A leather-clad Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane made her entrance on a Harley Friday afternoon to announce the lineup for the 2015 M.A.I.N. (music, art, innovation, noise) Event.
The capital city capitalizes on ideal early autumn weather to host a series of festivals that celebrate everything from cultural heritage to technical advances and, beginning in 2014, brought existing events together under the M.A.I.N. banner. Through the month of September and into October, downtown Raleigh draws crowds for weekly festivals of all stripes.
The month opens with the annual African-American Cultural Festival on Sept. 5-6 with history, food, crafts and concerts.
The following week is given over to live music, with the Hopscotch Music Festival and its associated Design Festival offering morning-to-night performances from 175 bands in venues big and small.
Innovatours on Sept. 9 and the Innovate Raleigh Summit Sept. 10 highlight doers building the new economy in Raleigh, and the CED Tech Venture Conference brings together entrepreneurs and with those who can invest in their ideas.
Arts and innovation are the themes of the open-source SPARKCon, a hodgepodge of participatory events Sept. 17-20.
In the final week of September, downtown will rumble with the sounds of the Ray Price Capital City BikeFest and Motorsports Expo.
On Sept. 27, the diversity of the Triangle Latino community – its food, music, arts and more – will be on display at La Fiesta del Pueblo.
The M.A.I.N. Event wraps up with the return of the International Bluegrass Music Awards' World of Bluegrass series of concerts and events and awards Oct. 1-3.