North Carolina is a foodie haven, and what better way to celebrate than a food festival? Luckily, there’s lots to choose from – BBQ, livermush, strawberries, seafood…take your pick and enjoy the fun at one of these 10 festivals.
1. Lexington BBQ Festival, October
As "barbecue capital of the world," it's only appropriate to hold one the most delicious festivals in the birthplace of Lexington BBQ. The festival has been called “one of the top ten food festivals in the USA." With over 100,000 people in attendance, the estimated 12,000 pounds of BBQ served makes sense.
2. NC Seafood Festival, Morehead City
As North Carolina's second-largest festival, this event has been a beloved tradition for 22 years. You won't just find seafood, but musical entertainment, arts and crafts, rides, and an 8k road race.
3. Wilmington Riverfest, October
The Wilmington Riverfest is a three-day festival that brings in almost 250,000 people a year. There are plenty of food and craft vendors, live performances on several different stages, dance competitions, the River 8k marathon, and Saturday night fireworks.
4. North Carolina Strawberry Festival, Chadbourn
Come to the 'Strawberry Capital Of The World' for five days of food, events, parades and floats, and of course...strawberries!
5. The Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival, Charlotte, May
This festival makes pit stops in several cities across the U.S, with Charlotte being its destination come May 7th. The name says it all...sounds like a FUN time!
6. Livermush Festival, Marion, June
Livermush is (safe to say) an interesting food item. But we still have plenty of pride for this Carolina-born concoction. SO much so there's a whole festival held to celebrate it in Marion. Of course, there's lots of livermush - but also a best dressed pig contest, music, a cooking contest, and the famous Livermush Toss. Sounds fun!
7. Twin City Ribfest, Winston-Salem, June
For the ultimate BBQ cook-off, you get an assortment of national BBQ purveyors seeing who makes it best. Luckily, you can be the taste tester. The festival also includes live music and other activities.
8. Taste of Scotland & Celtic Festival, Franklin, June
Everyone knows the Scottish make their mark in North Carolina with the Highland Games...but there's also another Scottish celebration. The festival includes a whole assortment of things - dancing, food, music, border collies (yes), clans, and crafters. It's a unique festival to experience.
9. NC Peach Festival, Candor, July
Candor is the capital of peaches, and what better way to celebrate their sweet deliciousness than by throwing a whole festival? There's a 5k, a peach cooking contest, music, helicopter rides and a skydiving exhibition. Whoa! Fun and 'pretty sweet.'
10. Taste Of The New South, Pinehurst, September
If you want to get a little elegant with your festivals, this culinary event takes place Labor Day Weekend. There are culinary demonstrations, plenty of beer and wine tastings, an oyster roast and a pig pickin.' Yum! Sounds like the perfect weekend to say adios to summer.
Luckily, many of these are coming up in the next few months so you can go ahead and pencil some deliciousness in your calendar. Do you have a favorite festival that made the list or any you’d add?