Now that October is over, Christmas carolers are knocking at the door. Kick off your holiday season with a light show, pastry sale, or early shopping at the Raleigh Flea Market.

The Magic of Lights

Walnut Creek

Raleigh is welcoming Christmas early this year with the first holiday light show of the season. If you’ve been searching for that special drive-thru that will brighten your night and shelter you from COVID, look no further. The Magic of Lights opens Friday and stays twinkly through the New Year (Jan. 2), with a one-mile route that winds through displays including 12 Days of Christmas, Winter Wonderland, and The Night Before Christmas. 

The show is open 5-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 5-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Tickets start at $20.

Drive-Thru Holiday Greek Pastry Sale

‘Tis the season for delicious pastries at St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church. If you’re craving authentic baklava, kourambiedes (sugar-dusted shortbread cookies), or finikia (cinnamon and walnut cookies in a honey syrup), you don’t have to fly to Greece, just drive to Durham. North Carolina’s thriving immigrant community will provide. Come early before all that’s left are sugar sprinklings. 

The sale is 3-7 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday. 

The Raleigh Market

Get an early start on your Christmas shopping by exploring the Raleigh flea market, back at the NC State Fairgrounds since the state fair moved out. Best known for its antiques, the market is also home to local art and handicrafts. While you’re there, be sure to stop by the Treasures of the Earth Gem, Mineral and Jewelry Show, setting up shop in Kerr Scott Building. You might not be able to afford that 18-carat diamond necklace in a hand-crafted silver setting, but you sure can enjoy the sparkle. Down the road a bit, even more crafts are on sale at N.C. State University

The Raleigh Market is open every weekend, Saturday and Sunday, 9-5.  Admission and parking are free. 

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