Historic Yates Mill County Park offers public, educational programs for all ages year-round. Visit our Calendar of Events and sign up for our E-Newsletter to stay up to date!
Scroll down or select a program series below to learn more about our offerings:
Search for programs by location, age, date and more!
For a printout of quarterly programs and events, and for a paper copy of the Wake County parks program registration form, refer to the program bulletin below.
The following programs are offered at Historic Yates Mill County Park, 4620 Lake Wheeler Road, Raleigh, NC 27603. For more information, contact the park at 919-856-6675 or email email@example.com
Our staff also offers public programs at Crowder District Park.
Want to see Wake County's last remaining water-powered gristmill in action?
Corn grinding demonstrations with 19th century costumed guides takes place on the third weekend of each month through November. Details are on our Mill Tours
Take a Photo with Santa at the Old Mill
Saturday, December 3, 10 a.m.–noon and 1–3 p.m.
Come have your picture made with Santa inside Yates Mill. While you’re there, play some "reindeer games" in the mill yard, try out a variety of old-time toys, and enjoy some free seasonal refreshments. Also purchase handmade crafts. Photo Packages: $15 and up, depending on photo sizes. A digital image will be $35. Tickets go on sale at 9 a.m. on Dec. 3. Proceeds from the event will benefit Yates Mill Associates' ongoing efforts to keep Yates Mill operating and open to the public.
Wednesday, December 21, 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.
Late dawn. Early sunset. Short day. Long night. For us in the Northern Hemisphere, the December solstice marks the longest night and shortest day of the year. Celebrate this special day by checking out our wayside solstice display, and explore how cultures all over the world celebrate this day with music, food and festive good cheer. For all ages (adult accompaniment is required for all children); fee: FREE. Registration not required. Stop by the Finley Center exhibit hall anytime during the program time.
Free historic trade wayside displays & demonstrations are offered on the third Saturday of each month, March through November, in the mill yard when the mill is open for tours and grinding corn.
Thursday, December 1, 11 a.m.–noon
Children have been playing with toys and using them to learn important skills for thousands of years. Join us to read a story, explore the kinds of toys children play with around the world and make a historic toy to take home. Bring your favorite toy to share with the group. For all ages (adult accompaniment is required for all children); fee: $1/Person. Registration is required.
The Spirit of Giving
Tuesday, December 13, 10 a.m.–noon
Get into the spirit of giving by helping to cut out and assemble warm fleece blankets for children in need (fleece donations are also appreciated). No sewing skills are required! All of the blankets made during this program will be donated to the Project Linus non-profit group (www.projectlinus.org/). By helping out, you'll become a "blanketeer"! For ages 6 & up (adult accompaniment is required for all children); fee: FREE! Registration required.
The Ingalls Long Winter
Monday, December 19
Session 1: 10 a.m.–noon
Session 2: 1–3 p.m.
Laura Ingalls Wilder and her family really had to tough it out. Learn what the family did to survive one especially long winter and find out how the family celebrated Christmas. Taste an old-fashioned peppermint candy stick and bring home a home-made holiday craft. If you want to, come dressed in your best pioneer outfit! For all ages (this program is most appropriate for ages 7 & up; adult accompaniment is required for all children); $2/Person. Registration required.
The First Thanksgiving
Wednesday, November 23, 4:30–5:30 p.m.
Most of us are familiar with the story of the first Thanksgiving. But did you know that it took one woman four decades to earn Turkey Day a spot as a national holiday (during which time the Civil War took place and the U.S. went through five presidents)? Learn Sarah Hale's story and find out how the turkey almost became our national symbol. For all ages (adult accompaniment required for all children); fee: FREE. Registration is not required.
An Orange for Frankie
Friday, December 9, 4:30–5:30 p.m.
The Stowell family is abuzz with excitement, and Frankie, the youngest boy, is the most excited of all. But Pa hasn't returned from his trip and he'd promised to bring back oranges - a holiday treat. Heavy snows might mean no oranges, and, worse, no Pa! Through all this, Frankie learns an important lesson about giving. Come share this heart-warming story written by Patricia Polacco and hear how other people celebrate the winter holiday season. For all ages (adult accompaniment required for all children); fee: FREE. Registration is not required.
Winter Wildlife Survival Skills
Sunday, December 4, 2–3 p.m.
Winter is coming. Learn about seasonal changes in nature and explore how various kinds of wildlife prepare for the cold, as well as what you can do to enhance your own winter survival skills. For all ages (adult accompaniment is required for all children); fee: FREE! Preregistration required.