Things to Do in Greensboro NC
A trip to Greensboro means never hearing “I’m bored.” Around every corner is something to see or learn. From wild animals to wild fun, an adventure is waiting you in the Triad.
Guilford Courthouse National Military Park On March 15, 1781, a watershed Revolutionary War battle was fought at Guilford Courthouse, in what is now Greensboro, North Carolina. The American forces, led by General Nathanial Greene, fought valiantly against British troops led by Lord Cornwallis. This battle was significant to American independence, as it depleted the strength of the British forces, which surrendered to George Washington at the battle of Yorktown later that year.
The battlefield site is now beautifully preserved as the Guilford Courthouse National Military Park. In 1917, this became the first Revolutionary War battlefield in the United States to be protected by the Federal government. Visitors can now visit the battlefield and adjoining museum, experience the battle via an annual reenactment, and also enjoy the picturesque park grounds that feature historic monuments, as well as extensive walking and biking trails. Learn more at www.nps.gov/guco/index.htm.
Green Hill Center For NC Art Green Hill Center for NC Art is the only non-collecting organization dedicated to presenting, promoting and advocating contemporary visual art and artists of North Carolina. Since its founding in 1974, Green Hill Center has presented and sold artwork of over 9,700 visual artists and engaged nearly 1 million visitors through free access through The Gallery, ArtQuest and The Shop. Each year, Green Hill Center for NC Art presents five exhibitions, curated to provide opportunities for North Carolina artists at every stage of their career. ArtQuest, a program of Green Hill Center, is an inspiring hands-on studio designed by North Carolina artists where creativity is nurtured through the open exploration of art and art materials. Green Hill Center exhibitions showcase the best in NC Contemporary art and draw audiences through dynamic programmatic choices. Exhibitions run approximately two months and are open six days a week. For a schedule of exhibitions and associated programming visit www.greenhillnc.org.
Greensboro Children’s Museum The Greensboro Children’s Museum (GCM) is a hands-on, interactive museum for children, their families and teachers. The Museum is designed to inspire learning through play in a fun, energetic and safe environment for children up to 10 years of age. The 37,000-square-foot facility in downtown Greensboro includes over 20 permanent hands-on exhibits in “Our Town” and a new outdoor Edible Schoolyard that are designed to stimulate children’s imaginations and provide educational play experiences. It’s where play is a smart adventure! Learn more at www.gcmuseum.com.
Triad Stage & Carolina Theatre In the heart of downtown Greensboro, you’ll find two theatres that rival ones you would find in our country’s biggest cities. One holds a place in our city’s history, opening more than 85 years ago; the other, in its infancy has already garnered national attention. The Carolina Theatre welcomes nearly 90,000 visitors downtown every year to enjoy the rich atmosphere and ambiance of an earlier era, while enjoying some of today’s top performers. She has been home to the Greensboro Ballet, Community Theatre of Greensboro, Greensboro Opera, and other local performing arts groups. Civic groups, businesses, and individuals also rent the facility for seminars, meeting, receptions and even weddings. In 1999, the co-founders of Triad Stage set out to create a professional, not-for-profit regional theater to serve the communities of the Triad. Triad Stage has more than 3,000 season pass holders and more than 400 annual donors. The company has received accolades on national, state and local levels.
North Carolina Zoo About 30 minutes south of Greensboro is America’s largest walk-through zoo and the first zoo designed from its inception around the “natural habitat” philosophy—presenting animals and plants in exhibits that closely resemble the habitats in which they would be found in the wild. Among the most popular exhibits are those that display elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees, baboons, rhinoceros, giraffes, zebras, seals, river otters and alligators. The 37-acre African Plains exhibit alone is as large as many entire zoos. The 11-acre Prairie exhibit in the North American region showcases the zoo’s collection of bison and elk. In spring 2014 the polar bears, always popular with visitors, will move into one of the largest polar-bear exhibits in the nation. The North Carolina Zoo is open year round except Christmas Day. For additional information, visit the zoo’s Web site at www.nczoo.org or call 1-800-488-0444.
The Greensboro Science Center
There is a moment after you enter when you realize this place is something special. The Greensboro Science Center is more than a museum, more than a zoo and more than a theater. It’s a place of unlimited adventure where the doors are wide open for discovery.
If you haven’t visited the Greensboro Science Center (formerly known as the Natural Science Center of Greensboro) lately, you are missing out. What was once just a small nature center and petting zoo a mere 10 years ago is now a thriving, accredited, state-of-the-art science museum, zoo and full dome theater that is setting attendance records year after year. It is one of only 14 institutions nationally accredited by both the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the American Alliance of Museums and has recently been selected to be a model for other museums and zoos around the country.
The Carolina SciQuarium is North Carolina’s first center-of-state aquarium and the first to be LEED-certified. It features popular and high profile water-dwelling endangered species like penguins, sharks, otters, eels, stingrays and fishing cats and be interspersed with interactive “SciPod” learning stations. Visitors are immersed in an undersea world where they can touch live stingrays, get nose to beak with penguins and engage with animal keepers and educators to learn about the amazing animals that reside here. Visitors can also take behind-the-scenes tours focusing on the science of animal care and water quality management and experience penguin encounters.
Inside the Greensboro Science Center’s museum, there are dozens of hands-on interactive exhibits for visitors of all ages. The HealthQuest exhibit is unlike any human health and biology experience in the nation. It combines 21st century medical science with state-of-the-art videography, real preserved human bodies, and over a hundred ‘kid-cool’ interactives like a giant nose that sneezes on you. The Extreme Weather Gallery offers visitors a chance to feel the wind force of a category five hurricane and touch simulated lightning panels. Toddlers can enjoy imaginative play and explore the wonders of nature indoors in Kids’ Alley. Visitors who are brave enough can come face-to-face with a 36-foot roaring T-Rex in Dinosaur Gallery and touch bearded dragons, black rat snakes, and other reptiles in the Herpetarium lab.
The Center’s OmniSphere Theater, one of the most technically sophisticated domed theaters in the nation, offers unique visual experiences for adults and children. New full-dome and eye-popping 3D shows projected onto the 40-foot, 360-degree dome ceiling take visitors on a virtual journey through the universe to marvel at planets and stars in our wondrous solar system or deep under the ocean on imaginary adventures with a friendly sea turtle or giant sea monsters.
For visitors who like interactive experiences, the public shows in the Center’s remodeled Adventure Theatres are a big hit. Audience members help Indiana Bones solve riddles to stop the evil Dr. Dean O. Saur from taking over Animal Discovery Zoo in “Indiana Bones and the Kingdom of the Camarasaur.” “KATS: The Meerkat Musical”, another popular show, magically “transports” visitors to the Kalahari Desert where an adorable meerkat pup and her family tell an inspirational story about their lives through song. Both shows are extraordinarily unique and are included with general admission.
Animal Discovery Zoological Park offers up-close encounters with wild and endangered animals like tigers, monkeys, crocodiles, maned wolves, meerkats, lemurs and wallabies. The zoo spans over 12 acres and features beautiful nature trails, “dancing” fountains and climbing structures for kids. In the Zoo’s Discovery House and farmyard, visitors can pet friendly animals like bunnies, ferrets, goats, sheep, alpacas and miniature horses. With the planned expansion in the next five years, Animal Discovery will double in size and likely add more fascinating animals like orangatans, tree kangaroos, komodo dragons and pygmy hippos.
Once the Master Plan is complete, the Greensboro Science Center will be the only attraction of its kind in the nation to offer an accredited science museum, zoo, OmniSphere theater and aquarium in one destination.
Although it started as a small neighborhood science center 55 years ago, the Greensboro Science Center is well on its way to become a signature national tourist attraction that is not to be missed in Greensboro. Whether you’re looking for an adventurous family outing, a casual date option or just something different to do, the Greensboro Science Center is worth a visit!
For more information on the Greensboro Science Center, visit greensboroscience.org.
International Civil Rights Center and Museum
Greensboro, North Carolina was the center of a movement that forever changed the United States. The International Civil Rights Center & Museum (ICRCM), located in the former F.W. Woolworth building, was the site of the February 1-July 25, 1960 sit-in protest against segregated eating facilities. That six-month demonstration reignited the civil rights movement that transformed a nation.
Our 17-gallery main exhibition, The Battlegrounds, offers an engaging journey through time as we witness courageous men, women and children who fought caste-like restrictions based on race. Their stories unfold in newsreel footage, photographic documents, video reenactments, high tech interactive components and numerous artifacts—including the iconic “whites only” lunch counter. Moreover, ICRCM’s educational and public programs (lectures, panel discussions, documentary film screenings, book signings and theatrical productions) promote an understanding and appreciation of the struggles for equality, social justice and freedom in the United States and the world.
This historic landmark, exhibiting and collecting institution, and educational service organization opened its doors on February 1, 2010—the 50th anniversary date of the sit-in protest in downtown Greensboro, North Carolina. https://www.sitinmovement.org
The Coliseum Complex is a multi-building facility designed to serve the citizens of Greensboro and the surrounding area through a broad range of activities, including athletic events, cultural arts, concerts, theater, educational activities, fairs, exhibits, and public and private events of all kinds including conventions, convocations and trade and consumer shows. It is both a primary center of activity for the community and a leading economic generator for this region. One of the most actively booked facilities in the country, the Greensboro Coliseum Complex hosted more than 1,000 events last year. With its incredible versatility, the Complex has gained worldwide acclaim from promoters, producers, event planners and patrons.The Greensboro Coliseum Complex consists of the Greensboro Coliseum (with seating capacity over 21,000), 2,400-seat War Memorial Auditorium, 300-seat Odeon Theatre, the 167,000-square-foot Special Events Center that includes three exhibition halls, a 4,500-seat mini-arena and eight meeting rooms, and the 30,000-square-foot Pavilion, located adjacent to the Special Events Center.
ACC Hall of Champions, an 8,100-square-foot museum that showcases ACC history through interactive displays, unique institutional exhibits and multi-purpose program space. Highlights include a four-foot, 360-degree, state-of-the-art video globe with a unique, multi-media display of conference highlights, life-size ACC school mascot exhibits that have been a huge hit with younger visitors and an interactive exhibit that lets fans face off in a head-to-head challenge to test their knowledge of ACC sports trivia.
Greensboro Aquatic Center is a 78,323-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility with three bodies of water and a seating capacity of 2,500. GAC brings together major aquatic sports – competitive swimming and diving, water polo, synchronized swimming and other unique sports – all in one venue.
White Oak Amphitheatre is an outdoor venue with a seating capacity of over 7,600, including more than 2,000 reserved seats. White Oak Amphitheatre hosts a diverse selection of community programs, music, arts and crafts and festival type events.
The Terrace is a 12,900-square-foot banquet facility ideal for hosting speaking engagements, hospitality functions and upscale dining events in a luxurious, richly decorated setting.
Want to learn more about the Greensboro Coliseum Complex? Please visit us online at www.greensborocoliseum.com. For ticket information for upcoming Coliseum Complex events please go to www.ticketmaster.com. We look forward to seeing you at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex!