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UNC students discuss events they look forward to in Chapel Hill and Carrboro this fall

Halloween on Franklin, 2018
First-year Clayton Covington high-fives people on Franklin Street.

After over a year on hold, many annual events are set to return to Chapel Hill and Carrboro this fall.

Here are just a few examples of the festivities students can attend around town.

Carrboro Music Festival

The Carrboro Music Festival aims to make all genres of music more accessible and showcase the talent of local performers. In previous years, the festival featured bluegrass, folk, jazz, country, rock and roll, classical and music from around the world.

Carly Rauch, a rising sophomore at UNC, said she was excited to see the variety of music at the festival.

"We didn't have as much to do last fall because of COVID," Rauch said. "I'm excited for all the things going on around Chapel Hill this fall now that the pandemic is dying down."

This year marks the 24th anniversary of the festival. It is scheduled to take place on Sunday, Sept. 26, with kickoff events the day before. All performances are free.

Festifall Arts Festival

The Festifall Arts Festival brings local artists, vendors and musicians to West Franklin Street, where they can sell their creations. 

Rachel Donnan, a rising sophomore at UNC, said she is excited to see the art of the Chapel Hill and Carrboro area come to life.

"I think the street art in Chapel Hill is super cool, so I'm excited to see the local artists come together," Donnan said.

In past years, Festifall featured live music and interactive performances and was free for all guests. The date for this year's event has not been announced, but residents can sign up to receive more information here.

Film Fest 919

Film Fest 919 brings a curated selection of independent cinema to Chapel Hill. For five days straight, films will be shown in local theaters and can be viewed either independently or with a festival pass.

Previous films played at Film Fest 919 have gone on to win Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The event is set to be held from Oct. 19-23 this year.

Halloween on Franklin Street

This tradition was canceled last year due to the pandemic, but 2021 should once again see Franklin Street flooded by zombies, goblins and ghouls.

Every year, parts of Franklin Street are blocked to traffic to accommodate the crowd of people walking the street to celebrate. In 2018, about 16,000 people joined the festivities, and the crowd has been even larger in years past.

Though the tradition is not organized by the Town, the decision last year was made to keep the street open in order to discourage the forming of large crowds. With pandemic restrictions easing this year, students can expect Franklin Street to be crowded once again.

Katie Weber, a recent UNC graduate, said Halloween was a great way to connect with the town and with other students.

“I've always loved walking down Franklin on Halloween," Weber said. "It's so fun to see all the creative costumes people come up with.”

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