From foodie fests to live music and everything in between, the Triad has it all. Families with young children will enjoy events like the annual Carolina Classic Fair, while young adults can look forward to fun summer music festivals like downtown Winston-Salem’s Summer Music Series.
Festive annual holiday events include the Holiday Market and Downtown in December in Greensboro, Winston-Salem’s Christmas by Candlelight tours and Jaycees Holiday Parade, High Point’s annual Holiday Festival Parade, and Kernersville’s Spring Folly and Christmas Parade. Other holiday events include Halloween pet parades, St. Patrick’s Day bar crawls and more. Discover a few of the Triad’s best events and festivals below.
Creativity is our jam – literally. Music festivals range far and wide across the Triad, where you can jam out to jazz at the John Coltrane International Jazz & Blues Festival in High Point or Downtown Summer Music Series in Winston-Salem, enjoy rock classics at Gears and Guitars in Winston-Salem, or sample different genres at Still The Days Music Festival in Greensboro. Join 150,000 other attendees at the annual NC Folk Festival, a three-day outdoor festival of multicultural music, dance, crafts and food.
More interested in visual arts than music? We’ve got plenty of that, too. The six-day National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem celebrates black filmmakers and actors, the Crafts Fair in Winston-Salem displays handcrafted items from over 100 vendors, Greensboro’s Art in the Arboretum features local artists and their work in a beautiful garden setting, and High Point’s Day in the Park offers entertainment, arts and crafts, food and more. Meanwhile, local art museums are constantly updating their calendars of events – browse our Arts & Culture page to learn more.
Cultural and international events include Winston-Salem’s International Village Food and Music Festival, High Point’s Latino Heritage Festival and multicultural celebration Hi-Fest, Greensboro’s UNCG International Festival, Wake Forest’s World Cultural Festival and more. Winston-Salem’s annual Greek Festival is a celebration of the Greek community, with food, music, dancing, a market and cooking demos. Check out Greensboro’s OUT and About calendar for information about LGBTQ+ events, like yoga sessions, game nights, parades, running groups, drag queen shows, fundraisers and more. Wake Forest Innovation Quarter at Bailey Park has a constant rotation of community events, including crafting, cooking and cocktail classes, food truck festivals, yoga, fundraisers, farmers markets and more.
Far and wide in the Triad, you’ll find a community that’s passionate about food. With classic Southern dishes like shrimp and grits in addition to modern influences, creative collaborations are constantly springing up – and these foodie festivals can’t wait to show off their creations. Among North Carolina’s top food festivals, The Barbecue Festival, is held annually in Lexington, NC with over 160,000 in attendance, while the NC Annual Food Truck State Championship is held in Randleman, NC.
The Greensboro Food Truck Festival offers 60 food trucks with a variety of cuisines, along with entertainment and kids’ activities. The annual High Point Food Truck Rodeo shakes up the community with a variety of cuisines and activities for families. The iconic annual Lexington Barbecue Festival draws attendees from far and wide to sample the best North Carolina barbecue. Seasonal festivals that show off the region’s farm fresh produce include the Autumn Leaves Festival in Mount Airy, Yadkin Valley Pumpkin Festival and Apple Fest in Winston-Salem. Spirits of Summer and the North Carolina Wine Festival, held annually at Tanglewood Park in Winston-Salem, offer tastings of the best spirits and wines in the state, along with live music and food.
With a large network of local colleges and universities in the NC Triad, you’ll find plenty of sporting events – with school spirit to match. Catch a UNCG Spartans baseball or basketball game, or a High Point Panthers soccer match. Don’t miss the homecoming football game at North Carolina A & T, along with their weeklong “Aggie Pride” celebration, proving why they have the “Greatest Homecoming on Earth.”
For professional sports, catch the Wyndham Golf Championship, among the most anticipated events of the PGA Tour, each year in Greensboro. The Greensboro Coliseum Complex consistently plays hosts to national sporting events, including NCAA Men’s Basketball tournaments, ACC Basketball tournaments, and the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, which will be held there in 2020. Baseball fans can catch two Minor League teams – the Winston-Salem Dash and the Greensboro Grasshoppers – in the heart of downtown Winston-Salem and Greensboro, in addition to the High Point Rockers at BB&T Point ballpark.
Looking to check something off your personal bucket list? The Triad offers opportunities to run 5K, 10K, half-marathon or marathon races all year round. Explore different options like High Point’s Carolina Brewsfest Half Marathon and 5K, Greensboro’s Cannonball Marathon and the Main Street Half Marathon of Mocksville. If you’d rather hit the green than go for a run, High Point’s golf courses are on par with professional-grade facilities, especially the Blair Park and Oak Hollow courses. Read more about all things sports-related in Greensboro here and Winston-Salem here.
Even the smallest communities throughout the NC Triad unite each year for a common celebration. Each year, 40,000 attendees convene in Andy Griffith’s hometown of Mount Airy, NC to celebrate Mayberry Days. In Liberty, what began as a small antiques market set up in a field has blossomed into one of the Southeast’s largest antique festivals with over 400 dealers from 25 states. Denton welcomes 36,000 people annually to the Southeast Threshers’ Reunion, a celebration of farm heritage and history, while Candor, a small town of just 800 people, welcomes more than 15,000 annually for the NC Peach Festival.