10th Annual St. Nicholas European Christmas Market ~ Dec. 9

Experience a piece of the wonderful Christmas Markets of Europe in Raleigh! The St. Nicholas Market features food and gifts from Poland, Ukraine, Germany, Slovakia, the British Isles, Scandinavia, and Italy. Shop for matryoshka nesting dolls, Polish pottery, Czech crystal, vintage ornaments, hand carved wood gifts, ornaments, cashmere scarves from Scotland, and so much more you won’t find anywhere else.Enjoy traditional baked goods and foods, beer and mulled wine, old-fashioned caroling, Irish Step Dancers, The Little German Band, children’s activities, and even a visit from the real St. Nicholas.

Holiday Open House at the N.C. Executive Mansion ~ Dec. 9

North Carolina’s Executive Mansion, the “people’s house,” will open its historic doors again for its annual Holiday Open House. Visitors are invited to tour the home, take in the decorations, and enjoy seasonal musical entertainment by local performing groups. The first floor of the mansion will be decorated with North Carolina-grown Christmas trees, floral and mixed evergreen arrangements and ornate mantle displays.

The Magic of African Rhythms: BalanKora: A Harvest of Memories ~ Dec. 10

The Magic of African Rhythms shares the beauty and spirit of Kwanzaa through music and stories. The sounds of the balan and kora – griot instruments from West Africa – reconnect audiences to distant traditions. Kwanzaa is a seven-day festival that celebrates and teaches about the Seven Principles (Swahili: Nguzo Saba) of African culture which contribute to building and reinforcing family, community, and culture among African American people as well as Africans throughout the world African community. These values are unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity, and faith.

Explore Dorothea Dix Park – Skywatching: The Geminid Meteor Shower ~ Dec. 13

Join staff and volunteers from the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, Chapel Hill Astronomical and Observational Society, and the Raleigh Astronomy Club to view the Geminid Meteor Shower of 2017!

Bring a blanket, sleeping bag or reclining chair and watch for Geminid Meteors to streak across the sky! Telescopes will be set up for you to take a closer look at star clusters, galaxies and nebulae. There’ll also be sky tours and star storytelling!