This weekend: It’s cooling off? Get out!

Sure there’s a threat of rain — there’s always a threat of rain in summer; it’s the meteorologist’s ultimate hedge. But cooler temperatures demand that you start planning an active weekend earlier than usual.

Like now.

Young and old (I've done it several times) are embraced at the Huck-A-Buck.


I usually don’t throw out mountain bike races as a weekend option because they’re typically targeted to a more adrenaline-influenced crowd and they can be expensive to enter. None of that applies to the venerable Huck-A-Buck this Sunday at Lake Crabtree County Park in Morrisville. The Huck-A-Buck has a competitive element, to be sure, but race founders Chris Pappas and Pat Lundergan with Happy Fun Racing have done a great job ensuring that the Huck remain a Race for the People — meaning people like me, who can show up and not be obviously out of place in the aforementioned adrenaline-happy crowd. I’m especially glad to suggest the Huck-A-Buck considering last year’s 10th edition was rumored to be the last. Long live the Huck!

There’s racing in a variety of categories, from Kids and Juniors 11-18, to Clydesdales (200+ pounds) to Cat 1. The course is a 7-mile loop of fast, beginner/intermediate singletrack, and the entry fee is ridiculously cheap, at $25 ($15 for Juniors, free for pre-Juniors).

Logistics: Racing begins at 9 a.m., with categories going off at 9, 10:30 and noon. Registration begins at 8 a.m. Details here.

Sunday forecast: A brisk 82, “Mostly cloudy and cooler with some showers and storms possible,” according to WRAL.

Run for the mansion.


With cooler weather moving in, what better way to start a day at the coast than with a quick 5K around Wilmington’s Bellamy Mansion, which, according to itself, is “one of North Carolina’s most spectacular examples of antebellum architecture built on the eve of the Civil War by free and enslaved black artisans, for John Dillard Bellamy (1817-1896) physician, planter and business leader; and his wife, Eliza McIlhenny Harriss (1821-1907) and their nine children.” The Bellamy Mansion Race for History starts at 8 a.m. Do your 3.1 miles, then return to the mansion for breakfast before launching the rest of your day.

Logistics: Race is at 8 a.m., preregistration fee is $25, day of is $30. Details here.

Saturday forecast: High of 84, 70 percent chance of rain.

Racing, French Broad style.


Unless you’re a bike racer (in which case you likely already know about this) this likely is more of a spectator event. But spectating often leads to involvement, so every once in a while we offer such an opportunity. This weekend, that opportunity is the French Broad Cycling Classic, three days of racing featuring top pro and amature riders. Racing is in the Asheville area. See “Logistics” for details on where to look for details.

Logistics: Go here for details.

Sunday forecast: Highs around 80, chance of precip ranging from 40 to 60 percent.

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Those are GGNC’s thoughts for an active weekend. Find out other ways you can get out this weekend by browsing our super calendar, a collection of events calendars from throughout the state, below.

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 costal 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.
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).


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



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.

Comprehensive calendar includes a Sports & Recreation category.

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

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.


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.

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