International Bluegrass Music Festivial

Visit IBMA for more info on Main Stage performances, Awards Show, Ramble, & Business Conference tickets and information.



FREE Wide Open Bluegrass Street Festival

As part of the free Wide Open StreetFest, Raleigh will again host 90+ bands on 5 stages, a dance tent, artisans and local vendors, concessions, youth performances, and more! In addition to enjoying all the great events, make sure to step inside the Raleigh Convention Center for FREE access to the Exhibit Hall, the Masters' Workshop Stage, and plenty of jamming! Of course, no festival is complete without food - the North Carolina Whole Hog Barbecue Championship will once again add a distinctly NC flavor to the fun, and there will be plenty of other mouth-watering food and drinks to keep you going as long as the music is playing.


Chatham County Line - "Living in Raleigh Now"


Event Highlights for 2016

Live Performances
The bluegrass tide spills into downtown Raleigh as more than 90 bands perform on six stages along Fayetteville Street. Performers include local, national, and international talent. The dance tent features clogging performances, participatory square dances, and late-night open dancing Friday and Saturday nights. Near the convention center, don’t miss the youth music stage - situated on the outdoor plaza at the Convention Center. Bands performing here selected by the IBMA Youth Council, Also on the Convention Center Plaza, snap and share a photo at the Banjostand, created by artist Bland Hoke out of recycled banjo parts. See the Live Performance Schedule here.


Free Access to the Raleigh Convention Center Friday & Saturday
Folks who come downtown for the StreetFest will also be welcomed to explore additional free events happening in the Raleigh Convention Center - there will be some free indoor performances, jamming, the youth room, and more. Plus, the IBMA exhibit hall will once again feature major instrument manufacturers and dozens of bluegrass-oriented businesses will have their wares displayed for all to see – and touch – throughout the day.

NC Whole Hog BBQ State Championship

North Carolina Whole Hog Barbecue State Championship
A weekend of bluegrass-flavored fun for the whole family.

The North Carolina Pork Council and the farm families that make up our state’s pork industry are proud to host this year's Whole Hog Barbecue Championship in the heart of the Wide Open Bluegrass festival in downtown Raleigh. The championship is the culmination of the annual Whole Hog Barbecue Series that includes 15 to 20 local barbecue competitions conducted as part of community events in Tar Heel cities and towns throughout the spring and fall. At this year's championship, the cooked barbecue will be collected after judging, chopped and sold to the general public by the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle. Proceeds from the sale of the barbecue will go to support the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle. Spectators will be able to watch the judging process in the parking area in front of the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts. Authentic North Carolina pork barbecue will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis at the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle tent located on Cabarrus Street next to the Raleigh Convention Center (between Salisbury & McDowell streets).


The N.C. Pork Council will also be hosting special Barbecue Experience Dinners on Friday and Saturday nights where attendees will be able to sample barbecue from across the state and witness cooking demonstrations by some of North Carolina’s finest chefs.


Friday night will kick off at 5 pm with a N.C. Barbecue Experience Dinner featuring Matthew Register of Southern SmokeReserve tickets


Saturday night’s barbecue festivities finish strong with another N.C. Barbecue Experience Dinner with Linwood Parker of White Swan from 5-9 pm. Reserve tickets


Learn more:


Brought to You By
The Wide Open Bluegrass Streetfest -- which drew 180,000 fans in 2014 -- is produced by the City of Raleigh, the Raleigh Convention Center, the Greater Raleigh Convention & Visitors Bureau, Pinecone and a host of community volunteers. We’re honored to showcase not only our talented musicians, but the excitement of downtown Raleigh and the hospitality of those who call this great city home.

ArtSplosureWOB Art Market Presented by Artsplosure; Got to Be NC Area; NC Craft Beers, and more!
What is a Raleigh street festival without art? The WOB Art Market is an intimate, juried showcase designed to recognize North Carolina’s talented and enthusiastic arts community and feature unique artisans from across the United States. Applications will be available in June; application deadline will be July 20.

Got to be NC

Under the “Got To Be NC” banner, The North Carolina Department of Agriculture is sponsoring an area where vendors will be offering food items from throughout NC for tasting and purchase. And if you’re thirsty after sampling the regional cuisine, check out the craft beer tent for a sampling of local and regional brews and wines.

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