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The North Carolina Azalea Festival

Riverfront Park -Downtown Wilmington
Downtown Wilmington Wednesday-Sunday, April 11th-15th Prices vary. Some events like Parade are free. Go to for all the details.

Celebrate Spring like a true Southerner. The North Carolina Azalea Festival is Wilmington"s annual community celebration and the largest festival of its kind in the state. Founded in 1948, the Azalea Festival has emerged as Wilmington"s premier event. Each April, a full week of natural beauty, big-name entertainment, festive galas, fun family events and Southern hospitality come together to showcase the charms of the Wilmington area. For community pride and springtime pageantry, the North Carolina Azalea Festival has no equal!

The Festival"s concerts, fairs and special events are viewed by more than one million people each year in person and through media coverage. More than 200,000 are estimated to attend the annual two-day Street Fair, while more than 100,000 gather to watch the Festival Parade. Each event is a celebration, beginning with the traditional arrival of Queen Azalea at the official opening of the five-day event. Stars glitter throughout town as Southern belles and their escorts promenade through lush gardens at the annual garden party. Everywhere the blooming azaleas offer colorful testimony to the rich  heritage of coastal Carolina.

Over 100 North Carolina and national artists will present fine paintings and 3D art creations at the 36th Annual Juried Spring Art Show and Sale. This "Official Art Show" of the North Carolina Azalea Festival, created by the Wilmington Art Association, is a long-standing tradition within this NC Festival.

Art Show Hours - The Juried Spring Art Show and Sale runs today through Wednesday from 10am to 5pm; Thursday through Saturday from 10am to 7pm. And Sunday from 10am to 4pm.

Azalea Garden Tour - Come enjoy Southern hospitality amid the vibrant color of azaleas and spring flowers during the 65th Annual Cape Fear Garden Club Azalea Garden Tour© in the  beautiful coastal community of Wilmington. An official event of the North Carolina Azalea Festival, the tour is one of the longest running and most popular garden tours in the South.

The tour, "Bloomin" Beautiful" will open Friday, April 13 at 10am with the spectacular Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at Greenfield Park Amphitheater. (Entrance is free.) Guests should arrive early to enjoy a pre-show of live music. The parade of the 2018 Azalea Belles accompanied by the Citadel Summerall Guards is the highlight of this ceremony along with the introduction of the  North Carolina Azalea Festival Queen and her Court. After the ceremony enjoy the recept ion in the Rotary Wheel garden adjacent to the amphitheater where members of the Cape Fear Garden Club will serve punch and over 7500 homemade cookies.

12 Gardens Tours are open at 10am until 6pm daily except for Airlie Gardens which will  NOT be open to the public on Friday. Click Here for Tickets ($25) and Click Here for Garden Descriptions. Tours will run Friday to Sunday.

On Thursday, April 12 come for a rockin" country show with Billy Currington and opening guests Drake White and Kenton Bryant at the Main Stage located at 701 N. Front Street.
On Friday, April 13th for American rock band 38 Special, with opening act Tuesdays Gone. Performances begin at 7pm also preforming on The Main Stage.

On Saturday, April 14th for hip hop legend Ludacris with Childish Major at The Main Stage beginning at 7pm.

Also on Saturday from 4-6pm come to the Old School Concert for old school jams at the beautiful Greenfield Lake.

On Sunday, April 15th The Penguin Presents Dark Star Orchestra at Greenfield Amphitheater for a Grateful Dead concert experience at 5pm.

On Friday, April 13th from 2-6pm come to the free After Garden Get Down at Bluewater; a fun dockside party open to the public immediately following the Airlie Luncheon Garden Party. Guests are invited to Bluewater"s waterfront bar & patio to enjoy live music, food and drink specials, and the best view on the Intracoastal. Attendees also receive a special guest appearance by Queen Azalea! Click Here for more info.

Waterfront Street Fair Music & Beer Garden - Saturday, April 14 @ 8am through Sunday, April 15 @ 5pm - The Wilmington Grill Music Stage and beer garden is a great place to catch tunes day and night.  Entry is FREE. Beverages available for purchase and outdoor games on site. Listen to your favorite local and regional musicians playing a variety of rock, blues, and folk.

Go to for all the details.


Wake County Parks and Open Space long term
Wake County Parks and Recreation Short Term 2