Haw River Festival

Thank you to all those who came out on May 11, for our 2024 Haw River Festival. Our annual event which is regularly held features great bands, activities, auction, vendors, a Paperhand Puppet parade and food trucks – FREE with donations gratefully accepted to support our work protecting the Haw River! Check out photos from our 2024 festival below!

Have questions? Please email events@hawriver.org.

Sorry – No Dogs Allowed at the Festival

Haw River Activity Locations

Stage: Main Festival Area – with Music Stage, Farmer’s Market, Haw River Assembly booths, silent auction, kayak raffle, food trucks and kids activities.
Kid Canoe Rides: Voyager Canoe rides for kids age 12 and under. Shuttles will begin at 4:00 every 15 minutes until 6:30 to Saxapahaw Lake. Meet at Haw River Canoe and Kayak office behind the Paperhand Puppet Studio.
Puppet Parade: Meet at Paperhand Puppet Studio at 5:30 pm, if you’d like to take part in the Puppet Parade. All are welcome!
Saxapahaw Island: Use the pedestrian walkway on the bridge across the Haw to Saxapahaw Island Park – than follow signs on the island to take part in River Monitoring from 4 – 6 pm. All ages welcome!

Parking Information

If you are wondering where to park, we’re glad to help!

For handicap parking, please be aware that there are only a few of those spots right outside of the Saxapahaw General Store. We recommend arriving early for those spots.

– The main parking meadow of the past is now the new Hawbridge Upper School. There is parking in their lot outside the school.

– Parking is available behind the Saxapahaw Museum in a gravel lot.

– There are new designated parking areas on Pine and Hilltop near and just past the Water Tower.

– There is a small parking area to the right of Paperhand Puppet and Haw River Canoe/Kayak.

– There is a large parking area on Saxapahaw Island (closes at 9pm).

– There is a large parking lot at the Saxapahaw United Methodist Church across the bridge.

**** PLEASE DO NOT PARK IN THE ROAD or in people‚Äôs yards, driveways or blocking residential gates. We love our community and ask that you respect the people who live and work here. They need to be able to feel that their homes and property are not affected by people coming in for the event. Cars parked in any of these spaces or over the white line on the road will be towed. ***We’ve have been warned about this and now you have also.

2024 Kayak Raffle Winner!

Special thank you to Great Outdoor Provision for donating the kayak!

2024 Schedule Of Events

On Stage: (approximate times)  

4:00-4:45 PM Mahalo Jazz

5:00- 5:45 Travis Williams Group

6:00-8:00 PM Big Fat Gap

Around the Festival  

4:30 PM Nature Walk led Harry Phillips (meet on Saxapahaw Island)  

4 – 6 PM River Monitoring and finding river critters (on Saxapahaw Island)

4:00-6:30 PM Short Canoe Rides for kids (12 & under) 

Shuttles over to Saxapahaw reservoir (just up the street) will leave every 15 minutes from the Haw River Canoe and Kayak office. 

5:15 PM Gather to take part in Puppet Parade at Paperhand Puppet Studio. Parade starts at about 5:45 pm.  

4 – 7:15 PM Silent Auction on tables behind the stage. Beautiful arts and  crafts, event tickets, massage certificates and more! Closing bids at 7:15 Check for winning bids and make payment at the auction table. 7:30 PM Raffle Drawing for Kayak $2 ticket on  sale next to the stage. No need to be present to win. 


Silent auction items will be for bid the day of our festival behind the main stage! All proceeds raised from auction items will go towards HRA’s advocacy and education programs. Opening bid for all items is $5.00! Pictured below are items from last year!

2024 Haw River Festival Bands

Mahalo Jazz
Big Fat Gap
The Travis Williams Group