It’s festival time!

OutRaleigh set for early May

RALEIGH, N.C. — The LGBT Center of Raleigh, 411 Hillsborough St., has announced that its OutRaleigh Street Festival will be held on May 5, 11 a.m.-7 p.m., from Fayetteville St. at the capitol all the way to City Plaza. Theme is “All Families Matter” with a special focus on the May 8 Amendment One ballot measure with volunteers of the Coalition to Protect All NC Families on hand to answer questions. Equality North Carolina is encouraging voters to take advantage of the last day of early voting on May 5. Go vote and then join the festivities at the capital city.

About 80 vendors are expected to showcase their goods and services. Attendees can peruse the booths and exhibits, as well as the festival free of charge. The event will happen come rain or shine. Last year the event attracted 6,000 and organizers are hoping for 10,000 next month.

This family-friendly atmosphere will include a main stage performance area complete with local and regional musical groups, along with dignitaries and speakers. They have the children covered with the KidsZone, where kids will be able to enjoy free activities and educational entertainment.

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Who’s Bad, the Ultimate Michael Jackson Tribute Band, as well as Kristy Lee will be on hand to entertain, along with Someone’s Sister and a host of other acts to satisfy every palette.

Special performances by Team Don’t H8, a Gastonia dance team that embraces diversity, and DV8, a group of teens from Burke County, who will be providing characterizations on the issues of intolerance, inequality and rejection through song, dance, sign shows, and painting.

Rev. Jimmy Creech will join other faith leaders for the festivities, as well as other speakers.

The event is seeking volunteers. Training is scheduled for April 24, 25 and 28.

Many events request an OutBand which can be purchased for $5 at the center or at the festival.

On April 22, a preliminary Earth Day celebration will be held at the center from 2-3:30 p.m. and is sponsored by the Affirming Faith Forum. Join the discussion of life and nature from the Native American perspective.

On April 29, enjoy The Great Cookie Krumble, a tasting party hosted by the graphics committee at the center from 2-4 p.m. Bring three dozen favorite recipe cookies. Participants vote on Taste, Creative and Best Overall categories. Winner receives a golden whisk award. RSVP is requested by April 20. A cookie book is in the works using recipes from the scrumptious sweets. A suggested $5 donation will be accepted for book sales.

Later that afternoon kick up those heels for a tea dance at Pie Bird, 618 N. Person St., Raleigh, from 4-7 p.m. A $5 contribution is suggested.

May 1 brings a LGBT jobs fair at Venture Hall at the IMAX Marbles Kids Museum, 201 East Hargett St., Raleigh, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Included will be workshops and employer connections. From 5-10 p.m., enjoy a dine and donate family night at Ciago’s, 522 Saint Mary’s St. Ten percent of the sales goes to the center. Kids meals are 99 cents.

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Get connected at the Business Networking event at The Borough, 317 W. Morgan St., Raleigh, from 7-9 p.m. Raffle tickets will be on sale for $2 each or three for $5 for a $20 gift certificate at Green Monkey, 1,000 business cards from Fairway Printing and $500 gift certificate from This Just In.

Deep South bar, 430 South Dawson St., Raleigh, will feature a live entertainment on May 4 starting with Pam Saulsby at 8 p.m., TeamMate at 9 p.m. and Mary Selvidge at 10 p.m. Admission is $5 and open to those 21 and older.

A First Friday Art and Wine Reception will be held at the center from 6-9 p.m., featuring the work of artist Ellen Shepard.

Head over to night life spots for an evening of fun and camaraderie. For Raleigh, enjoy a kick-off party at Spy Bar, 330 W. Davie St., 8-11 p.m., $5 contribution to benefit the center; women’s pre-party at the Hive, 225 S. Wilmington St.8-10 p.m. with DJ SPCL GST; Fortune Feimster with special guest Jason Dudy at Charlie Goodnights, 861 W. Morgan St., 8 p.m. and 10:15 p.m. (also on May 5); house party at 313, drag show at 11:30 p.m. and 1 a.m., free entry with OutBand or college ID; for Durham, Wynona Ryder dance party at Pinhook, $5.

The next day enjoy a bear cook out at Flex, 2 S. West St., in Raleigh with free food from 10 p.m. on. Get $5 off cover with an OutBand which may be purchased for $5. In Durham, head over the The Bar, 711 Rigsbee Ave. Cover is free with an OutBand.

The Longbranch, 608 Creekside Dr., welcomes the Crape Myrtle Festival bull riding and dance party at 6 p.m.

For extended detail on these events and other information, including ticket purchases, etc., visit outraleigh.org.

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Posted by Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen is QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director. She can be reached at specialassignments@goqnotes.com and 704-531-9988, x205.