See below for the CenterFest 2019 media release; updated information will be posted in summer 2020.

Media Release
September 12, 2019
Sherry DeVries
Contact: (919) 560-2709

Andy Coats and the BankWalkers, Duke’s Rhythm & Blue, and Motiv8, Inc. highlight the lineup of 75 performing groups on 6 Stages

DURHAM, NC— The Durham Arts Council proudly presents the 45th Annual CenterFest Arts Festival on Sept. 21-22, 2019 featuring 132 top juried fine art and fine craft artists from 16 states, music and entertainment on 6 stages from 75 performing groups, a Beer Garden, 2 Kids Zones with rides & art activities, great local food trucks and festival food favorites, and a showcase of over 40 non-profits, government services and community organizations. This great lineup of visual artists, performers and community will entertain, delight and inspire a projected 34,000 visitors from the Triangle and beyond. Hours are Saturday 10 am – 6 pm, and Sunday 11 am – 5 pm, plus a Saturday evening after-party from 6 pm to 9 pm at the Bull McCabe’s CenterFest Beer Garden. Special feature: Visitors can join in celebration of new murals inspired by the upcoming special exhibition at the North Carolina Museum of Art “Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Mexican Modernism from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection.” The big reveal will happen at CenterFest on Saturday, September 21, from 1 to 4 pm. CenterFest is located in the heart of downtown Durham on the City Center streets surrounding the Durham Arts Council at 120 Morris St., Durham, NC 27701. Admission is free, however a $5 suggested donation is welcomed to support the festival and the youth arts education programs of the Durham Arts Council. More information, call 919-560-2787.

“The arts are, and always have been, central to Durham’s identity as a community. Centerfest is a long standing celebration of that identity that brings people together in our vibrant downtown,” said Durham Arts Council Board of Trustees President, Dr. Constanza Gómez-Joines.

“CenterFest brings talented visual artists and high energy performers together for a great weekend of creative fun kicking off the fall season. We are proud to showcase vibrant and diverse talents from near and far. We are excited to be back this year after Hurricane Florence forced cancellation of the 2018 festival!,” stated Sherry DeVries, Durham Arts Council Executive Director.

In the last four years CenterFest achieved the national ranking of ‘Top 100 Fine Arts Festivals in the United States’ by Sunshine Artist Magazine. CenterFest is North Carolina’s longest running juried outdoor arts festival.

Visual Artists
CenterFest 2019 features 132 visual artists representing 16 states, and including 93 North Carolina artists, with 65 artists from the Durham/Triangle area in Painting, Photography, Clay, Drawing, Fiber, Glass, Printmaking, Wood, Jewelry, Mixed Media, and Sculpture

Three distinguished fine arts judges will select the Visual Artist merit award winners to receive $2,500 in cash awards and other prizes for Best In Show, First Place, Second Place and Third Place winning artists. Judges include: Sidney Cruze, Zola Craft Gallery; Tamar Harris Warren, Arts Access; and Natalie Knox, Frank Gallery.

CenterFest 2019 Durham Coca-Cola “Citizens Choice Award”
Festival-goers are invited to pick their favorite CenterFest Visual Artist for a chance to win prizes in the CenterFest 2019 Citizens Choice Award contest, sponsored by Durham Coca-Cola Bottling Company. Voting/Entry Forms will be available at all CenterFest Information Booths and at CenterFest Visual Artist booths. The Citizens Choice Award will be presented to the winning artist at 4:00 p.m. on Sunday at the festival. Prizes include DPAC tickets, CenterFest T-shirts and Coca-Cola beverages.

Performing Artists
CenterFest 2019 Entertainment Committee has selected a great line-up of 75 performing groups, providing 20 hours of music, dance and entertainment on 6 stages. A CenterFest “After-Party” from 6:00 pm till 9:00 pm Saturday night features Andy Coats and the BankWalkers at the CenterFest Beer Garden at Bull McCabe’s.

Food and Beverage and CenterFest Beer Garden
CenterFest features a variety of classic festival foods and locally-sourced food from a variety of food vendors and local food trucks sure to satisfy anyone’s appetite – from burgers, bratwursts, seafood, and Thai, and empanadas, to traditional roasted corn, gyros, ice cream and turkey legs. CenterFest also features a Beer Garden in partnership with Bull McCabe’s Irish Pub. Coca-Cola product booths, sponsored and donated by Durham Coca-Cola, will be present throughout the festival to quench the thirst of festival goers of all ages.

“Pet Stop” and Splash Pools provided by The Animal Protection Society of Durham!
CenterFest will offer a refreshing refuge for visitors’ pets and service animals with water, shade, treats and Splash Pools. Provided by Animal Protection Society of Durham in the Ninth Street Bakery area of the festival. Well-behaved pets and service animals on leashes are allowed at CenterFest.

Durham Rotary Club Partnership
The Rotary Club of Durham is a Silver Sponsor of CenterFest and is providing Rotary Club member volunteers to assist CenterFest at the festival gates and Coke booths. The motto of the Rotary Club of Durham is “Serving Humanity” with members who are “People of Action”. The club is part of Rotary International, the global network of more than 1.2 million members committed to creating positive and lasting change in our communities and around the world. With over 200 members, the local Durham club partners with local organizations to do service projects, especially focused on Youth, Literacy, Hunger and Community Development, in addition to international projects for water and sanitation.

Bike valet parking system, is provided courtesy of the Durham Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission and Bike Durham.

Creative Kids Zones and Clay Fun Zone
Two CenterFest Kids Zone areas include free Hands-on, make and take art projects. Also featured are face painting by Paint Savvy, and the popular Bounce Houses, Slide and Trackless Train rides. Face painting and kids rides have nominal fees.

CenterFest Sponsors
CenterFest is presented and produced by the Durham Arts Council with support from official festival sponsors including Presenting sponsor: Duke Performances Gold sponsors: Durham Coca Cola, The Herald-Sun, MIX 101.5, Net Friends, The People’s Channel, Rivers Agency, SciMed Solutions, Spark Productions, TROSA, Palladium Sponsors: WUNC Silver Sponsors: ABC 11, All American Gutter Protection, Bull McCabe’s Irish Pub, Courtyard Marriott, Downtown Durham, Inc., Durham Performing Arts Center, Durham Magazine, Pella Windows & Doors, the Rotary Club of Durham, WNCU, WorkSmart Bronze Sponsors: The Blue Note Grill, Exchange Club of Durham, Triangle Blues Society, Kay P. Gresham, Ninth Street Bakery, the North Carolina Songwriters Co-op, Saladelia, Triangle Cellular Repair, WCPE, and 20 other business sponsors and partners. CenterFest is also assisted by The City of Durham and Discover Durham.

About Durham Arts Council
The Durham Arts Council is a 501©(3) nonprofit and local arts agency dedicated to supporting the arts in Durham and the entire Triangle Region in North Carolina and has served the community since 1954. Each year DAC serves nearly 400,000 visitors and program participants, over 2,000 artists, and more than 300 arts and cultural organizations through classes, artist residencies, exhibits, festivals, grants programs, technical support, arts advocacy and information services. Durham Arts Council, Inc. is a catalyst in the cultural development of Durham – it leads, inspires, and promotes excellence in and access to the creation, experience and active support of the arts for all the people of our community. For more information call 919.560.ARTS or visit our website at