Let your imagination soar during the annual Cape Fear Kite Festival, a Kure Beach fall tradition occurring the first weekend of November. Whether you light up the night sky or watch a daytime display of colorful kites, you’ll find this free, three-day festival sets the scene for reconnecting with friends and family while enjoying high-flying fun on the naturally beautiful beach.
Illuminate the Night
Kick off your festival experience Friday evening with the spectacular Night with Kites in nearby Carolina Beach. Grab your glow sticks and gather at the beachfront of the Courtyard by Marriott Carolina Beach to watch the night sky transform into a cascade of light and color from LED-powered kites.
Sky Art, Local Vendors and Live Music
Following Night with Kites, the festival continues Saturday and Sunday for two more days of celebration at Fort Fisher State Recreation Area from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Watch serious kite flyers from across the country exhibit sky art of all shapes, sizes, styles and colors as giant and sport kites catch the wind. As the final event of the professional kite-flying season, Kure Beach’s soaring parade promises a truly grand finale.
The Cape Fear Kite Festival’s family-friendly entertainment goes beyond just kite-watching. Venture to various on-site food trucks and stands to get a taste of local cuisine and refreshing beverages from the area’s breweries. Throughout the event, enjoy music from live bands. Little ones can unleash their creativity at the face painting station and kite-decorating tent.
Festival parking is available at the Blakeslee Air Force Recreation Area with a shuttle traveling back and forth between the festival grounds. Event signage and volunteers will direct attendees to proper parking spots in designated areas.
Dine and Unwind
Be sure to fuel up for action-packed festival days. Start your morning at Ocean View Restaurant with delicious options like the sweet and savory Breakfast Charcuterie and the special Kure Benedict, a handmade biscuit topped with country ham, fried eggs, hollandaise sauce and crab meat. Stop by Happy Hippies Java Hut for the signature coffee potion by the ocean, Mermaid Magic, featuring espresso and hazelnut.
When the festivities wind down, visit one of Kure Beach’s restaurants for dinner. Savor Caribbean-inspired fare at Jack Mackerel’s Island Grill. If you're craving authentic Italian cuisine, head to Freddie’s Restaurant for a delightful selection of pasta dishes, pork chops and other mainstays paired with featured wines – and save room for tiramisu or cannoli.
Take your pick from a variety of accommodations, from vintage inns to oceanfront vacation rentals, conveniently located near the festival and all this charming beach town offers.
Satisfy your curious side with a Kure Beach getaway during the annual, all-ages Cape Fear Kite Festival. Whether you're a kite enthusiast or a family with young children, this event promises to spark a sense of childlike wonder and create lasting vacation memories.