‘Driving Miss Norma’ – Thursday, 7pm – Tim Bauerschmidt, Ramie Liddle and their dog, Ringo, will be at The Regulator Bookshop for a reading and to sign their new book. When Tim’s mother, Miss Norma, was diagnosed with uterine cancer, she was advised to undergo surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. But instead of confining herself to a hospital bed for what could be her last stay, Norma told her doctor, “I’m 90 years old. I’m hitting the road.” Norma takes off on an unforgettable cross-country journey with Tim, his wife Ramie, and Ringo, and with each passing mile her health improves. This book is the infectiously joyful and charming chronicle of their life on the road – a transformative journey where it is never too late to begin an adventure, inspire hope or become a trailblazer.
Back Porch Music on the Lawn – Thursday, 6pm – This series of free concerts at the American Tobacco Campus continues with exceptional North Carolina-based artists. Headliners Tellico are from Asheville, where they hone their mix of bluegrass and Americana music, and will perform music from their latest album “Relics and Roses.” Skylar Gudasz will open the show and perform songs from her CD “Oleander.” Bring a picnic, a blanket and your dog, and enjoy a great evening of music. Beer and wine will be available for purchase.
‘Finding Neverland’ – Thursday, 7:30pm; Friday, 8pm; Saturday, 2pm and 8pm; and Sunday, 1pm and 6:30pm – Broadway.com’s Audience Choice Award winner for best musical comes to the Durham Performing Arts Center‘s stage. Directed by visionary Tony Award winner Diane Paulus, it tells the story of playwright J.M. Barrie’s struggles to find inspiration until he meets four young brothers and their widowed mother. Spellbound by the boys’ enchanting make-believe adventures, he sets out to write a play that will astound London theatergoers. With a little bit of pixie dust and a lot of faith, Barrie conjures the magical world of Peter Pan’s Neverland, leaving his old world behind for a place where nothing is impossible and the wonder of childhood lasts forever.
May Arts Night – Friday, 5:30-8pm – Julie Anne Greenberg’s “Forecasts and Other Disturbances” debuts at the Durham Arts Council‘s Allenton Gallery, and paintings from MyLoan Dinh’s “Fluid” show in the Durham Convention Center Pre-Function Corridor. Upstairs in the Semans Gallery, the Durham Arts Council School is in the spotlight with “Our House,” an exhibition of student and instructor visual artwork. The celebration of DAC School programs and participants continues in the Pavilion, as music instructors Leslie Nicholas on clarinet and saxophone and Alejandro Santoyo on the piano perform at 5:30. At 7pm, the music students and instructors will take the stage in PSI Theatre for their annual spring concert. There will be family-friendly crafts, light refreshments and a wine bar.
Mel Melton & The Wicked Mojos with John Dee Holeman – Friday, 6:30-9pm – Kick off the Memorial Day weekend with local Cajun/Zydeco blues-flavored icon Mel Melton & The Wicked Mojos at Northgate Mall‘s Music on the Plaza. Durham acoustic blues legend John Dee Holeman opens this free concert. Enjoy food and drinks from food trucks Baton Rouge Cuisine, Esmeralda’s Café, Randy’s Pizza and beer and wine from Bull City Burger and Brewery. Remember to bring a chair!
Audio Under the Stars – Friday, 8-10pm – The Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University kicks off their 2017 season of Audio Under the Stars with “Metamorphosis: Tales of Transformation and Change.” Throughout history, humans have been fascinated by stories of transformation. Fairy tale frogs turn into princes, men morph into wolves and good people become monsters in the blink of an eye. This presentation shows how change can bring new energy and inspirations; it also shows how change can come at a cost. Bring a picnic and a blanket and enjoy an evening of funny, thoughtful, and poignant stories exploring how humans cope with the one thing they can’t control.
The Doughman – Saturday, 7am – The legendary gastronomical quadrathlon returns for its ninth year on Ninth Street. This action-packed culinary tour takes four-person relay teams through the tastes and sights of Durham as they raise money to support the work of the Durham Bike Cooperative. Combining the elements of a triathlon with competitive eating, each team member will devour a delicious treat from restaurants and food artisans including Beyu Caffe, Big Spoon Roasters, The Cupcake Bar, Dain’s Place, Locopops, Lucky’s Delicatessen, Monuts Donuts and Motto. Wear a costume and join the fun!
Memorial Day Remembrance at Bennett Place – Saturday, 10am-4pm, and Sunday, 10am-3pm – Bennett Place State Historic Site presents “The American Soldier Through the Ages.” Living historians will represent American soldiers from different time periods throughout our nation’s history, showcasing the uniforms and weapons they used. This year marks the centennial of America’s entrance into WWI, and there will be a special display honoring this anniversary. In the afternoon, there will be a soldier’s parade to the unity monument for a wreath-laying ceremony and recognition of our veterans. America has a rich history of selfless acts of bravery and sacrifice beginning with the American Revolution and continuing to the present day, and Memorial Day is a time to remember the price that so many men and women have paid for the freedoms we treasure.
Pop-Up Market – Saturday, noon-6pm – Durty Bull Brewing Company hosts its first pop-up market. They will be pouring their creations inside the taproom while local artisans and craftspeople display their wares both inside and outside the brewery. Vendors will include BullCitySoapWorx, Cotton Creek, Durham Toffee, Brandy’s Soy Candles and Tilthy Rich Compost. Grab a bratwurst from Carrboro food truck Merry Franksters and enjoy a bluesy performance by Andy Coats beginning at 3pm.
‘The Seagull’ – Saturday-Monday, 6:30pm – Bartlett Theater is proud to present this play by Anya Reiss. Directed by Jonathan Bohun Brady, audiences have the unique opportunity to experience this performance as an outdoor production at an historic farmhouse near the Eno River State Park. The play is staged at various locations throughout the property, and the audience will travel with the actors as the story unfolds. Anton Chekhov’s work was hugely inspiring to Anya, and her radical new comedic adaptation carries the original spirit while delving into the mysteries of the human condition and exploring the beauty and tragedy of human feelings. Bring a picnic or pick up some barbecue at nearby Picnic before the show and enjoy an evening of outdoor theater with your family. There will also be a performance on Saturday, June 3.
Movies in the Park – Sunday, 9pm – Durham Cinematheque and Durham Central Park‘s first presentation of the year is “Sputnik at Sixty.” In 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1, the first “artificial moon” and the first satellite to orbit the Earth. Newsreels of this event are combined with footage of other events from that year, including anonymous home movies, other newsreel stories, and bits and pieces of cinematic flotsam and jetsam. The show includes a tribute to Robert Goddard, the father of rocketry. Come early and bring a picnic as well as chairs or a blanket. Admission is free and donations are encouraged.