October 11 (411 West Chapel Hill Street) and at the Southeast Raleigh YMCA on October 25 (1436 Rock Quarry Road), the open-air market features seasonal produce, eggs and dairy, beauty products and more, with an emphasis on supporting local Black-owned businesses. “The Southeast Raleigh YMCA has been a great partner, and the community has been so welcoming,” says Crystal Taylor, who co-founded the organization. “It’s so fulfilling to see kids getting produce from Black farmers, and to see these businesses thriving as people get to know them.”  blackaugustinthepark.com/black-farmers-market

October 25 & 27 Just in time for Halloween, Raleigh Little Theatre is adding some drama to your evenings. Join local performers as they read radio versions of some of legendary horror writer Edgar Allan Poe’s most eerie stories, including The Masque of the Red Death, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Cask of Amontillado and The Pit and the Pendulum for their Midnight Dreary Festival. Tune in each night for some old-fashioned frights (via newfangled technology) as each story is released one by one.  raleighlittletheatre.org/shows/midnightdreary

October 30: Start your Friday with a little inspiration with Creative Morning RDU’s monthly speaker series. Each month, the organization taps someone from the community—recents speakers have included wellness pros Brit Guerin and Nathan Williams, cartoonist Keith Knight and entomologist Adrian Smith—to speak to a global theme. The virtual event includes networking opportunities, the talk and an opportunity for Q&A with the speaker. For October, the theme is Transportation—but the name of the featured speaker won’t be revealed until a week before the event.  8:45 a.m. creativemornings.com/cities/rdu

And make sure to…

Watch Carolina Ballet and NC Theater’s first live-streamed virtual performance including Principal Ballerina Lara O’Brien doing one last twirl on the big stage. This time, that stage was the Red Hat Amphitheater.  

Start mapping out a few fall hikes to tackle.

Tune into this year’s virtual World of Bluegrass.

Consider a camping staycation on Lake Jordan.

Start planning out your Halloween costume—even if you’re not going very far.

Make a big batch of Cafe Carolina’s melt-in-your-mouth sweet potato biscuits.

Tune in to the Weekend Gardener, now in it’s 35th year