VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS
Wilmington dishes out a generous plate of venues to sate its residents’ appetite for the arts; from the newly constructed Humanities & Fine Art Center —a state-of-the-art complex on the Cape Fear Community College campus housing a 1500-seat theater, art gallery and studios−to Thalian Hall Center for the Performing Arts – the 150+ year old crown jewel of Historic Downtown. Adorned with art galleries, coffee houses, theater playhouses, and outdoor courtyards; Downtown Wilmington offers a copious variety of settings for connoisseurs of art, music, film, dance and theater. Outside this inherent depot, arts enthusiasts can locate several other prime spots around town to attend a concert, listen to a symphony, watch a musical or browse through a museum.
STEP BACK IN TIME
Immerse yourself in an area steeped with 18th and 19th century history as you stroll down the city blocks of Downtown Wilmington. Take a carriage ride to hear the about the haunts from a bygone era; climb aboard a narrated tour with the Wilmington Trolley Company, or tour some of its grandiose houses—the Bellamy Mansion and the Burgwin-Wright house. Owing to its rich heritage as a prominent port city, Wilmington and the Lower Cape Fear region contain several remnants of the past to explore.
FESTIVALS AND AREA ATTRACTIONS
Owing to its temperate climate, scads of festivals and outdoor concert series crop up throughout the year to supply a gamut of festivities. The ever-popular Azalea Festival has become a Wilmington institution in 60+ years of celebrations—attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors and locals in April for a 4-day weekend of over 50 events featuring celebrity guests, Street Fair, parade, musical concerts, and house and garden tours appointed with its signature southern belles clad in antebellum gowns and toting frilly parasols. Another well-established festival, Riverfest, has coaxed hordes of people to the streets of Downtown Wilmington since 1979. Many other annual events take place throughout Wilmington and in the surrounding communities– drawing crowds to its waterfronts, parks, and streetscapes. Several area attractions offer still more culture and entertainment for residential tourists and the legitimate ones too.