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Your guide to River City summer events

Make the most of the warm weather with this list of the best local events and activities happening this summer in Richmond.

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Expect live music, sidewalk sales, and fresh fruit at this year’s Watermelon Festival.

Photo by RICtoday

Table of Contents

Summer’s almost here and Richmond is ready. From live music and Brown’s Island festivals to nights at The Diamond and City Stadium, summer is when the River City comes alive.

Get ready to get outside with this guide featuring the biggest summer events — including Fourth of July festivities — happening between May and August.

🎉 Festivals

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The ¿Qué Pasa? Fest is put on by the Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Photo by RICtoday

¿Qué Pasa? Festival | May 4 | Brown’s Island
The yearly fest includes artisans, food vendors, and entertainment in celebration of Hispanic and Latin American cultures.

Riverrock | May 17-19 | Brown’s Island/Riverfront
Rock out at one of the best outdoor sports and musical festivals in the country.

Festival of Arts | May 24-Sept. 21 | Dogwood Dell
Held each summer over several months, the city’s Festival of Arts features free concerts and events on most weekends. Check out this year’s schedule.

Pro tip: Bring a chair or blanket.

Summer Kickoff Festival | June 7-8 | Maymont
The Carriage House Lawn will host Full Moon Fever and Three Sheets to the Wind on Friday, followed by five groups throughout the day on Saturday.

Cozy ol’ Brewgrass Festival | June 20 | Riverside Outfitters
This environmental fest raises funds for Keep Virginia Cozy. Enjoy live music, food, craft brews, and a vendor market.

804 Day | Aug. 2 | 17th St. Market
The first 804 Day block party took place last year. This summer’s follow-up promises more local music, nonprofits, food, and hometown celebrations.

JamPacked Craft Beer & Music Festival | Aug. 10 | Brown’s Island
Greensky Bluegrass will headline this year’s waste-free fest.

Carytown Watermelon Festival | Aug. 11 | Carytown
Celebrate all things watermelon at this classic summer festival with vendors, kids activities, and plenty of refreshing fruit.

Want more festivals? Check out our guide to all the biggest River City parties, all year long.

🎶 Live music series

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Maymont is celebrating the season this year with a Summer Kickoff Festival.

Photo by RICtoday

Friday Cheers | Fridays May-June | Brown’s Island
Get the summer started on the right note. This year’s lineup includes Bella White, Daniel Donato’s Cosmic Country, and Mdou Moctar.

LiVE LOUD Concert Series | Dates vary | Brown’s Island
This Broadberry-produced concert series brings big names to Brown’s Island including Chappell Roan, Faye Webster, and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard this summer.

Groovin’ in the Garden | Dates vary | Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
Jam out in the Garden with special concerts by Carbon Leaf, Drive-By Truckers, Ben Folds, and Rumours ATL.

Virginia Credit Union LIVE! | Dates vary | Richmond Raceway
The summer calendar includes shows by Lee Brice, Cody Jinks, and Lamb of God with Mastadon on the Ashes of Leviathan Tour.

🖌️ First Fridays

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Spend First Fridays on Southside with Manchester Manifest.

Photo via @manchestermanifest

Check out special events around the city the first Friday of each month.

RVA First Fridays | Arts District
Find events along Broad Street including at the Institute for Contemporary Art and Gallery5 in Jackson Ward.

First Fridays at VMHC | Virginia Museum of History & Culture
Get free museum admission and enjoy food trucks, crafts, and cafe deals with the whole family.

Manchester Manifest First Fridays | Hull Street, 11th-14th Streets
This Southside First Friday celebration kicks off in June.

🎨 Arts + culture

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Artisans travel from far and wide to sell their wares at Arts in the Park.

Photo by RICtoday

Arts in the Park | May 4-5 | Byrd Park
The 53rd annual arts and craft show is free to attend and features 350+ exhibitors around the Carillon.

Asian American Celebration | May 4 | Greater Richmond Convention Center
This free cultural fest features vendors and performances from a variety of groups.

Fan Arts Stroll | May 16-17 | Hanover and Grove Avenues
Explore blocks of local art from over 110 artists and enjoy live music and tasty eats from food trucks.

Caribbean American Heritage Festival | June 29 | Dorey Park
Head to Henrico for a celebration with music, food, art exhibits, and traditional crafts.

🛍️ Markets

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Shop from local vendors each Saturday at the Diamond.

Photo via PopUp RVA

PopUp Market RVA | April-October | The Diamond
Shop from a rotating selection of local artisans each week, pick up lunch from a food truck, and enjoy live music.

Swap Meet RVA | Main Street Station
This unique shopping experience takes place each month on a Sunday. For $5 admission, access a vintage retail experience with thrifted threads, jewlery, and more products.

Church Hill Spring Fest & Market | May 11 | Libby Hill Park
This neighborhood celebration will include local vendors, nonprofits, food, drinks, music, and activities for kids.

Planning a shopping spree? We’ve got you covered with our farmers market map and guide to thrift, consignment, and vintage shops in Richmond.

🍽️ Food

Lebanese Food Festival | May 17-19 | Saint Anthony Church
Expect food, drinks, live music, and cultural performances at this long-running festival.

Richmond Greek Festival | May 30-June 2 | Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral
This Richmond tradition has celebrated Greek culture and cuisine for 40+ years.

🎭 Theater + film

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Richmond Shakespeare puts on an annual festival at Agecroft Hall.

Photo by Dave Parrish Photography

Shakespeare Festival | June-July | Agecroft Hall
Richmond Shakespeare will put on “Much Ado About Nothing” and “Doctor Faustus” outdoors at Agecroft this summer.

Want more local theater? Check out our guide to theater companies to see what’s on stage around Richmond.

🎆 Fourth of July

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Tickets to the Fourth of July Squirrels game typically sell out.

Photo by RICtoday

Kickers vs. Forward Madison FC | July 3 | City Stadium
Don’t miss the Red, White, and Roo game against Forward Madison.

Independence Day Celebration | July 4 | State Capitol
The VA250 Commission will celebrate the Fourth by transforming the lawn into a festival ground with music, dance, and spoken word performances.

Flying Squirrels vs. Bowie Baysox | July 4 | The Diamond
Get your tickets early for this Squirrels game and Independence Day Celebration featuring the biggest fireworks show of the year. Pro tip: If you miss out on the game, you’ll still be able to see the show from around the Diamond.

Fourth of July Celebration | July 4 | Chesterfield County Fairgrounds
Last year’s fest included a kids zone, food vendors, live music, and fireworks.

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