Get into the holiday spirit with your family this weekend with a variety of themed events, virtual performances and hands-on activities!
Compiled by Aashna Shah
Winter Wonderland Online Auction – Through Dec. 15 – The Durham Arts Council hosts this virtual auction to benefit its Annual Arts Fund. Buyers can bid on art pieces, health and wellness classes, getaways and more. The winning bids and donations will assist local artists and organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
NCMOH Jazz Series: Nnenna Freelon: Concert with Conversation – Thursday, 7-8:30pm – Join the Grammy-nominated vocalist and Durham–based artist and her accompanist for an intimate, informal program that explores some popular music of the 1940s – and some from the current day. This is the first evening of a virtual jazz concert mini-series presented by the North Carolina Museum of History. An email containing a Zoom link will be sent to all registrants an hour before the program begins.
Mini Christmas Market – Thursday-Saturday – Bar Virgile hosts this weekend-long event on its outdoor patio. The bar will serve Glühwein (warm spiced wine), bratwurst and sauerkraut, play Christmas movies and music, and even have some fun gifts for sale. The market will stay open every week in December. Be sure to socially distance and wear your mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
‘A Christmas Carol’ – Thursday-Sunday – Theatre in the Park’s annual performance of “A Christmas Carol” will be streamed virtually this year due to COVID-19. Ira David Wood III’s musical comedy adaptation of the Dickens classic has been performed since 1974; though the format may be different this year, “the meaning is still the same,” as the Lamplighter in the production says.
Winter Wonder Walks at American Tobacco – Through December – American Tobacco Campus strings up its lights again this year – perfect for a socially distanced walk, a festive photo op and a unique outdoor dining experience.
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: Return to the Worksite – Thursday, 2pm – Go Triangle hosts a discussion with Dr. John Staley, director of outreach and continuing education at the UNC Gillings School of Public Health, on the basics of infection prevention and control in the workplace. The event will also cover how businesses can successfully reopen amid the COVID-19 pandemic as well as host a discussion on how employees can protect themselves and their families when at work.
Holidays in The Park – Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 5:15-9:30 pm – Museum of Life and Science invites families to celebrate the holidays by taking an evening stroll on shimmering pathways through the garden, Farmyard, Dinosaur Trail and Magic Wings Butterfly House. Attendees are also encouraged to buy tickets for an illuminating train ride on the Ellerbe Creek Railway to see colorful light displays.
Holiday Cards and Calligraphy – Thursday, 6pm-8pm – Abra Millsaps teaches calligraphy basics at Crafts and Drafts NC. She’ll go over modern techniques and help participants make some beautiful holiday cards!
The Streetery – Friday and Saturday, 5-9:30pm – Downtown Durham Inc. opens multiple streets in the center of downtown to pedestrian traffic, with festive lights, music and performers. The Streetery runs every Friday and Saturday through Dec. 19. “This is our way of welcoming folks to a safer, socially distanced, outdoor downtown experience,” Nicole J. Thompson, Downtown Durham Inc. president and CEO says.
West Point History Tours – Saturday and Sunday, 10-11am – Take a guided tour of West Point on the Eno‘s historic buildings and grounds, which are decorated for the holidays. When visiting the West Point Mill, McCown-Mangum House and Hugh Mangum Museum of Photography, guides will share stories about the people who lived, worked and played there.
Gingerbread House Decorating – Saturday, 10-11:30am – The Travelling Cafe presents a hands-on kids (ages 8-13) decorating class with Chef Leslie Chartier. While parents shop at For Garden’s Sake, Leslie teaches kids how to decorate a gingerbread house with an endless selection of festive goodies. Once finished, the kids can take their masterpieces home.
Therapeutic Goat Yoga – Saturday and Sunday, 11:30am-12:30pm – Hux Family Farm hosts a not-so-average yoga class with trained, cuddly goats. The farm includes more than 25 goats in the class (often babies) to optimize goat interaction for every participant. Instructors will lead participants through a yoga flow that is mostly on the ground, while goats and sheep wander around eating, cuddling and playing.
The Hip Hop Nutcracker – Saturday, 7pm – A supercharged cast, including hip-hop pioneer MC Kurtis Blow, performs a contemporary dance spectacle set to Tchaikovsky’s timeless music. The live capture, filmed as a part of a partnership with PBS, will allow returning and new guests to experience this show at home since theaters still remain closed. It’s available to livestream for DPAC audiences this holiday season.
Durham Craft Market Holiday Fair – Sunday, 10am-4pm – Get some local holiday shopping done by shopping small and supporting artisans and makers at Durham Central Park. Meet your local artists and find out how they make their craft.
‘Jagged’ Live in NYC: A Broadway Reunion Concert – Sunday, 8pm – The Broadway cast of the 15-time Tony Award-nominated musical “Jagged Little Pill” performs live in NYC for one night only. In the spirit of the #SaveOurStages movement that was created during the pandemic, this event supports venues all over the nation, including DPAC, that are experiencing revenue loss during this time of suspension for live arts.