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On the town

For theaters and galleries, the show must go on.


From outdoor concerts and festivals to art galleries and theatrical productions, Fayetteville has lots of ways to entertain you. Whether it’s a family outing or an evening with out-of-town guests, the calendar is almost always full.
Downtown Fayetteville is a sure bet for family activities. Catch a Fayetteville Woodpeckers baseball game at Segra Stadium featuring home-game themes and fireworks. Discover more about the area at the Airborne & Special Operations Museum or Fayetteville Area Transportation and Local History Museum. The younger set can run around in the displays at Fascinate-U Children’s Museum or decorate a cupcake at Sweet Palette bakery.
At the Crown Complex, concerts and sports are options for the weekends along with annual festivities like the Cumberland County Fair in September.
Festival Park in downtown Fayetteville is home to outdoor concerts, shows and festivals. Bring a beach chair or blanket and pocket money for food trucks to enjoy the vibe of events like the Fayetteville After 5 concert series.

Cape Fear Regional Theatre, located at 1209 Hay St., stages a full season of musicals, dramas and comedies along with educational programs throughout the year. The 2023-24 lineup includes “The Play That Goes Wrong,” Sept. 7-24; “Addams Family: A New Musical,” Oct. 9-Nov. 5; “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,’’ Dec. 2-17; “Cinderella,’’ Jan. 25-Feb. 18, 2024; “King Liz,’’ March 21-April 7, 2024; and “Sister Act,” May 2-26, 2024. 910-323-4234 or cfrt.org
Gilbert Theater at 116 Green St., located above Fascinate U Children’s Museum, entertains audiences in a black-box theater with productions ranging from quirky to serious. All productions showcase local talent. 910-678-7186 or gilberttheater.com
Sweet Tea Shakespeare brings fun outdoor performances to the Fayetteville, Sanford and Raleigh areas with live music before every show. Guests may bring their own seating or rent from a limited stock of chairs and quilts. Food and beverages are available for purchase, including the signature sweet tea. Performance locations vary. Shows planned for the upcoming season include: “Julius Caesar,” “The Merry Wives of Windsor,” “The LIT Housewives of Windsor,” “Everybody,” and “Twelfth Night: A Musical.” 910-420-4383 or sweetteashakespeare.com
Community Concerts, which completed its 87th season in May, brings a variety of musical guests to the Crown Theatre. Last year’s season featured Boyz II Men; Earth, Wind & Fire; and an ABBA tribute show. For information on the 2023-24 season, call 910-323-1991 or go to community-concerts.com.
The Crown Complex hosts musical acts and stage shows, as well as sports, trade shows and more. Venues include the Crown Coliseum, a theater and an expo center. “American Idol” winner Fantasia performed in concert in June. Upcoming shows include “Bluey’s Big Play: The Stage Show,” Aug. 17; Maxwell, Oct. 20; “Wheel of Fortune Live,” Nov. 2; The Ville City Blues Festival, Nov. 4; and “The Nutcracker” ballet, Dec. 18. 910-438-4100 or crowncomplexnc.com
Downtown Summer Nights concert series is expected to return this year with a twist: The concerts will be staged at different locations in Cumberland and Robeson counties.
Fayetteville After 5, the summer concert series sponsored by the Fayetteville Dogwood Festival, brings concerts to Festival Park with music, food trucks and fun. 910-323-1934 or thedogwoodfestival.com
Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra fills performance venues from Seabrook Auditorium at Fayetteville State University to the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church on Green Street. The lineup includes season concerts, community concerts and student concerts. It also hosts Symphony on Tap, a musical series with free admission at local breweries. The Independence Concert and fireworks show are scheduled for July 4 at Festival Park. The 2023-24 season includes the Kruger Brothers on April 20, 2024, as well as “Spooktacular,” Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” Holiday Pops, violinist Brendan Slocomb, “Blazin’ Brass, and trombonist Joseph Alessi. Single tickets range from $5 for children to $32 for adult general admission. Discount ticket pricing is available for seniors, Cumberland County Schools employees, military and college students. 910-433-4690 or fayettevillesymphony.org.
Fayetteville State University brings musical acts, national artists and more to Seabrook Auditorium. 910-672-1724 or uncfsu.edu/community/seabrook
Methodist University hosts student concerts throughout the year, featuring its MU All-Choirs concert, Chamber Strings, concert band and more. In December, the music department hosts Yuletide Feaste at Haymount United Methodist Church with dinner and music. 910-630-7100 or methodist.edu/performing-arts
The Arts Council of Fayetteville-Cumberland County is a nonprofit organization that serves as a link between artists and cultural organizations. The council’s Art Center Gallery hosts free exhibits throughout the year. The Arts Council is at 301 Hay St. in downtown Fayetteville. 910-323-1776 or theartscouncil.com
The Art Gallery at Fayetteville Technical Community College displays exhibitions each semester that feature the artwork of students, faculty and outside artists. Exhibitions are free and open to the public, and they run year-round. The gallery is in the foyer of the Paul H. Thompson Library at 2221 Hull Road. 910-678-0092
Cape Fear Studios offers art lessons and hosts a community of artists in residence. The nonprofit organization is in downtown Fayetteville. It includes a retail gallery and a main gallery that exhibit art works in an array of media by local, national and international artists. The exhibits are free and open to the public. The studio is at 148 Maxwell St. 910-433-2986 or CapeFearStudios.com
David McCune International Art Gallery, located on the campus of Methodist University, coordinates exhibitions of art by student, regional, national and international artists. 910-630-7000 or methodist.edu/art/galleries/mccune/
Ellington-White Contemporary Gallery features emerging and professional artists at 113 Gillespie St. Throughout the year, it hosts local, national and international exhibitions. 910-483-1388 or ellington-white.com
Rosenthal Art Gallery, located in the Rosenthal Building on the campus of Fayetteville State University, is part of the university’s department of performing and fine arts. It hosts exhibits of works by students, staff and internationally known artists throughout the year. 910-672-1795
Airborne & Special Operations Museum has exhibits on the past, present and future of the Army’s airborne and special operations forces. The museum is owned and operated by the Army. The museum, which also hosts special programs and guest speakers, is at 100 Bragg Blvd. Admission is free and open to the public. 910-643-2778 or asomf.org
Fascinate U Children’s Museum, in the heart of downtown Fayetteville at 116 Green St., is a hands-on interactive museum created to educate as well as provide hours of fun for children of all ages. The museum offers family memberships, art classes and children’s birthday packages. 910-829-9171 or fascinate-u.com
Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex features exhibits bringing the region’s diverse history to life with living-history programs and demonstrations. The museum’s tours, special events, interactive programs and demonstrations connect visitors to the Cape Fear region’s past. The Poe House, a restored 1897 home, and Arsenal Park, the remains of an ordnance factory from the Civil War era, make up the historical complex at 801 Arsenal Ave. 910-500-4240 or museumofthecapefear.ncdcr.gov