Editors’ Picks: What To Do in Durham This Weekend

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Enjoy a beer festival at Durham Central Park, explore the American Tobacco Trail, attend an American Dance Festival performance, catch a free Rock the Park concert and so much more this weekend

Durham Parks and Recreation’s Rock the Park, a free monthly series of outdoor concerts and movie nights at community parks, kicks off this weekend at Forest Hills Park with country singer Rockie Lynne.

Compiled by Haley Pineles

BUMP: The Triangle Black Music Month Celebration – Thursday, 5-10pm – Celebrate Black Music Month with BUMP The Triangle at Durham Bottling Co.! Participate in this annual fundraiser and join the DJ party, live jam session and more. All proceeds go toward BUMP’s efforts to make the arts more accessible to youth and families.

Bodytraffic – Thursday, 7pm and Sunday, 7:30pm – The Los Angeles-based dance company performs, kicking off American Dance Festival’s 90th annual season. The company presents an ADF-commissioned dance, “Notes on Fall,” as well as three other works, at the Reynolds Industries Theater. Stay after the show on Sunday for a post-performance discussion!

Indigo Girls with Full Band – Thursday, 7:30pm – This trailblazing folk rock duo has performed together for the past 35 years. Emily Saliers and Amy Ray take the stage at Durham Performing Arts Center along with Nashville-based special guests Rebecca Lovell and Megan Lovell of Larkin Poe.

The Uproar: A Sketch Comedy Show – Thursday, 7:30-9pm – This comedy show features new work from a plethora of young, diverse artists in the Triangle who share wild stories and comical commentary. Inspired by the style of “Saturday Night Live,” this sketch-style show is hosted at Mettlesome Theater and is recommended for mature audiences only.

Public Wild Neighbors + Tour Program – Friday, 11am-12pm – Meet reptiles and mammals native to North Carolina, then head to Piedmont Wildlife Center’s outdoor amphitheater for a short tour to meet the center’s raptors. 

Hello Summer! A Bright Black Body Fragrance Workshop – Friday, 5-7pm – Head to Bright Black in Lakewood Shopping Center for a two-part workshop guided by Bright Black CEO and co-founder Tiffany Griffin. During the event, you’ll learn how to create a unique, custom-designed scent to wear.

Second Annual Two Durhams Beer Festival – Friday, 5-9pm – The Glass Jug Beer Lab partners with Sister Cities of Durham on the second annual festival at Durham Central Park. This year, the event features a recipe swap with Caps Off Brewery, live music and food trucks.

Farm Dinner – Friday, 6pm – Take a short farm tour, visit with goats and mini donkey, Jojo, and enjoy a five-course, locally-sourced meal provided by Elodie Farms chef, farmer and co-owner Ted Domville.

Shane Gillis – Friday, 7pm and 9:30pm – Enjoy an evening of laughs at the Durham Performing Arts Center with this stand-up comic, actor and writer best known for his debut special on YouTube, “Shane Gillis: Live in Austin.”

Rennie Harris Puremovement American Street Dance Theater – Friday, 7:30pm and June 10, 1pm – The acclaimed dance company invites audiences to view street dance through a different lens in the work “Nuttin’ But A Word.” The American Dance Festival performance at Page Auditorium at Duke University challenges audience members’ preconceptions about hip-hop music and Black culture. Bring your kiddos to the children’s matinee on Sunday!

The Monti: Freak – Friday, 8pm – Swing by Fletcher Hall at the Carolina Theatre for a night of storytelling presented by The Monti in celebration of the differences that make everyone unique. 

Angela Bingham w/Jim Ketch Quintet – Friday, 8-10pm – Durham Jazz Workshop presents the talents of jazz vocalist Angela Bingham alongside trumpeter Jim Ketch and his quintet at Sharp 9 Gallery.

Crones of Anarchy – Friday, 9:15pm – Enjoy the all-female trio best known for their funky repertoire of songs, ranging from rock and blues to Americana, on stage at The Blue Note Grill.

Starpath Dance Academy: Dancing Through the Decades – Saturday, 9am, noon, 3pm and 6pm – This 10th annual recital  at the Carolina Theatre’s Fletcher Hall showcases dancers ages 2 and older, as well as adults, in a variety of performances.

Volunteer Wetlands Clean Up – Saturday, 9:30-11am – Join The Glass Jug Beer Lab’s RTP location to help clean up the wetlands behind the brewery. Bring your own work gloves to get down and dirty and head back to the Jug for a fresh beer afterwards!

Restoration Awareness Ceremony – Saturday, 10am-noon – Join the Friends of Geer Cemetery to honor those laid to rest there, learning about the cemetery’s history and more. Ron Bartholomew demonstrates proper monument restoration techniques while Dr. Erica Xavier-Beauvoir and James Stewart walk attendees through the libations and offerings involved in ancestral reverence.

Roots and Soul: Walking with Pauli Murray – Saturday, 10-11:30am – Take a 90-minute tour with Whistle-Stop Tours and the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice to learn about Durham’s history of racial segregation. Aya Shabu of the Durham Arts Council and others share stories about Black Civil War soldiers, the Freedman Schools movement, their own backgrounds and Pauli Murray’s long career of activism. 

Great Trail Day – Saturday, 10am-2pm – The City of Durham, Wake County and the Town of Cary host this special event at the American Tobacco Trail in honor of North Carolina’s 2023 Year of the Trail. Stop at stations along your way down the ATT for trail and pet safety information, free bike maintenance lessons and more. 

Orchard Jazz Park Picnic – Saturday, noon-3pm – Inspired by the Jazz Age Lawn Party in New York, the Mint Julep Jazz Band hosts an afternoon of picnicking, dancing and relaxation at Orchard Park

Durty Dog Market – Saturday, noon-3pm – Stop by Durty Bull Brewing Co. and browse through dog-specific items from local vendors to raise money and spread awareness for Hope Animal Rescue.

Day of Wellness Event – Saturday, 1-3pm – Lifeologie Counseling Durham hosts a community mental health and wellness event at The Leaf in Durham Central Park. Learn about improving your mental health and the services Lifeologie offers through fun activities in this free event. 

Sixth Annual Triangle Community Band Festival – Saturday, 4-6:30pm – Five local bands perform at Durham Central Park during this year’s Durham Community Concert Band festival. The lineup includes the Cary Town Band, the Holly Springs Community Band, the Raleigh Concert Band and The Village Band. Bring your own lawn chairs, blankets and appetites for an afternoon of food trucks and toe-tapping fun!

DIY & Drag Fundraiser – Saturday, 5-7pm – Celebrate Pride month with the LGBTQ Center of Durham and drag queen guests Vandora, Willow and Crystal Spring at Nailed It DIY Studio Durham! On-site art teachers will guide you through a special DIY project between performances. 

Rock the Park – Saturday, 6-8pm – Durham Parks and Recreation brings back this free monthly series of outdoor concerts and movie nights at community parks. This year’s series kicks off at Forest Hills Park with country singer Rockie Lynne. Be sure to bring your own picnic blanket or chair! 

Frankie Alexander – Saturday, 8-10pm – Durham Jazz Workshop presents an evening performance by Frankie Alexander, a Concord native and Durham-based singer who played a large role in the history of the city’s jazz scene, at Sharp Nine Gallery.

Lil Ugly Mane with True Body / Paranoid Maniac – Saturday, 9pm – The prolific Virginia-based rapper is joined with alternative indie and pop band True Body, along with Paranoid Maniac  for an evening of entertainment at Motorco Music Hall

Cosmic Gate – Saturday, 9pm-2am – Join Sugar Society, Morning Choir and Disco Donnie Presents at The Fruit for a celebration of trance music trailblazer and Grammy-nominated musical artist Cosmic Gate. 

Food Truck Rodeo – Sunday, noon-4pm – Head to Durham Central Park to dine from 35+ food trucks, both local and from around the world, and a wide variety of local craft beverage vendors. Bring your own blanket or lawn chair.

World of Whiskey – Sunday, 2-4pm – Sample different varieties of whiskey and learn about the science and history involved in its production during this special class at Mystic Farm & Distillery

Take Flight – Sunday, 2-5pm – AR Workshop hosts a DIY class at Flying Bull Beer Company. Attendees can construct a variety of wooden projects, such as a beer sampler mini tray or a flight rack. 

Pride Month Celebration – Sunday, 3pm – Celebrate Pride month at Tobacco Wood Brewing Co., the first veteran- and female-owned brewery in the state, that co-hosts with social clubs Lez Have Fun and Triangle LGBTQ+ Friends. Enjoy a special performance by Raleigh musician Heather Rogers.

Jake Potter, J Candeed and M. B. Mulkey – Sunday, 5-8pm – M.B. Mulkey kicks off the night at Huron Stage Music Venue and Jake Potter Band follows as the headliner with J Candeed closing out the event.

For even more community events and happenings, visit our online calendar.

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