The first Friday of every month is a celebration of diverse culture for the citizens of Downtown Raleigh. Dozens of galleries, museums, restaurants and shops join in on the celebration by offering specials on admission, culinary creations, and merchandise.
They mark their shops with a First Friday Flag so that anyone browsing the storefronts may spot a fellow reveler. The festivities usually run from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. but many business participants keep their specials and even their events running later into the night.
Come to First Friday to experience art in all of its forms- music, dance, sculpture, painting, food, drink, and much more.
The Downtown Raleigh Alliance is a group of community members determined to improve the lives of other community members. Their projects not only improve the quality of life in Raleigh but also boost the economy of the city.
Other than the First Friday’s they are responsible for the Raleigh Downtown Farmer’s Market and the ATT Raleigh Winterfest.
They are considered the city’s safety and cleanliness ambassadors, along with the ultimate Hosts of Hospitality. The DRA serves all of its stakeholders, from homeowners to executives.
In the areas surrounding the First Friday hot spots there are 36 parking lots that make driving a convenient way to get Downtown. These can be found here.
Most of these locations offer free parking after 7pm. Once you are Downtown most locations are in walking distance. For those that are not there are two great options for additional transportation.
The R-Line is Raleigh’s hybrid electric bus system, which arrives at each bus stop every ten to fifteen minutes. The Raleigh Rickshaw Company runs until 3am on First Fridays and is a unique way to get from place to place. The drivers work solely for tips so be generous.
Unique Art Experiences
Located through the First Friday self-guided tour are a number of free art galleries, exhibits and events. The multi-material collages of Eric McRay are on display under the project name Trial by Fire II. His work splices pieces of the real world with photographs of the same subject.
Sally Resnik Rockriver’s blown glass artwork is modeled after the recently discovered Planet Azure. Her exhibit is a breathtaking visual of the rain of glass experienced on the far off world. Chemical reactions make her artwork even more dynamic.
City Market Finale
End your night with a finale of music, prizes, and food at the City Market Finale. The Chris Hendriks band will be playing live from 7 to 10 p.m. Raffles and gift giveaways will proceed all evening.
Surrounding shops offer drink specials and creative dining. Follow the flags on a vendor hopping adventure. Videri Chocolate Factory, Irregardless Care, Atomic Salon, and many more will be celebrating with their Raleigh peers and guests to the diverse city.
Every day is a day to celebrate. Thanks to the DRA and First Fridays, we are reminded of that.