Upcoming Events in Wilmington, NC

Upcoming Events in Wilmington, NC
Upcoming Events Wilmington NC - Upcoming Events in Wilmington, North Carolina include exciting festivals, concerts, museum displays, social gatherings, holiday festivities, and more. We want YOU to participate and share in the excitement! Take a glance at these upcoming events taking place in Wilmington North Carolina, and start planning your trip to this beautiful coastal city today! Enjoy comfortable Wilmington beach accommodations and take part in all of the wonderful events that Wilmington has to offer. 

Upcoming Events in Wilmington NC - Whether you are searching for delicious dining, family fun things to do, outdoor adventures, beautiful scenery, or indoor activities, Wilmington is the place to be! Enjoy fantastic upcoming local events and activities all year long. 

If you are hosting an event or attending an event this not currently listed on our Upcoming Events page, please tell us about your event today so that we can promote your local event for FREE!

Upcoming events in Wilmington, North Carolina
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Featured Upcoming Wilmington NC Events:



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Enchanted Airlie
December 9-11, 15-22, 2016
A New Hanover County tradition since 2005, guests from around the world have visited Airlie Gardens from Thanksgiving to Christmas to take in the sparkling sights and festive sounds of the season. Guests will experience a 0.5m stroll through the Gardens, on a self-guided walking tour while feasting their eyes on a spectacular array of lights and holiday displays. Also in attendance, Santa Claus himself, and a few local food and beverage vendors with coffee, hot chocolate, popcorn, cookies and more! To ensure your visit to Enchanted Airlie is enjoyable, please read our Enchanted Airlie Guidelines. Tickets often sell out in advance! Click here for additional details.

Island of Lights Festival - New Year Celebration
December 31, 2016 at 9PM
The Island of Lights New Year's Celebration is always held on New Year's Eve and begins at 9PM. The location rotates between Carolina & Kure Beaches. Join us at Kure Beach Ocean Front Park for the 2016 celebration. Don't miss the giant beach ball being dropped at midnight followed by a spectacular fireworks demonstration. This free family-friendly event will feature a DJ and dancing with refreshments and party favors available for purchase. In an Island of Lights tradition there will be a raffle, with the winner taking home the original artwork for the Island of Lights 2015 official Christmas card and ornament. Click here for additional information.
Christmas By The Sea
NOW Through Christmas
Carolina Beach Downtown Initiative Volunteers of Carolina Beach, NC presents the 8th Annual "Christmas by the Sea". The Boardwalk area will be decorated and lit up each and every night during the holiday season starting with the lighting ceremony on November 25th at approximately 7:30PM, proceeding the Island of Lights 'Lighting at the Lake Ceremony'. Activities will be held every Saturday through December 17th from 6:30 - 8:30PM. Enjoy visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, free hot chocolate at the welcome center and free ornament making activities for kids. Click here for additional information.

A Merry Little Christmas Festival at Poplar Grove
December 8, 9, 10, 15, 16 & 17, 2016
A Merry Little Christmas Festival includes special evening hours in which the grounds of Poplar Grove will be lit up and twinkling under the stars, so bring your blankets & chairs, and spend a small part of your evening with us under the stars. A bonfire will be blazing for roasted marshmallows, food and gift vendors for something unique for those stockings, a Santa’s Workshop for those for posting those letters addressed to the North Pole, and maybe even catch Mr. & Mrs. Claus porch sitting, hitch a wagon ride through the Abbey Nature Preserve, or peek inside the Grinch’s Toy Junk Shop in the Blacksmith Studio. Those buckets of coal must come from somewhere for children making the naughty list! Admission is $5.00 per person, 12 and under are free. Click here for more information.

Enchanted Airlie
December 9-11, 15-22, 2016
A New Hanover County tradition since 2005, guests from around the world have visited Airlie Gardens from Thanksgiving to Christmas to take in the sparkling sights and festive sounds of the season. Guests will experience a 0.5m stroll through the Gardens, on a self-guided walking tour while feasting their eyes on a spectacular array of lights and holiday displays. Also in attendance, Santa Claus himself, and a few local food and beverage vendors with coffee, hot chocolate, popcorn, cookies and more! To ensure your visit to Enchanted Airlie is enjoyable, please read our Enchanted Airlie Guidelines. Tickets often sell out in advance! Click here for additional details.

Kure Beach Fantasy Christmas Show
December 9 - 11, 2016
The whimsical Kure Beach Fantasy Christmas Show features a cast of singers, dancers and costumed characters made up of local residents who volunteer their time to warm the hearts and bring a smile to the faces of their audience during the holiday season. Favorite Christmas songs are performed by beautifully dressed ladies and gentlemen or by some of your favorite Christmas characters. It’s fun for young and old, alike! This is a FREE show and open to the public, so you’ll want to arrive early and bring a folding chair in case the seating area is filled. There is a pre-show at 6:30 pm, followed by the main show which begins at 7:00 pm. Click here for additional information.

Island of Lights Festival - Tour of Homes
December 10, 2016
Take a self guided tour through some of Pleasure Island's (Carolina & Kure Beaches) most beautiful homes when they are decorated for the holidays. Enjoy southern hospitality at its best as the owners welcome you into the privacy of their homes for this special holiday treat. The Tour of Homes is always the third Saturday after Thanksgiving and occurs from 4 - 9PM. Tickets will be available at businesses on Pleasure Island including touche' @ 201 N. Lake Park Blvd. Click here for additional information.

Elf the Musical at Cape Fear Stage
December 14 - 15, 2016
ELF The Musical is the hilarious tale of Buddy, a young orphan child who mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts and is transported back to the North Pole. Unaware that he is actually human, Buddy’s enormous size and poor toy-making abilities cause him to face the truth. With Santa’s permission, Buddy embarks on a journey to New York City to find his birth father, discover his true identity, and help New York remember the true meaning of Christmas. This modern day Christmas classic is sure to make everyone embrace their inner ELF. Tickets for this PNC Broadway performance range from $46 - $99. Click here for additional information.

Christmas With The Celts
December 20th, 2016
First there was Riverdance, then Celtic Woman, now the popular PBS Pledge show Christmas with The Celts which is touring across the U.S. Founder Ric Blair credits the group's popularity to their unique blending of Celtic traditional instruments and modern hit songs and sounds: "I'm proud of my Irish/Scottish roots, but I am equally proud of my American music roots. So, our music has become a product of merging the two cultures." Click here for additional information about this Thalian Hall event.

6th Annual Holiday Screening of It’s A Wonderful Life
December 21st, 2016
Frank Capra’s iconic holiday film is a Wilmington holiday tradition, shown as it was meant to be seen: on the big screen. This timeless tale brings back old memories and creates new ones for children and grandchildren alike when viewed in majestic Thalian Hall. Tony Rivenbark’s famous toy collection will be on display with some seasonal treats for the whole family! Click here for additional information about this Thalian Hall event.

Holiday Pops Concert
December 22, 2016
Bring the family as we celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with this sparkling holiday spectacular. Join us for carols and warm your heart with traditional holiday favorites performed by the North Carolina Symphony. Be sure to visit Santa in the lobby before the performance! Click here for additional details and ticket information.

BACCHANALIA: New Year's Eve
December 31, 2016
Celebrate New Year's Eve 2016 at TheatreNOW! BACCHANALIA performances are scheduled for 6PM & 9:30PM. Tickets include a multi-course indulgent tasting meal, party favors, a champagne toast and decadent show with live music that includes fire performers, aerialist and comedy. Tickets are $90, $170 for couples. Seating is 1/2 hour prior to show start. Click here for additional information.

Island of Lights Festival - New Year Celebration
December 31, 2016 at 9PM
The Island of Lights New Year's Celebration is always held on New Year's Eve and begins at 9PM. The location rotates between Carolina & Kure Beaches. Join us at Kure Beach Ocean Front Park for the 2016 celebration. Don't miss the giant beach ball being dropped at midnight followed by a spectacular fireworks demonstration.
This free family-friendly event will feature a DJ and dancing with refreshments and party favors available for purchase. In an Island of Lights tradition there will be a raffle, with the winner taking home the original artwork for the Island of Lights 2015 official Christmas card and ornament. Click here for additional information.

9th Annual Cold Stroke Classic
January 21, 2017
The 9th Annual Cold Stroke Classic will be held January 21, 2017 at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. The course will begin and end at the Blockade-Runner Beach Resort for both divisions. All paddling for the race will be on the Intracoastal Waterway. Racers will have on the water assistance from the Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary and SeaTow. There will also be a "Run what you brung" division in both the races. This can include surfskis, outrigger canoes, unlimited paddleboards, kayaks, etc. If you can paddle it, you can race it. The Cold Stroke Classic benefits Nourish NC which has a mission to fight hunger in New Hanover County, North Carolina. Click here for additional information.


East Coast Shag Classic
January 26 - 29, 2017
The East Coast Shag Classic is an annual fund raising event to support Women of Hope. This charity event is for beach music lovers to shag to the sights and sounds of the greatest beach bands all while enjoying beautiful accommodations with spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and harbor. You can enjoy all of this while helping support women and their families with cancer. Visit the East Coast Shag Classic Facebook page for new about this upcoming Wilmington event.

David Cassidy in Concert
January 28, 2017
David Cassidy has managed to stay at the top of his game for over four decades, with a unique ability to reinvent himself. David rose to stardom in “The Partridge Family” and became the biggest TV and performing phenomenon in history by the time he was 20. In addition to the superstardom he has enjoyed as a singer, songwriter, producer and TV and Broadway actor, David is also an active spokesperson and advocate for Alzheimer’s organization. Enjoy a live performance at Thalian Hall in January 2017. Click here for additional information.

37th Annual North Carolina Jazz Festival
February 2 - 4, 2017
We are eagerly awaiting the 2017 North Carolina Jazz Festival and the world renown jazz musicians who will fill the stage and ballroom air with their music! Over the years, the greatest of Traditional Jazz artists have brought their musical talents here to Wilmington to be a part of this festival. In recent years, the festival has hosted an array of talents from around the nation and the world while introducing some young newcomers to the area as well. The opening night for the 37th Annual North Carolina Jazz Festival will feature world renowned jazz singer, composer, actress and 6 times Grammy nominee Nnenna Freelon and her trio. Click here for additional information about this Wilmington event. 

Rodgers & Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA
February 28, 2017 & March 1, 2017 at 7:30PM
Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA is the Tony Award®-winning musical from the creators of South Pacific and The Sound of Music that’s delighting audiences with its surprisingly contemporary take on the classic tale. This lush production features an incredible orchestra, jaw-dropping transformations and all the moments you love—the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball and more—plus some surprising new twists! Be transported back to your childhood as you rediscover some of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s most beloved songs, including “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible” and “Ten Minutes Ago” in this hilarious and romantic experience for anyone who’s ever had a dream. Click here for additional information and tickets.
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