If the weather cooperates, take a step outside this weekend and look up: the Leonid meteor shower typically peaks around November 18. Accordingly, there’s a free drop-in skywatching session Saturday in Raleigh. Elsewhere, Santa comes to Durham, a coding program for kids comes to Marbles and “The Nutcracker” comes to Fletcher Opera Theater.
▪ Stop by Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh Saturday between 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. for free skywatching with Morehead Planetarium staff and volunteers. They’ll provide the telescopes, you provide the warm clothing and curious children. Young skywatchers will need to remember to look with their eyes and not their hands, as even a slight touch could smudge a lens or nudge a telescope out of focus. Register and learn more at tinyurl.com/hx46f4d.
▪ Santa Claus is coming to the center court at Durham’s Northgate Mall. His grand entrance and parade is at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, immediately followed by an 11 a.m. ornament-making workshop with the Durham Arts Council. Santa is available 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday and 1-6 p.m. Sunday (through Dec. 24), with photo packages for sale. For Northgate’s full holiday schedule, visit northgatemall.com.
▪ Carolina Youth Ballet’s performances of “The Nutcracker” are Saturday at 1 and 5 p.m. at Fletcher Opera Theater in Raleigh, with a percentage of sales going to the Make a Wish Foundation. The later show is sold out, though $17 and $22 tickets to the 1 p.m. ballet were still available at press time. Visit triangle-academy-dance.com.
▪ Kids can explore coding’s fun applications at Marbles Kids Museum’s Kids Code event Saturday. Between 1 and 4 p.m., Marbles STEM Play Corps will introduce children to programming and coding with robots, mazes, binary code bracelets and kid-friendly apps. Marbles is open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and admission is $5, with kids under 1 getting in free. Visit marbleskidsmuseum.org.
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