Lifestyle Resources

Arts and Entertainment

Clayton is a burgeoning artists’ community. The visual and performing arts continue to grow as citizens find more reasons to stay in town for entertainment.

The Clayton Center, which features a 600-seat auditorium, was renovated from the former Clayton school buildings into a state-of-the-art performance and conference center. The auditorium is home to a professional performance series that runs between October and May annually. The Center has hosted performances by entertainers such as Kathy Mattea and Doc Watson. The conference Center has quickly become a destination for both the businesses and civic communities around the region, playing host to a broad spectrum of events from weddings to expos to homeowner’s association meetings and religious services.

Blues music is thriving at The Clayton Center. March 2013 marked the return of the popular Blues Bash, which took root during the 2005-2006 Palladian Series, which showcased the talent of local prodigy Daniel “Slick” Ballinger. Also sharing the bill was Ernie Hawkins. Other Blues Bash performers have included Luther “Captain Luke” Meyer, Cook John Ferguson, Beverly “Guitar” Watkins, Johnny Winter, James Cotton, Eric Bibb and Albert White. The auditorium is also rented to local groups for pageants, concerts and presentations. The Conference Center has quickly become a destination for both the businesses and civic communities around the region. It’s also home to visual artist exhibitions throughout the year.

The Johnston County Arts Council (JCAC) is a private, nonprofit arts agency for Johnston County. The council supports quality arts programs and projects throughout the county and within area schools, promotes and sponsors local arts events, and advocates the arts as a part of everyday life in Johnston County. You can visit their website at

Millstock Music and Art Festival, sponsored by the Clayton Visual Arts and the FlipSide restaurant, is held each June and features live music and hand crafted artisan wares. You can visit their website at

The Clayton Downtown Development Association sponsors the Town Square Concert Series the third Thursday of each month from May-September, featuring popular bands. The CDDA also sponsors the Christmas Village & Tree Lighting the Thursday following Thanksgiving. Visit their website at


There’s something for everyone in Clayton and surrounding Johnston County. From the arts to the outdoors, the area offers activities for visitors and citizens of every age.

Local parks and golf courses provide a host of recreational opportunities, while Clemmons Educational State Forest offers educational programs, nature trails, camping, hiking and picnic facilities. The Clayton Center, located downtown on Second Street, is a venue for several performing arts series that bring national touring companies, local concerts and productions to Clayton. It also provides exhibit space for local visual artists.

In the fall, the Clayton Chamber of Commerce sponsors the Clayton Harvest Festival—featuring amusements, an Antique Car Show, Arts and Crafts and many food vendors. The Chamber also sponsors the Clayton Christmas Parade on the second Saturday of December.

Boyette Farms offers visitors on the farm agri-tainment activities plus day visits suitable for small children. The Christmas Lights on the Neuse offers hayrides among the lights down to the Neuse River and don’t forget the Fear Farm. For more information please visit

The Clayton Farm and Community Market opens every Saturday from April to October offering farm-fresh produce, flowers, arts & crafts, local honey, and much more. The Market is located on the Horne Square (348 E. Main St.) at the corner of Lombard and Main Street. Please visit their website at

The Johnston County Visitors Bureau offers information on events and attractions throughout the county. You can visit the Visitors Bureau’s Web site at or call 919-989-8687. A new visitor-focus website is now available for all Clayton and surrounding area businesses at


Clayton residents enjoy a wide range of educational choices, from outstanding public and private schools to internationally recognized universities in the nearby Triangle area such as Duke University, UNC-Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University.

Business Week magazine, one of the world's leading business publications, has rated Clayton's schools among the top in the U.S. and ranked the town in the top 10 of the country's most affordable places for families to live and assure a top education for their children.

Johnston County Schools is comprised of 44 schools that serve over 33,000 students from pre-kindergarten through grade 12. The Clayton area includes: West Clayton Elementary, East Clayton Elementary, Cooper Elementary, Powhatan Elementary, Riverwood Elementary and River Dell Elementary schools, which serve grades K-5; Clayton Middle School, Archer Lodge Middle School and Riverwood Middle School, which serve grades 6-8; and Clayton High School, Corinth Holders High School and Cleveland High School, serving grades 9-12. year. All schools are accredited by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges.

Johnston County Schools strive to create an atmosphere of communication among students, faculty and the community, in order to encourage the development of well-rounded students, taking into account social responsibility, diverse teaching methods and practical considerations. As a result of their aggressive efforts, Johnston County Schools rank in the top 20 percent of North Carolina schools, with an average SAT above the national average. The schools in Clayton also serve as the home to many National Board Certified faculty. For more information, call the Johnston County Schools Central Office in Smithfield at (919) 934-6031 or visit them at

Johnston Community College, located about 10 miles east of Clayton in Smithfield, is part of the North Carolina Community College System. It has an enrollment of approximately 6,000 and offers a wide variety of associate degree programs. You can learn more about JCC at

The Small Business Resource Center is located at the Johnston County Workforce Development Center in Clayton. The Center’s mission is to support the entrepreneur in starting a business and to provide assistance to business owners in being more successful. The Center does this by offering training, counseling and information services to the general public at no charge. The Small Business Center works with the local Chambers of Commerce, professional organizations and other governmental agencies to provide training at a low or at no cost to the general public. Counseling is by appointment and is provided at no charge by calling (919) 209-2015.

There are many other colleges, universities and technical schools within commuting distance of Clayton, including Campbell University, North Carolina Central, Louisburg College, Barton College, Peace College, Saint Mary’s, Shaw University, Meredith College and St. Augustine just to name a few.


Need an MRI, stitches or cataract surgery?

You can now get a diagnostic test, emergency care and same-day surgery all in one convenient location: on the beautiful campus ofJohnston UNC Health Center. You’re busy enough with everyday life. Isn’t it nice to know that many of the health care services you need are now within minutes of where you live?

Emergency care

The Emergency Department is open round the clock and staffed with board certified emergency physicians.  The department has two triage rooms where nurses assess patients’ conditions. Ten private treatment rooms are equipped to handle general emergencies, and four observation rooms will accommodate patients who need extended stays.

Outpatient surgery

The surgical services include general surgery, ophthalmology, gynecology, orthopedics and otolaryngology. Equipped with the latest technology, the Ambulatory Care and Surgery Unit has two operating rooms and 14 staging and recovery rooms. Patients recover from sedation in a post-anesthesia care unit designed for comfort and privacy.

Diagnostic tests

The diagnostic imaging services include CT scans, digital mammography, X-rays, ultrasound and a wide-bore MRI to accommodate patients who may have a fear of confined spaces. They have included a separate, private area for women who are waiting for mammograms and ultrasounds.

Laboratory services

The clinical laboratory has a blood bank and offer services such as phlebotomy, hematology, blood and urine analysis, and testing for strep throat. The staff will process orders from referring physicians and other departments within the medical center.

Easy access

Johnston Medical Center-Clayton is easy to find on N.C. 42 West between the intersection of Amelia Church Road and the U.S. 70 Bypass of Clayton. Parking is plentiful, and a large metal canopy at the medical center’s entrance will shelter patients and visitors as they arrive. On the same site, a three-story office building for doctors and specialists is now open.

In 2009, JMC-Smithfield was expanded and renovated with the completion of a $62 million five-story patient tower that includes 101 patient suites, a larger cafeteria, modern operating rooms and a new intensive care unit.

JMC-Smithfield is accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. With more than 200 physicians on staff, the hospital provides such medical specialties as internal medicine, gastroenterology, general surgery, mammography, cardiology, urology, physical therapy, nuclear medicine, pediatrics, pulmonology, orthopedics, radiology, psychiatry, endoscopy, obstetrics and gynecology. Its 24-hour emergency department has physician coverage at all times.

• 101 private suites with futon for overnight guests

• Modern intensive care unit (ICU); state-of-the-art operating rooms

• Advanced technology, including 64-slice CT scanner,

digital mammography

• Comfortable front lobby, charming gift shop, lovely chapel, colorful food court

The hospital is in partnership with Duke University Health Systems in operating the Summit Surgical Center and Summit Rehab Center in Clayton. It also sponsors a variety of activities that promote community education and well-being for all ages. Other agencies under the JMH umbrella include the Johnston Family Care Centers in Kenly and McGee’s Crossroads and a QuikMed Urgent Care Center in Garner. For more information about the hospital, call (919) 934-8171.

Clayton also is home to a satellite medical office of WakeMed (a major Raleigh hospital) and a number of family and specialty physicians, dentists, optometrists, chiropractors, urgent care, physical therapists and assisted-living centers.

Johnston County offers many healthcare options, while the Triangle area is home to several large medical centers that provide extensive primary and specialty healthcare, including Duke University, WakeMed, Rex Healthcare and UNC Chapel Hill hospitals.


The Clayton Parks and Recreation Department offers year-round programs for all age groups. Youth and adult athletic leagues, special events (including the annual Fourth of July celebration) and a wide variety of self-improvement classes are offered.

Clayton Community Center, located at 715 Amelia Church Road, is a new 32,000 square foot facility that offers a full size gymnasium with basketball and volleyball programs for all age groups. Above the gym floor is a cushioned track that is available for walking or jogging any time the facility is open. Also in the Center are dedicated rooms for pottery, arts, and multi-purpose floor for exercise, dance, and martial arts classes. A variety of classes and camps are held in the facility throughout the year. Registrations for youth and adult athletic programs are also held at the Center.

Parks and Recreation also maintains several public parks. Clayton Community Park on Amelia Church Road is a 42-acre park that has multiple recreation opportunities. Included are a field house, picnic area and playground, championship tennis courts, three softball and youth soccer fields and a paved trail for hiking, jogging and biking. Municipal Park on Stallings Street features a volleyball court and horseshoe pits, as well as a playground, a basketball court, a tennis court, a ball field and a picnic and shelter area. Legend Field, located on City Road, provides a baseball and softball field and a premier mountain bike trail that is popular with riders in Clayton and throughout the Triangle area. Front Street Park has a playground area and a basketball court.

East Clayton Community Park is a 66 acre park on Glen Laurel Road. The park has a regulation baseball and soccer fields along with a large multi-purpose field. There is a one mile walking trail, playground, picnic shelter, disc golf course and a dog park located there. There will also be a Universal Playground coming soon.

Sam’s Branch Greenway is a 1.5 mile paved trail accessible by a trailhead located on O’Neil Street. The Greenway Trail links Clayton to the Mountains-To-Sea Trail being constructed along the Neuse River. The Mountains-To-Sea Trail is a statewide project that when completed will be a 1,000 mile trail from Clingmans Dome in the Great Smokey mountains to Jockey’s Ridge on the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

For more information on Parks and Recreation programs and facilities, call (919) 553-1550 or visit them at

The Johnston County YMCA is a program branch that provides childcare programs such as after-school, summer day camp, and sports in Johnston County, including the Clayton, Cleveland, Smithfield, and McGee’s Crossroads Area. If you are interested in fitness or aquatics, please check out our YMCA facility branches in the Wake County area. The Johnston County YMCA is currently running programs in area schools, churches and municipal fields. Call (919) 773-3621 for more information.

Clayton boasts several fine golf courses, including Pine Hollow Golf Course, The Neuse Golf Club and Riverwood Golf and Athletic Club. Two other championship golf courses—River Ridge and Eagle Ridge—are just minutes away.

Clayton also is in close proximity to the ballpark for the Mudcats (Cleveland Indian affiliate) minor league baseball team; Jordan Lake, Falls Lake, Harris Lake and Kerr Lake recreation areas for fishing, boating and water sports; the North Carolina coast and other attractions around the Triangle area. For information concerning North Carolina tourism please visit

Shopping & Dining

Clayton offers shoppers a wide range of retail and service centers throughout town. Along U.S. Business 70, shopping options range from large discount retailers to small specialty, jewelry and clothing shops. Hair and nail salons, day spas and other professional services are readily available, as are a variety of restaurants. Shoppers will find new and used furniture, women’s clothing, home interiors and more tucked in the shopping centers that line the major thoroughfare.

Clayton also features a vibrant downtown shopping district. Along Main Street and the surrounding streets, shoppers can find gifts, an art gallery, art frame shop, new furniture, jewelry, printing services, garden and office supplies, cake decorating and party supplies, hair and nail supplies, restaurants and professional offices.

Dining options in Clayton continue to grow. The town boasts a wide variety of establishments from fine dining to fast food to ethnic cuisine; there is something for everyone.

Working Here

The business climate in Clayton is diverse, with major industries working alongside hundreds of small businesses and companies to offer a variety of products and services.

With industrial expansion and rapid residential growth, Clayton continues to be a prosperous town in which to live and work. Both the Clayton Town Council and the Johnston County Economic Development Office are proactive in recruiting new businesses of all types to the area. Information about local economic development can be obtained through the Town of Clayton at (919) 359-9349- or the Johnston County Economic Development Office at (919) 989-5001.

The Clayton Chamber of Commerce is a nonprofit organization that offers programs and opportunities for its members to improve their business. Our offices are located at 301 E. Main St. in downtown Clayton. It is a resource for information about Clayton and assists in recruiting new businesses to the area. For more information, contact the Chamber at (919) 553-6352 or visit us at

Doing Business

Welcome to the one fastest growing municipalities in the one fastest growing counties in the State of North Carolina. Why is Clayton, formerly and for generations a small crossroads community, now the source of so much interest? The answer is simple. We offer what everyone is looking for.

Entrepreneurs like the progressive and cooperative spirit shared by business and civic leaders.

Families like the secure feeling of living in a close knit, neighborly atmosphere with community schools and abundant recreational and cultural activities

Clayton enjoys prominence as a hub for high tech industry including major bio-pharmaceutical companies such as Grifols, Hospira, Inc., and Novo Nordisk, the world’s largest manufacturer of diabetes related products. In total more than ten percent of all bio-pharmaceutical jobs in North Carolina exist in Clayton. Never satisfied with a good thing, Johnston County and the Town of Clayton have partnered with North Carolina State University to create The Workforce Development Center where in-service and prospective employees of the ever growing bio-pharma industry can achieve advance training and applied degrees

Other Major corporations that call Clayton home include Coca Cola, Smithfield Packing Company, Caterpillar, Baker Thermal, Automated Rolls of North Carolina, PCX, and Natvar.

The Clayton business community is very diverse and evolving to meet the needs of a growing residential base.

The Clayton Chamber
of Commerce
would like
to extend our
thanks & appreciation
to all of our

Chamber Champions:
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