‘American Idol’ chanteuse Kimberly Locke will take to the stage of the Lincoln Theater July 28 at the annual Crape Myrtle Festival.
RALEIGH — Like its namesake, the annual Crape Myrtle Festival (CMF) is a vibrant, dynamic entity that has thrived in this most oppressive of climates. The Festival supports North Carolina organizations that assist people living with HIV/AIDS and the gay, lesbian and transgender communities through celebration and outreach. Started in Wilmington as a small gathering among friends in 1981, today the Crape Myrtle Festival is held in the Triangle area and is the oldest AIDS-related fundraiser in the Southeast.
Just last year the festival raised $40,500, surpassing the previous year’s total by $11,000, with funds going to Alliance of AIDS Services, UNC Hope Fund, EqualityNC, Chatham County Social Health Network, El Centro, Duke AIDS Research Team, the Lesbian Resource Center, SWOOP and Duke Legal AIDS Fund.
Through its diverse yearly events, grand gala and individual donations, the festival has raised over one million dollars for more than 30 service agencies statewide.
This year, the Festival will celebrate its 27th anniversary on July 28 at the Lincoln Theatre. “Classic Crape Myrtle: Rewind the Past, Pause to Remember, Stop the Pandemic” will feature special musical guest Kimberly Locke from “American Idol” along with drag diva Coti Collins as Master of Ceremonies.
Additional related events will take place in the days leading up to July 28 (see sidebar). Tickets are on sale now on the CMF website and at White Rabbit Books in Raleigh and Cameron’s in Chapel Hill.
The Crape Myrtle Festival, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Classic Movie Night
Riotous comedy from John Waters! Pre-show contest for the best Edna Turnblad/
Divine, best Tracy Turnblad/Ricky Lake and the best John Waters. Showtime at 8 p.m. Admission: $10. The Rialto Theatre, 1620 Glenwood Ave.
Rewind: A Classic Dance Party
With music from the ’70s, ’80s & ’90s.
Featuring Tajma Hall & DJ Brian. 10 p.m. – until. Admission: $10. The CC, 315 W. Hargett St.
The Classic Crape Myrtle Gala
Featuring “American Idol” finalist Kimberley Locke and Master of Ceremonies Coti Collins. 7 p.m. - Midnight. Admission: $35 in advance, $45 at the door. The Lincoln Theatre, 126 E Cabarrus St.