Thrive NC food festival to return to downtown Raleigh this spring
By Kathy Hanrahan, Out and About Editor
WRAL — After a successful inaugural year, Thrive NC food festival announced Wednesday it will be returning to downtown Raleigh this spring.
The festival, which is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, will be held May 9-10 at City Market. Each night will include chefs performing live demonstrations, samples from local restaurants and breweries and live music.
Thrive NC kicks off May 9 with an invitation-only summit addressing childhood nutrition and ways to combat food insecurity. The following day, the festival will present Thrive NC Service, which will bring members of the community together with a local nonprofit for a hands-on project to help those in need.
Last year's service project featured saw more than 100 volunteers packing 600 bags for the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle's Backpack Buddies Program, which helps provide more than 2,300 children with nutritious groceries for a weekend when free school breakfast and lunch are not provided. Volunteers also prepared bags of groceries for Wake County senior citizens in need.
Leading up to this year's festival, Thrive NC will host a series of service events around the Triangle. The specific dates and community partners haven't been announced, but organizers say the events will take place in March and April.
“We know that so many people want to make an impact on their community, and Thrive NC is a great opportunity to do just that,” President and CEO of Blue Cross NC Dr. Patrick Conway said. “From service projects this spring through the festival in May, we will give people the chance to move their passion into action right alongside Blue Cross NC to lessen food insecurity across the state.”
Tickets for the food festivals are $30 per night and include unlimited food and drink samples. Tickets go on sale Feb. 28.