Yes, it’s spring – the season has become an annual marker for all things in bloom and on the horizon during Durham’s warmer months. These are, however, a list of once-yearly bombshell events Durham is host to in May that are sure to make a lasting impression on you well after the seasons change.
Once a year, do it here
Are you feeling like a trot around urban landscapes in your best and brightest athletic wear? Tutus, sequined socks, and grumbling bellies abound at Durham’s 10th Annual Doughman Quadrathlon on May 5, and seeing is most definitely believing. Spectate or participate in running, biking and swimming events, stopping for meals from local restaurants along the way.
Year three of Moogfest in Durham takes place May 17–20 this year, boasting a lineup of the most captivating international innovators in the electronic-music sphere. The unforgettable festival is filled with daytime panels, workshops, and evening concerts. If the southern blues genre is more your scene, those chords are best enjoyed in the company of craft beer and food trucks at the Durham Blues & Brews Festival on May 19.
Round out a magical month with the ACC Baseball Championship at ACC FanFest in the Bull City over Memorial Day weekend (May 22–27). Cheer on the home team Duke University Blue Devils at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, and hit your trip to Durham out of the park with our suggestions on adventures to get into between innings… all within a home-run distance from the diamond.
Embrace Culture Like a Local
When Durham means y’all, they most certainly mean all – which proves that a true foray into the fabric of the Bull City requires a deep dive into our cultural circles. Get swept up into Durham’s diversity at a cultural celebration this month.
Launched in 2017, the City of Durham celebrates our eclectic tapestry of inhabitants with an afternoon of free music, activities and community education at Durham Refugee Day, this year on May 5. Local refugee residents share both their voices and cultural cuisine from their international places of origin. Simultaneously, the Durham Greek Festival takes place May 5 and 6 and is host to delectable Greek food and pastries, traditional music and folk dance performances – all at St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church.
Before rounding out your festival tour, eat with purpose at Chefs for Change on May 14. Your evening of fine dining will be guided by chef Scott Howell of Nana’s restaurant, with proceeds of the event benefiting Families Moving Forward, a non-profit organization supporting families experiencing homelessness.
May 19 marks the date of the Bimbé Cultural Arts Festival, which celebrates African and African American history, culture, arts and traditions through dance, music, cuisine and the arts, as well as natural health and beauty offerings.
Enjoy a Front Row Seat to the Sights, Sounds, and Flavors of the Bull City
Be it Downtown Durham, the Five Points District, North Durham or sprawling farm scapes on the outskirts of the city, the venues are numerous, but the experiences are unique. The same nationally-acclaimed performing arts center that will soon bring Hamilton to Durham will also serve up Waitress the Musical from May 1–5, so make DPAC a stop on your route through the city.
Where urban meets locally grown fun, adventures await. Try the Meet the Animals Hux Family Farm event on May 6, where self-guided tours and cuddle sessions with goats, sheep and other livestock abound. Then, there’s the tour of Downtown Durham’s galleries, art studios, shops and restaurants, all to the sounds of live music from 6–9pm at Third Friday Durham on May 18.
Local 22 Kitchen and Bar will partner with Trophy Brewing in Raleigh for their final spring beer dinner to pair craft beer and brew education with fresh, locally-inspired dishes; don’t miss the Trophy Brewing Beer Dinner on May 30. If you have room, keep the delicious party going at the Dynamic Duos Eat and Drink Night at Museum of Life + Sciences on May 31. Attendees 21 and older are invited to discover the science behind spectacular food and beverage pairings with the help of local restaurants, breweries, and wineries.
…And that’s just May folks. Check for more events in May in Durham...