Choose your category - then choose your own adventure!



  • On Jan. 12 at Hillsborough’s Expedition School, gospel singer Mary D. Williams will perform “From Slavery to Freedom: The Power of Music.” This family-friendly event will combine spirituals sang by those enslaved with protest songs of the ongoing Civil Rights Movement.
  • The annual University/Community Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Banquet and Award Presentation on Jan. 19 at the Friday Center kicks off a week of celebration in Chapel Hill. This year's speaker will be Chief Justice Cheri Beasley, the first African American woman in the North Carolina Supreme Court’s 200-year history to serve as Chief Justice. For tickets and more information about the week's events, click here.

Martin Luther King Jr.


  • On Jan. 10, enjoy Chapel Hill and Carrboro’s 2nd Friday Artwalk. Explore venues, have a bit to eat, listen to live music, and socialize. Download a map here.
  • On Jan. 12, the NC Symphony brings Gustav Holst’s sonic celestial showpiece “The Planets” to Memorial Hall.
  • The Hillsborough Arts Council 2020 Parlor Concert Season​ is January through April, featuring live music in an intimate setting. All shows begin at 4 pm with a reception following the concert. The series begins Jan. 19 and with Queen Bee and the Honey Lovers. Tickets are $25.
  • One of America’s hottest young playwrights gives 15th-century morality tale “Everybody” a much-needed lift of theatrical whimsy, as Everybody – hounded by Death – desperately searches among everything and everyone in hope of finding something to take on life’s final journey. The play is Jan. 22 through Feb. 9 at Playmakers Repertory Company.
  • David Burney – lead singer for the acclaimed Johnny Cash tribute band Johnny Folsom 4 – brings his one-man show to The ArtsCenter for three shows from Jan. 24 to 26. In “Hello, I’m Johnny Cash,” Burney shares an intimate portrayal of the Man in Black’s life story.
  • On Jan. 30, Martha Graham Dance Company returns to Carolina Performing Arts with stunning new works from The EVE Project, created in honor of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment and featuring the work of women choreographers and composers. 

Parlor Concert hosted by Hillsborough Arts Council


  • On Jan. 7, the Chapel Hill Public Library, working in partnership with the Crook’s Corner Book Prize Foundation, will host a book chat with the debut novelist whose work will be honored with this year’s prize.
  • On Jan 8, the Unity Center of Peace will welcome the Yale Russian Chorus for a performance. This group has delighted the world with sacred and secular music of the Slavic world for 65 years. Tickets are $10-$15.
  • On Jan. 11, bring the whole family to Transactors Improv at The ArtsCenter. The 60-minute performance is based on audience suggestions and is appropriate for all ages.
  • At Hill Hall on UNC’s campus on Jan. 17, Cristina Pato and  Mazz Swift present INVISIBLE(s), an exploration of how our social, political, and cultural landscapes might be different if history had been written by the people of forgotten communities.  
  • On Jan. 23 at The ArtsCenter, join a chorus of strangers – also known as PopUp Chorus – to sing songs by Wham! And Miley Cyrus.   
  • At Hillsborough’s Passmore Center on Jan. 23, prepare for thrill and suspense. “Fever Dreams” is a collection of four tales that were filmed in and around the Triangle. These tales have been compared to the “Twilight Zone” and “The Creepshow.” Local writer and producer Al Julian will host this event with a Q&A afterward. One of the stars is R. Keith Harris of “The Walking Dead” TV series.  


  • On Jan. 6 at The Cave, local legend Dexter Romweber plays the piano at The Cave. And on Jan. 23, The Lettermans – a band from Philly that’s heavily influenced by The Ramones, Huntingtons, The Queers, Riverdales, and more – takes the stage there.
  • On Jan. 10 and 11, WUNC Music presents Hiss Golden Messenger and Lilly Hiatt at Cat’s Cradle.
  • Every Friday at the PIT, all shows are free. Stop by and see improv and stand-up acts!

The PIT - Chapel Hill


  • On the afternoon of Jan. 11 at Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, explore “Winter Skies” with the family.


  • On Jan. 5 at 2 pm, a guided hike through the beautiful oaks of Cox Mountain along the Eno River will focus on the geology of the mountain and river, as well as the history. (And click here for more information on hiking the Eno anytime!)
  • Speaking of hiking, check out the George and Julia Brumley Family Nature Preserve, a 613-acre preserve about two miles southeast of the town of Hillsborough. You can also mountain bike on some of its trails.
  • On Jan. 16, attend the kickoff lecture for the North Carolina Botanical Garden’s “2020: Year of the Wildflower” exhibition. Tom Earnhardt – writer, TV co-producer, and past president of Botanical Garden Foundation, Inc.– will share his 2020 vision for North Carolina and how finding a cure for the epidemic of plant blindness can have a positive impact on biodiversity worldwide. Free, but registration is required.

(Photo credits: Header, Eno River tributary on the Matheson Property - Fred Myers; Martin Luther King, Jr. - Wikimedia Commons; Parlor Concert - Hillsborough Arts Council; The Pit-Chapel Hill - Susan P Murray)