Weekend at a Glance: Shopping, Shows and Shimmering Lights

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Kick off December with a variety of holiday-themed events, virtual concerts, pop-up markets and more this weekend!

weekend festivities at Museum of Life and Science
Enjoy the holiday lights at the Museum of Life and Science every weekend in December. Photo courtesy of the Museum of Life and Science

Compiled by Sarah Rollins

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.

Holidays in The Park – Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 5:15-9:30pm – Museum of Life and Science invites families to celebrate the holidays by taking an evening stroll on shimmering pathways throughout the garden, Farmyard, Dinosaur Trail and the 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. 

Therapeutic Goat Yoga – Friday and Saturday 11:30am-12:30pm – Hux Family Farm invites yogis of all levels to participate in a therapeutic yoga class with more than 25 trained therapy goats and sheep. Instructors will lead participants through a yoga flow that is mostly on the ground, while goats and sheep wander around eating, cuddling and playing. 

Main Street Holiday Open House – Friday and Saturday, noon-7pm – Head over to Main Street for some holiday shopping from Bungalow, Exotique, Letters Bookshop and Dolly’s Vintage. There will be a raffle with a combined prize from all four shops. Additionally, the shops will collect nonperishable food donations for PORCH Durham.

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.

Race 13.1 Durham – Saturday, 7:30am – The sixth annual holiday-themed half-marathon,10K and 5K returns this year. With North Carolina’s mild winter temperatures, this December race will be a great way for any runner to close out the fall race season and stay focused on training through the Thanksgiving holiday.

Holiday Shop & Coffee Pop Up – Saturday, 9am-1pm – Presented by Vert & Vogue and The Durham Hotel, this shopping extravaganza includes treats from Escazu Chocolates, giftable accessories from Show & Tell, Indian and Middle Eastern-inspired ice creams from Elaka Treats, and coffee and cookies from The Durham’s executive pastry chef Kelsey LeGaux. Proceeds from The Durham’s peppermint mocha benefit NC FIELD and its work supporting farmworker families in eastern North Carolina.

Al Strong & Trio – Saturday, 11am – As part of its Family Saturday Series, The Carolina Theatre presents this jazz trumpeter and his dynamic ensemble as they demonstrate how beautiful melodies are constructed. The free, livestreamed performance provides an in-depth look at what makes a group of musicians sound like one. 

Ciderworks Holiday Market – Saturday, 1-5pm – Bull City Ciderworks hosts a popup market at the cider bar with hot mulled cider and food from Arepa’s House food truck. The lineup of local vendors includes: Bites of Sam, Gypsy Women Soap Co, Frankey Creations, Two Crafty Gals Studio, Hollow Grove Designs, Leigh Ann’s Crafts, Belna Candle Company and The Upcycled Sweater Lady.

Living Arts Dancewave in Durham Central Park – Saturday, 1:15-4:15pm – Living Arts Collective hosts this interactive experience in Durham Central Park, providing a chance to listen to local music, appreciate live art and dance, and eat and drink with community members from local vendors like Vegan Flava Cafe and homebucha. Sign up on the website to register.

Bull City Reels of Wheels – Saturday, 5:30pm and 8:30pm – Reserve tickets for either drive-in movie showing of “Home Alone” at Durham County Memorial Stadium, hosted by Durham Parks and Recreation. The movie will be accompanied by a variety of on-site food trucks offering food and desserts. 

Christina & Michelle Naughton, Piano Duo – Saturday, 8pm – Duke Performances presents sibling piano duo Christina and Michelle Naughton as part its Virtual Fall season. The identical twins are known for their technical mastery and bring a variety of captivating four-handed pieces to the series. Tickets holders will receive a unique Vimeo link to livestream the performance. 

Open-Air Holiday Market – Sunday, noon-5pm – Come out to Elodie Farms for this event, designed to provide a safe, outdoor holiday shopping experience for customers and fellow small business owners. Vendors will be situated on the grounds around the main farmhouse and approximately 30-60 feet apart from one another. The total area around the main farmhouse is approximately a half-acre. Vendors include jewelry, pottery, art, body care products and more.

Handel’s Messiah: Part I – Sunday, 4pm – Duke Chapel goes virtual with its annual performance of George Frideric Handel’s “Messiah.” This year’s online program will blend arias and recitatives with virtual singalong choruses created from recordings of last year’s concert. The online program will include all of Part I – the Christmas portion – plus the “Hallelujah” chorus. Tickets are free, but donations are encouraged. 

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