Farmers’ Markets Extend Hours

Shop for Spring produce, flowers, plants, meat, baked goods, specialty foods and crafts and Orange County’s Farmers Markets. You can visit Hillsborough Farmers Market online. In person markets include the Chapel Hill Farmers’ Market, the Eno River Farmers’ Market and the Carrboro Farmers’ Market.

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Fun at Spring Haven Farm

Come to Chapel Hill’s Spring Haven Farm to snuggle with baby goats, feed fluffy Highland cows, take a ride on the tractor train, or just kick back and relax. Enjoy the Baby Goat Festivals, participate at the Paint & Sip with Goats (21+) events, watch Movies with Goats and even ride the recently added old timey mechanical horse for 25 cents. The Farm is open Wednesday – Sunday.

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UNC Science Week

Morehead Planetarium and Science Center announces UNC Science Week—an entire week to celebrate the amazing and important STEM research that happens on the UNC campus. From April 11-17, scientists and research teams will engage with the public in fun and COVID-safe ways. The week, part of the NC Science Festival, culminates with Scientist Saturday, featuring a planetarium show, followed by exploring current science research through individual display tables hosted by UNC scientists.

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Hillsborough Walking Tours

There are three self-guided walking tours available in Hillsborough including the new Hillsborough’s African American History: A Walking Tour. Others include Walk Through Historic Hillsborough and Gardens & Cemeteries. The tours are coordinated by the Alliance for Historic Hillsborough.

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Southern Village Music & Movies

The Southern Village Green has “pod seating” – 40 pods that seat up to 5 people. Their Sundays at Sundown series, featuring live music on the lawn 7 pm begins April 11 and runs through September. People can reserve pods for a fee of $15, which goes to the musicians. Movies by Starlight, presented by The Lumina Theater, begins April 15 through October 31. Movies begin at dusk. Reserve pods through The Lumina. Finally, Wine Down Wednesdays begins April 7 at La Vita Dolce. Mingle, sip and enjoy live music and special pricing on wines from 5:30 pm – 7:30pm.

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Orange County Speedway

The 2021 season begins April 10 with the Garry Emmons Memorial Night Race. Grandstand capacity is limited due to COVID-19 restrictions. The green flag drops at 7 pm. at the track at 9740 Hwy 57, Rougemont. General admission tickets are only $10, Seniors 65+ are $8 and Youth 10 & Under $1. Season runs through October 23.

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More Happenings

April 8The Spark with Tift Merritt: Michelle Dorrance

April 10Livestream Laurel and Hardy Live Score by Tim Carless – The ArtsCenter

April 11Virtual Carrboro Open Streets

April 13Battle Park Tour

April 16-25Virtual Tar Heel 10 Miler

April 17 Spring Silent Walk on North Carolina Botanical Garden Nature Trails

April 22Date Night Exhibit Opening & Curator Talk at Orange County Historical Museum

April 22-25Vietri Outlet Virtual Warehouse Sale

April 30Last Fridays in Hillsborough

April 30Spring Garden Walk at North Carolina Botanical Garden

Follow The Carolina Inn for upcoming information on the new-look Fridays on the Front Porch as it returns in April.

Select Downtown spaces on East and West Franklin Street are adorned with graphic art as part of the temporary Downtown Vinyl project. Created by various Chapel Hill artists in response to the current climate of our world, these pieces of temporary vinyl art aim to inspire community and foster encouragement and resilience.

Head to Downtown Chapel Hill on Saturdays from 6 pm to 8 pm for the Save the Music Series. Grab a bite to eat and enjoy the music.

Spring and Summer Downtown Chapel Hill Parking

Parking is free on Sundays, all year long.

Parking is free on Town of Chapel Hill observed holidays.

This includes public parking on-street, in decks, and surface lots. Posted 3.22.21– Parking is free at all off-street lots on the West End at 6 pm each day and throughout downtown on every Saturday– until August 1, 2021. Only exception to the free Saturday parking is on May 15, 2021.

UNC Sports schedules can be found on UNC’s Spring Football Game will be held a Kenan Stadium on Saturday, April 24 at 3 pm. Click here for the current capacity allowed at UNC’s spring sports venues.

For ongoing updates at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, visit and the CarolinaTogether websites. Mark your calendar for UNC Class of 2021 Graduation the weekend of May 14-16.

UNC Visitors Center at 134 E. Franklin Street is open Monday – Friday, 10 am – 2 pm. Don’t forget the Zoom Sense of Place Tours.

UPDATE: Governor Roy Cooper announced on March 23 the state will continue to lift some of its COVID-19 restrictions. Executive Order No. 204 took effect March 26 at 5 pm and will expire April 30. Here is a quick overview.

Food and Drink News Since Last Newsletter

What’s Coming – This spring, Giorgios Hospitality Group and chef/partner Daniel Jackson will open Osteria Georgi at 201 South Elliot Road in Chapel Hill, in the former Living Kitchen space. Coming to West Franklin Street, Go Stir Fry Express coming to 306 W. Franklin Street, #A and Franklin Motors Bar Lot to 601 W. Franklin Street. In Southern Village, Town Hall Grill is reopening in April.

Here are the latest dining options in Orange County. Visit Experience Downtown Chapel Hill for more information as well. For shopping options click here. Check in at VisitCarrboro and with Visit Hillsborough.

More News & Notes

Visit our accommodations page to make your 2021 reservations. Safety protocols are in place.

To receive visitor information email or leave a message at (919) 245-4320. You may also get up to date information on our Visit Chapel Hill website.

Follow along the progress of the Count on Me NC safety program brought to you by The North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association, VisitNC, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and NC State Extension.

Remember the 3 W’s: Wear a Face Covering, Wait 6 Feet and Wash Your Hands and use hand sanitizer. Be safe as you visit Orange County. Photo credits – Tulips on Carrboro Farmers’ Market Facebook, Spring Haven Farm Facebook, Billy Strayhorn Mural in Downtown Hillsborough on African American Walking Tour, Orange County Speedway by Thomas Lee Photography.

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