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The Group Travel Leader Going on Faith Select Traveler

Eat, play, groove in downtown Raleigh

Downtown Raleigh has come alive since the Greater Raleigh Convention Center opened in 2008. Fifteen minutes from the Umstead, it boasts a big-city selection of entertainment venues, restaurants and nightspots.

Downtown, dinner can be upscale white linen or down-home North Carolina barbecue, followed by musical experiences as varied as Raleigh’s menus.

“We’re positioning ourselves as North Carolina’s capital of live music,” said Ryan Smith, director of communications for the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau. “Raleigh now offers live music from the symphony to rock bands to bluegrass at least three nights a week in venues from restaurants to amphitheaters.”

In September, bluegrass will be the star as the International Bluegrass Music Association holds its annual five-day World of Bluegrass at the Greater Raleigh Convention Center. Attendees can walk to evening performances near downtown host hotels or take a five-minute ride on the free downtown circulating R-Line bus to the various stages.