Brrrr!  Between snuggling up with your littles and sipping on your favorite mug of hot chocolate grab your coats and head out to explore the wintry fun happening in and around Raleigh this January.  From nature hikes to astronomy nights to sledding and snow tubing fun we’ve gathered up our favorite activities that all ages can join. Open up your calendars and use our list of January Family Fun to plan your next memorable outing.

Don’t forget to attend our KidDilly Expo on Saturday, January 21st at the Hilton Garden Inn in Cary from 10am – 2pm…..a free day of games, activities, demonstrations, entertainment and more. Get your FREE tickets here. 



January Family Fun Happening In & Around Raleigh

(Disclaimer: Visit the website or call ahead to the venue you’ll be visiting.  Due to inclement weather events can be canceled or rescheduled.)

Frozen Over  

Runs until January 29th.  Museum of Life & Science, Durham

Winter indoor fun is back again! Don your favorite socks and come skate in a 400 square foot synthetic ice rink, little ones can enjoy the “Icicle Forest” composed of 800 suspended foam pool noodles and big kids can create their own custom “icy” shelter with foam blocks. Every Tuesday-Saturday at 11am and 4pm join the giant pom-pom “Snowball Fight”. FREE exhibit with admission.

Kids with Special Needs Event at Jumpstreet 

January 7th. 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.  Jumpstreet Trampoline Park, Cary

Every first Saturday of the month Jumpstreet hosts a semi-private event for children with special needs and their families.  Cost: $8 for ages 4 years and up. $4 for ages 3 years and under.

Natural Explorations:  Rock Hounds Park Tour  

January 7th.  11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh

FREE program for all ages.  Explore the rocks of Yates Mill on “Old Rock Day”. Hike the mill dam to discover geologic foundation and discover how rocks have been used in milling grains thousands of years ago. Registration is required.

Soar!  The Hero Pigeons of WWI  

January 7th – March 4th.  Performed by Raleigh Little Theatre’s Storytellers to Go!

FREE program for ages 5 years & older. Enjoy this short play commemorating the 100th anniversary of the United States entering WWI on April 6th, 1917, by the retelling of the true story of Cher Ami, a carrier pigeon who became a war hero. The story is told from the pigeons’ perspective. Raleigh Little Theatre will be performing Soar! at Halle Cultural Arts Center of Apex and various Wake County Public Library locations. Check here to see dates and time of performances.

Ice Raleigh  

Runs until January 29th.  City Plaza, Downtown Raleigh

There’s still time to enjoy some family time on the ice this winter.  Come out to Raleigh’s only natural ice outdoor skating rink. Cost: $10 (includes admission and skate rental). $5 for kids 4 years and under.

Weekend Family Friendly Tours: Let’s Dance  

January 7th-8th, 14th-15th, 21st-22nd, 28th-29th. 10:30 a.m.  NC Museum of Art, Raleigh

Every Saturday & Sunday families with kids ages 5-11 can explore forms and figures in art that wiggle, twirl, and move! Join in the fun—and see how your own fancy footwork compares. A Museum guide will lead a lively discussion with activities in the museum gallery.

Skywatching at Jordan Lake  

January 7th.  6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  Hosted by Morehead Planetarium at Jordan Lake, Apex

FREE program for all ages. Peek through telescopes, take a laser-guided “star tour” of the night sky, learn where to look for major constellations and listen to legends told by ancient cultures about constellations. Astronomers will be available to answer all your astronomy questions.

Nature Tots:  Seasonal Discoveries  

January 9th.  10:00 a.m. – 10: 30 p.m.  Harris Lake County Park, New Hill

For ages 1-3 years with an adult. Discover what is out and about seasonally in the park. Enjoy hands-on nature activities, stories, games and more all while experiencing the natural world and the critters that live in it. Cost: $2 per child. Register in advance.

N.C. Chinese Lantern Festival  

Runs until January 15th.  6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.  Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary

Bring your camera & visit these larger than life lanterns made up of over thousands of LED lights. This annual festival of lights also brings in cultural performances & entertainment that every age will enjoy. Venue food and beverage stands will be open selling snacks.



Time for Tots:  Let It Snow!  

January 10th. 10:00 a.m.- 10:45 a.m.  NC Museum of History, Raleigh

For ages 3-5 years with an adult.  Before we had electricity or central heating, what winter activities were fun? Find out, then get ready for cold weather by making your own snowflake! Cost: $3 per child. $1 for Associates/Museum members.

Nick Bruel with New Bad Kitty Children’s Book at QRB  

January 10th.  7:00 p.m.  Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh

For ages 5 years & up. The author, Nick Bruel, will be introducing his new book, Bad Kitty Takes the Test during his visit to QRB.  Come laugh and be entertained as he reads some of Bad Kitty’s hysterical antics.  Don’t forget to come back to QRB on January 21st for the WAKE Up and Read Book Drive kickoff.

Field School:  Animal Tracks & Signs  

January 11th.  10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh

For ages 7-14 years. Learn to read the tracks and signs animals leave behind as you hike around the pond. Find out what animals are eating, where they are going and what they’ve been up to. Register in advance. Cost: $8 per child.

History Corner:  Let’s Celebrate!  

January 11th. 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  NC Museum of History, Raleigh

For ages 6-9 years with an adult. Discover New Year’s traditions – and taste foods – from around the world and here in N.C. Register in advance. Cost: $3 per child. $1 for Associates/Museum members

Nature Stories:  Welcoming Winter  

January 11th.  1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Blue Jay County Park, Raleigh

For ages 3-5 years. Learn how different animal groups deal with the winter cold. Bring your coat for this outside adventure. Parents and children will enjoy stories and activities during this program. Register in advance. Cost: $4 per child.

History Hunters:  New Year’s Eats  

January 11th.  11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.  NC Museum of History, Raleigh

For ages 10-13 years. Hopping John? Grapes? What foods ring in the New Year for you & your family? Try some celebration treats from here – and far away – and share some of your year-starting stories.  Register in advance.  Cost: $3 per child. $1 for Associates/Museum members.

Iron Chef Kids Night Out  

January 13th.  6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  Flour Power Kids Cooking Studio, Cary

This interactive all hands-on class will have lil’ chef’s using their big imagination. Kids will be given a secret ingredient and will compete with their teammates to create a dinner item and dessert from Flour Power’s secret ingredient. Register in advance. Cost: $39 per child with dinner included. Check out the Manners Matter Etiquette Course every Thursday from January 26 – February 16.  Don’t forget to register for the Superbowl Party Kids Night Out on January 27 from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., too.

Astronomy Nights  

January 13th. 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.  Wilkerson Nature Preserve, Raleigh

For ages 5 years and up with an adult.  Learn what’s happening in space with an indoor presentation and (weather permitting) outside activity viewing the moons, stars, and planets with the preserve’s telescope. Register in advance. Cost: $2 per person.

Full Moon on the ATT  

January 13.  5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.  American Tobacco Trail, Apex

For all ages.  The moon is full and the trail beckons! Warm up with some hot cocoa then take a short hike to listen for the creatures of the night as we enjoy the brisk winter air. Bring a water bottle and dress for the weather with good walking shoes. Meet at the New Hill Parking Area by the picnic table, 1309 New Hill-Olive Chapel Road, Apex, NC 27502.

Teen Science Café:  Mission Update  

January 13th.  5:30 p.m.  Morehead Planetarium, Chapel Hill

FREE program for ages 13-18 years. Teen Science Cafe’ allows teens to connect with other teens who like science and talk with a scientist about their work.  Tony Rice, NASA Solar System Ambassador, will update the group on missions to Jupiter, Saturn, Mars and more. Pizza will be served before the program.

Park Tales:  A Mitten for a Home  

January 13th.  4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.  Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh

FREE program for all ages.  Listen to Jan Brett’s classic The Mitten, a whimsical story about a young boy, his white mittens and the woodland creatures he encounters. Learn knitting history and make your own paper snowflake. No registration required.

Science Olympiad Showcase  

January 14th.  9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh

FREE event for visitors.  Participate in Science Olympiad-themed activities and presentations throughout the day such as Amazing Mechatronics, Hovercraft Testing, Codebusters, Fast Facts, Duct Tape Crafts and much more.  During the day the Museum is hosting 30 N.C. middle and high school Science Olympiad teams and offering them an opportunity to participate in practice events.

Town of Cary’s MLK, Jr.  DREAMFEST 2017 

January 14th – 16th

Come celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with this annual weekend of events with storytelling from two well-known local African-American storytellers, Willa Brigham and Donna Washington, a Poetry Fest, Diversity Summit, featured documentary – Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise, and a Day of Service where families can give back to their community by helping to maintain and beautify the area around Middle Creek Community Center. (Register in advance for the Day of Service 2017 – Demonstration Participation.)

Raleigh Repticon & Exotic Animal Show  

January 14th – 15th.  State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

Have a reptile fan at home? Repticon is back showcasing your favorite reptiles from Bearded Dragons, Geckos, Iguanas and more. Tickets can be purchased online.

Rolling Sculpture: Art Deco Cars from the 1930’s & 1940’s  

Exhibit runs until January 15th.  NC Museum of Art, Raleigh

There is still time to see these 14 automobiles & 3 motorcycles whose sleek & streamlined design will make for a memorable outing. Cost: $13 for ages 7-18 years. $19 for adults. Free for Members.

PineCone Kid Jam  

January 15th.  2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

Finger picking, toe-tapping bluegrass for young musicians and music enthusiasts. Check out the three ways your little ones can get involved during this program from bringing your own instrument, making a scrap-instrument or Circle Up!

Dream Big Book Drive  

January 16th.  1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Durham Central Park

In celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr Day come out to this annual book drive.  Round up your gently used books and bring them to the event and enjoy the fun activities & entertainment scheduled for the day.

Community Heroes Day at Marbles  

January 16th.  9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Special activities from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.)  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

Celebrate community heroes on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  From 10am-2pm, meet real community heroes like a paramedic, teacher and police officer, and BE a hero too! Pack food for Backpack Buddies to provide healthy food for kids in need and make blankets for hospitals and shelters with Project Linus – Wake County Chapter.

Nature Peekers: The Snowy Day  

January 17th.  10:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  Blue Jay County Park, Raleigh

For ages 18 months – 3 years with an adult. Listen to the story The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats about a little boy’s adventures in the snow.  Explore fun snow crafts and more. Register in advance. Cost: $2 per child.

FREE Tuesday Morning Movies  

January 17th.  10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (Doors open at 9:30 a.m.)  Halle Cultural Arts Center, Apex

FREE program. Grab the kids, snacks, blankets and enjoy your favorite movies on the big screen! Call 919-249-1120 one week prior to event for movie title or sign up to be on their email list at

Recreational Adventures:  A Poppin’ Good Time! 

January 19th.  3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.   Historic Yates Mill County Park, Raleigh

For all ages. Celebrate National Popcorn Day at Yates Mill! Learn about different varieties of corn and what gives popcorn that unique POP. Take part in a creative popcorn-themed craft and enjoy some fresh popped popcorn. Register in advance. Cost: $1 per person.

Garden Gourmet:  Presto! Pesto Party   

January 19th.  4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

It’s a pesto party at Marbles! Throw in some basil, cheese if you please, add olive oil and presto! You have pesto. No prior cooking experience required.

Family Nature Night – Figuring Our Fossils!  

January 19th.  7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  Marsh Community Center, Raleigh

Have fun digging for fossils and learning how paleontologists sort through their finds. We will see and touch fossilized bones, sea creatures and more. Games and activities will delight the fossil seeker who is young or young at heart. Everyone will create a fossil replica to take home. Preregistration is required four days prior to the program. Registration code: 197551. Children must be accompanied by an adult; fee applies to adults and children. For more information, call the Nature Program at 919-996-6856. Cost: $3 per person.

KidDilly Expo 

January 21st.  10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Hilton Garden Inn Raleigh-Cary, Cary

FREE event for the entire family. Squeeze some summer into your January and come play with premier Western Wake camps, birthday party venues, services, entertainers and more.  Families will encounter fun demonstrations, games, activities, giveaways all highlighting local businesses and organizations that serve Western Wake families.  Register to get your FREE tickets.

Snow Day 2017.  Waverly Place, Cary

January 21st.  11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Snow Day is back again bringing the fun of sledding on man-made snow for the entire family.  Get your tickets early to come play in the snow!  Cost: $8

Hobey Ford’s Golden Rod Puppets – Animalia   

January 21st.  2:00 p.m. – 3:45 p.m. & 4:00 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.  Halle Cultural Arts Center, Apex

Internationally award-winning puppeteer Hobey Ford breaks out of the traditional puppet booth, turning the whole theater into a performance stage. Watch the metamorphoses of a butterfly, a tadpole, a soaring eagle, a school of fish, ecological systems and endangered animals all come to life at this family-friendly performance.  Cost: $6.  Don’t forget to start your Saturday off with Halle’s SuperFun Saturday, too.

Holly Springs Winter Farmers Market 

January 21st.  8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.  Holly Springs Cultural Center.

Bring your family out to stock your pantry and enjoy a winters market. From maple syrup, fresh ground coffee, artisanal cheeses, local honey, scratch made granolas and so much more.  Check out the vendors that will be participating here.

Family Science Olympiad  

January 21st.  1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

Grab your family for a friendly competition in the sport of science! Build rockets and pasta bridges. Investigate forensics, explore meteorology and get curious about animal adaptations. In partnership with the North Carolina Science Olympiad.

Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood  

January 21st. 2:00 p.m. & 5:30 p.m.  DPAC, Durham

Come enjoy the legacy of the beloved “Mister Rogers” with this PBS Kids favorite. Daniel and all of his friends are hopping aboard Trolley to the land of Make-Believe ready to delight audiences.

Marbles Princess Tea  

January 21st & 22nd. 10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. or 2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum of Raleigh

Fairy dust and sparkling crowns, enchanted wands and princess gowns… children and their grown-up are invited to join Marbles for A Princess Tea. Dress in your most elegant gown, take part in magical activities and enjoy delightful treats with a princess. Pre-registration is required for both children and grown-ups. Registration required. Tickets can be purchased online.

Walkin’ Through the Winter Pines  

January 21st.  1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.  Harris Lake County Park, New Hill

Family program for ages 6 years up. Take a wagon ride to the Longleaf Pine Forest and hike out to explore the beauty of the winter woods and observe birds and other signs of wildlife in the Longleaf. Dress warm, bring a water bottle and binoculars. Register in advance. Cost: $1 per person.

DogGoneFast Flyball Club Flyball Tournament   

January 21st & 22nd.  Holshouser Building at State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

FREE admission for spectators. It’s time for Flyball dog racing! Watch this family-oriented dog sport that has become a hit on Animal Planet and ESPN’s Great Outdoor games. Dogs teams will jump hurdles, catch balls and more.

TET Festival (Vietnamese New Year Celebration)  

January 22nd.  11:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  Scotts Building at State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

Vietnamese American Association of Raleigh presents its annual cultural celebration with cultural foods, vendors, martial arts demonstrations and traditional musical performances. Cost: $8 for ages 13 years and older.  $5 for 7-12 years, Free for 6 years and under.

Skate with the Canes  

January 24th.  6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.  (Doors open at 5:30 p.m.)  PNC Arena, Raleigh

Meet and skate with Hurricane players, take part in autograph & photo sessions, check out the locker room, take home a poster & aluminum water bottle, enjoy food and a beverage and much more. Proceeds benefit the Kids ‘N Community Foundation. Cost: $75 per ticket.

Egg Drop Engineers  

January 25th.  10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. & 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.  NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh

Minimum age is 10 years old. Kids can engineer their own capsule for a fragile piece of equipment (an egg) and dropping it from a height of several meters.  Register in advance. Parents do not have to attend the lab with their child but do need to remain in the Museum. Cost: $10 per participant

Family Fun Night: A Special Night for Special Needs 

January 25th.  5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

FREE event exclusive for children with special needs and their families. This after-hours event for children with special needs offers the opportunity to experience Marbles in a calmer, quieter environment.

Family Wildlife Series:  Look Whooooo’s Talking!   

January 27th.  6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.  Blue Jay County Park, Raleigh

For ages 5 years and up. Enjoy a night group night hike prowling the woods listening for owls. Register in advance. Cost: $1 per person.  Check out Loose as a Goose another Family Wildlife Series event on January 28.

Winter Wonderland  

January 27th & 28th.  Bond Park Metro Park, Cary

Bring your family out to enjoy snow tubing at Bond Park, where Snow My Yard will blow snow on the big hill for all to enjoy. Register early. Limited spaces available. Cost: $18 per person for ages 5 years & up (single rider session). $18 per pair for parent-child session.

16th  Annual African-American Cultural Celebration 

January 28th. 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.  NC Museum of History, Raleigh

FREE event. Join the statewide kickoff to Black History Month with more than 75 musicians, storytellers, dancers, chefs, historians, playwrights, authors, artists, reenactors, and more.

Extreme Weather & Energy  

January 28th.  10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.  Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

Come out and play at the Extreme Weather Playstation and meet guest meteorologists from ABC11. Report the weather with the ABC11 pop-up studio and green screen.  Explore the science behind electrical energy and circuits, light energy, green energy and more with guest experts from the community and Marbles STEM Play Corps.

Chinese New Year Celebration  

January 28th.  10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  State Fairgrounds, Raleigh

Celebrate the Year of the Rooster with Chinese and Asian cultural performances, exhibits, food, arts & crafts, vendors and more. Cost: $5 advanced ticket. $8 at door. Children 6 and under are free.

Monster Jam  

January 28th & 29th.  PNC Arena, Raleigh

Bring your bigs & littles to the most action-packed live event on four wheels.  Family entertainment featuring monster trucks – Max DTM, El Toro Loco, Monster Mutt and much more.

Astronomy Days  

January 28th.  9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  January 29.  12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.  NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh

FREE program. The Museum has partnered with NASA and the Raleigh Astronomy Club to help families learn about our Universe. Enjoy comet crafts, solar observing, lectures, rocket launches and more. This year’s theme is the “Sun and Stars”.  Don’t forget to check out the new exhibit, The Secret World Inside You!

Special Themed Toddler Time! – Winter Wonderland with Elsa, Anna, and Olaf 

January 29th. 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.  Sky Zone, Raleigh

For ages 4 years and younger with an adult. Jump, play, make crafts and have a healthy snack with your favorite characters from FROZEN! Purchase tickets online.


Come see us at the KidDilly Expo on Saturday, January 21st at the Hilton Garden Inn in Cary from 10am-2pm.  Enjoy games, performances, activities and more all compliments of premier family-friendly businesses that serve the Western Wake area and beyond. Get your FREE tickets here and check out what businesses will be showcasing at the KidDilly Expo.


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