This weekend is packed with fun family events, from the hip downtown SparkCon to the down-home Harvest Festival at Yates Mill Park.
But the big event that many families look forward to each year is BugFest at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences in downtown Raleigh. From 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, you can see bugs from around the world and taste a few of them.
Local restaurants including The Market and the Wilmoore Cafe will create such delicacies as worm enchiladas and cricket moon pies. Theyll be serving them for free at Cafe Insecta.
There will be a line until they run out of food, said Miranda Wood, educational event specialist at the museum. Thats the thing that everyone looks forward to.
Be prepared to fight the crowds, because organizers expect between 20,000 and 30,000 people to come to the daylong festival.
BugFest will feature more than 100 exhibits inside and outside the museum. You can watch roach and beetle races, learn about beekeeping or see rare and endangered butterflies among many other things.
At 5 p.m., most of the museum closes and Bug Fest becomes a street party with live music, performers, face painting and food.
Museum staff say they hope you and your kids will learn that bugs are not merely annoyances to be squashed or swatted away. They are an important, and amazing, part of our world. Dont just step on them, learn about them, said museum spokesman Jonathan Pishney.
Find more information at bugfest.org.
• Dont let the bugs make you forget about SparkCon, which will take over Fayetteville Street through Sunday.
This festival designed to showcase creativity and the arts, includes more than 200 shows and exhibits and 1,700 artists. Many of them have wild and unique talents you wont see at other arts festivals. Think crazy costumes, parades, scavenger hunts, hula hooping, skate boarding, juggling and much more.
There are too many performances to name, many of which the entire family will enjoy. But you may want to visit the area for kids at the corner of Fayetteville and Davie streets. It will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday.
Find more information at sparkcon.com.
• If you prefer to stay out of downtown Raleigh, try the Harvest Festival from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Historic Yates Mill County Park. Kids can learn about days gone by with exhibits and demonstrations about agriculture, corn milling, hand crafts and more. They can make a cornhusk doll or weave with wheat, listen to live bluegrass and storytellers, and taste foods made with North Carolina agricultural products. More information at yatesmill.org.
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