Your Weekend: Adventure as different as night and day

What’s better than probing a cemetery on a hot summer night? Hiking the base of Pilot Mountain, perhaps? Or maybe a triathlon of the sprint variety. You've got options this weekend.

Coast / Coastal Plain

Oakdale+Cemetery+4+034It’s every kid’s perfect summer night: wait until sunset, then grab a flashlight and wander through the local cemetery. A rite of youth fraught with the forbidden: sneaking out after dark, trespassing, cavorting among the dead ... . No wonder it was a highlight of being a kid.

Now, those illicit evening romps are back, albeit with the edge replaced by education. Saturday evening, join local historians Dr. Chris Fonvielle and Robin Triplett, along with cemetery superintendent Eric Kozen on an Evening Flashlight Walking Tour through Wilmington’s Oakdale Cemetery. Learn about the history of Oakdale, Civil War veterans, funerary art and interesting Port City citizens, all while reliving those carefree days — nights, rather — of youth.

Vital Stats: Evening Flashlight Walking Tour, Saturday, July 16, 8 p.m., Oakdale Cemetery, Wilmington. $15. More info and to sigh up: 910.762.5682, friends@oakdalecemetery.org

Saturday forecast: 8 p.m. temperature of 82 with a 24 percent chance of rain.

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Looking ahead: Kayak Eco Tour to Masonboro Island, Aug. 16, Halyburton Park. More info here.

Piedmont

GHTriad.PilotThink of Pilot Mountain and you think of crowds. Of cars slowly making the two-mile drive to the summit, of trying to find a place to park, of elbowing your way down the Jomeokee or Ledge Spring trails.

Sunday, we invite you to experience a different side of Pilot Mountain on the trails less traveled. At 9:30 a.m., our GetHiking! Triad hiking group will take a 6-mile hike on the Mountains and Grindstone trails, circumnavigating the conical mountain’s base. We’ll avoid both the clouds and the heat.

Vital Stats: Pilot Mountain hike, GetHiking! Triad, Sunday, July 17, 9:30 a.m. More info and to sign up, here.

Saturday forecast: Temperature of 72 at the start, with a chance of rain.

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Looking ahead: Occoneechee Geology Hike, Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area, Hillsborough, Saturday, July 23. More info here.

Mountains

mt_mitchell_winter_hike_0It may seem oxymoronic to put the words “sprint” and “triathlon” in succession. Most of us generally associate a triathlon with an endeavor of endurance: swimming, then biking, then running. In the case of an Ironman, that’s swimming 2.4 miles, then cycling 112 miles, then running a marathon, or 26.2 miles. Lordy.

In that context, then, the dimensions of Sunday’s Asheville Triathlon — a 400-meter pool swim, 11.6-mile bike ride, and a 5K (3.1 miles) — may indeed seem like a sprint. Which isn't to diminish the challenge, a challenge taken up by up to 200 participants annually.

Feeling like a challenge? Details below.

Vital Stats: Asheville Triathlon, Sunday, July 17, 6:45 a.m., Asheville Recreation Park, Asheville. $60. More info here.

Sunday forecast: 63 degrees at 7 a.m. under partly cloudy skies.

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Looking ahead: "Movie: Winter on Mount Mitchell," July 31, 2:30 p.m., Mount Mitchell State Park. More info here.

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Those are our thoughts on the weekend. Find more options at the sources listed below.

Coast

CapeFearCoast.com
Comprehensive calendar for the Cape Fear/Wilmington/southern N.C. coast searchable by date and event name.

Coastal Guide
Comprehensive calendar including nature programs from a variety of coastal conservation and research agencies that offer nature programs. Covers the entire coast.

Crystal Cost Tourism Authority
Comprehensive calendar focusing on the Crystal Coast. Good source for programs offered by N.C. Coastal Federation, Cape Lookout National Park, N.C. National Estuarine Research Reserve and other costal conservation and research agencies that offer nature programs.

NCCoast.com
Comprehensive calendar including programs for the Outer Banks and Crystal Coast.

North Carolina Coast Host
Comprehensive calendar for the entire coast that lets you search for events by day, by region, by county, by city or by event (based on key word).

This Week Magazine
Primary focus is the Crystal Coast (North Carolina’s coastal midsection).

Mountains

Asheville Citizen-Times
From the main page, click on “Outdoors,” then WNC Outdoors calendar.

Blue Ridge Outdoors
Searchable calendar lets you extend your reach to events throughout the mid-Atlantic and Southeast (or you can just limit it to North Carolina). Also lets you search a boatload of categories, ranging from Hiking, Mountain Biking and Climbing to Trail Running, Triathlon and Road Walking.

The Mountain Times
From the main page, click on “Calendars,” then Main Events.

Todd’s Calendar

Piedmont

Charlotte

Charlotte Observer events calendar
Comprehensive calendar searchable by category, including Nature, Recreation, Recreation & Wellness, Running

Charlotte Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.

Triad

GoTriad.com
Comprehensive calendar includes a Sports & Recreation category.

Piedmont Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.

Triangle

Triangle.com
Comprehensive calendar searchable by category, including: Birding, Boating, Cycling, Nature, Rec & Wellness, Recreation, Running, Swimming, Tennis, Yoga.

Carolina Parent
Comprehensive calendar concentrating on things the family can do together.

Statewide

Great Outdoor Provision Co.
Calendar includes three weekly events for each of its seven markets: Chapel Hill, Charlotte, Greensboro, Greenville, Raleigh, Wilmington and Winston-Salem. Search by market.

Office of Environmental Education
One calendar for the numerous Environmental Education Centers statewide.

North Carolina State Parks
Lets you search for programs at the state’s parks, recreation areas and natural areas by location, by month, by topic. To reach the calendar from the home page, click on “Education,” then “Fun & Free Programs at Parks.”

National Forests in North Carolina
From the home page, click on Carolina Connections for news updates on the state’s four national forests as well as hints on recreational opportunities and a detailed rundown of recreation areas and the amenities at each.

U.S. National Wildlife Refuges
Rundown, by month, of regular activities at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service refuges in North Carolina.

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