Labor Day Forecast Includes Fair-Weather Fun

Travelers urged to keep track of Tropical Storm Hermine's arrival and departure

Sep. 2, 2016

RALEIGH, N.C. (September 2, 2016) ― Despite the expectation that Tropical Storm Hermine will blow across the North Carolina coast, there’s little chance of a Labor Day Weekend washout.

The National Weather Service’s Friday morning forecast indicated that sunshine will begin spreading from the mountains to the southern coast on Saturday. By Sunday, people at the Outer Banks and Crystal Coast should also see clear skies.

“Despite our optimism, we always urge travelers to monitor the forecast for their destination,” said Wit Tuttell, executive director of Visit North Carolina. “But it looks like there’s no reason to cancel plans for summer’s grand finale.”

A grand finale is what communities across the state have in mind for the holiday weekend, one of the year’s biggest travel times. AAA Carolinas estimates that more than 1 million North Carolinians will travel more than 50 miles from home with the majority driving to their destination.

For people still looking for a perfect weekend getaway, here are a few ideas from

  • North Carolina Apple Festival, Friday-Monday, Hendersonville. The festival’s 70th annual edition features a street fair on historic Main Street with continuous live music, arts and crafts, apple products, activities for kids, food and the King Apple Parade, which takes place on Labor Day.
  • John Coltrane International Jazz & Blues Festival, Saturday-Sunday, High Point. Top performers from the jazz and blues realm pay tribute to “Trane,” who was born in Hamlet and grew up in High Point. This constellation includes Esperanza Spalding, Gregory Porter, Kenny G, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ramsey Lewis and Eric Gales.
  • NC Sunflower Festival, Saturday-Monday, Chocowinity. Hermine prompted a schedule change at this inaugural festival, which was originally set for Friday-Sunday. Music, hayrides and a corn maze are featured activities at Raised in a Barn Farm. Sunday brings Praise by the Maze and the Church Ladies Cooking Competition, and Monday features hot-air balloon rides.
  • Happy Valley Heritage Old-time Fiddlers' Convention, Friday-Sunday, Lenoir. Located on the site of Laura Foster's grave (of Tom Dooley fame), the convention offers old-time, bluegrass and flatfoot dance competitions plus folk singing, instrument making, hayrides, corn shucking, flat foot competitions and home-cooked delicacies.
  • Smoky Mountain Folk Festival, Friday-Saturday, Lake Junaluska. Two nights of traditional Southern Appalachian music and dance unfold on the grand stage of the Stuart Auditorium. Performances feature banjo players, string bands, ballad singers, buck dancers, square dance teams and folk ensembles and instruments including dulcimer, harmonica, Jew's harp, bagpipes, spoons and saws.
  • Jerome Davis PBR Invitational, Saturday-Sunday, Archdale. Participants and fans flock to this long-running event to pay respect to a legendary rider. Part of the Professional Bull Riders’ Touring Pro Division, the event features best bull riders and champion bulls.
  • Emerald Village's RockFest, Saturday-Sunday, Little Switzerland. Historic mines offer two days of open-air music along with mine tours, gem mining, gold panning and mineral collecting just off the Blue Ridge Parkway. The event also includes Black Light Mine Tours, a free kid’s treasure hunt and an opportunity to learn about the area’s geologic history.
  • African American Cultural Festival of Raleigh and Wake County, Saturday-Sunday, Raleigh. This free festival celebrates culture as expressed through art, music, food and community. Performances, a gallery walk and activities in the Family Village are among the highlights.

Find more events plus ideas, inspiration and trip-planning tools at



Scott Peacock

Suzanne Brown