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Events & Festivals
The Party Never Stops in Virginia!
Virginia is hopping year-round, and there’s an event or festival which takes place in nearly every corner of the state. In April, the Virginia Arts Festival brings top-name performers to the coast and Hampton Roads area. You can see commissioned works and unforgettable performances. Art of a different sort is the theme of the Virginia International Tattoo Festival – this annual event held in Norfolk is an exhibition of military bands, drill teams, Celtic dancers, and pipe and drum ensembles – there’s nothing else like it in America!
Stop by Charlottesville in April for the Tom Tom Founders Festival, which has concerts, symposiums, and public art displays. The Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival has been going on for more than 90 years – it’s held at the end of April and the beginning of May each year in Winchester.
Spring goes into full gear in May when Richmond hosts Dominion Riverrock – a three-day riverside experience of craft beer, great food, good music, and outdoor adventure.
The state really comes alive in the summer. The Shenandoah Valley Music Festival starts in July and does not end until September – it’s the region’s longest-running outdoor music festival. FloydFest is the spot come July for five days of music and art in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Nearby in Galax, the world’s largest and oldest fiddlers’ convention is held at the beginning of August. Those who enjoy slower music should not miss the Richmond Jazz Festival – it’s one of the nation’s best!
Music, camping, food, and outdoor sports combine to make the Lockn’ Music Festival in Arrington a can’t-miss event. Head to Virginia Beach over Labor Day Weekend for three sun-filled days of the American Music Festival – you can hear jazz, rock, country, R&B, and more. Other great summertime events include Peace Love RVA, the Graves Mountain Festival of Music, the Ashland Strawberry Faire, and the Louisa Street Festival.
Fall is perhaps the most beautiful time of year in Old Dominion – crisp days, chilly nights, and vibrant foliage bring out the best of the state. The Virginia Film Festival in Charlottesville showcases celebrated new features and documentaries. Fire, Flour, & Fork in Richmond is a four-day culinary event – you won’t go home hungry! The state’s favorite seafood is celebrated in Urbanna at the Urbanna Oyster Festival, and other great fall events include the Beer & Wine Classic in Richmond, Taste of the Mountains Main Street Festival in Madison, and the Appomattox Oyster and Seafood Festival.
The state has a great wine-making tradition, and there are festivals celebrating it. The Virginia Wine Expo goes down in Richmond at the end of February and beginning of March, and the Annual Winter Wine Festival is a big deal each year in Staunton. The Clarksville Lake Country Wine Festival helps kick off spring and the Spring Wine Festival & Sunset Tour in Mount Vernon rounds out May.
Things don’t slow down in the winter. Wild Wolf Brewing in Nellysford hosts a wild bingo party and Floyd’s Winer Concert Series is the highlight of the winter at Chateau Morrisette Winery. Wintergreen has plenty of snowy events over President’s Day Weekend, while those who don’t mind cold water show up at the Urbanna Chili Plunge.
Near Christmas, brew up a mug of hot chocolate and head out to see the state’s best light displays. Christmas Illuminations at Mount Vernon are spectacular, and the star party at the Virginia Living Museum in Newport News is worth staying up for. Yorktown’s holiday parade is on water – who can pass up a lighted boat parade? High Country Lights in Galax showcases the best displays in the mountain and if you are in Rocky Mount you won’t want to miss the Come Home to a Franklin County Christmas.
More major Civil War battles took place in Virginia than in any other state, and you can learn more about those days at battle re-enactments. You might enjoy the Town of Buchanan Civil War History Weekend, held each April, or Mount Vernon’s Revolutionary War Weekend, which is in May. Other major re-enactments include the Battle of Bristoe Station in October, the Battle of Hampton Roads in March, and the Civil War Re-enactment at Locust Grove in November.
So, whether you are interested in history war re-enactments, regional film, thrilling mountain biking, rock and roll, or simply gathering with 100 of your closest friends and diving into an ice-cold lake, Virginia has something going on just for you. Come celebrate with us!
Enjoy these popular events in Virginia
Dulles Expo Center
Set in Fairfax County, the Dulles Expo Center serves northern Virginia as well as the Washington D.C. metropolitan area. Set along the Dulles Toll Road – and located near the Dulles International Airport – the facility is ideal for trade shows and consumer events.
Found between Manassas and Fairfax City, the Dulles Expo Center covers 100,000 square feet, and 1,200 parking spots – all free of charge.
State Fair of Virginia
Virginians know how to have fun. Each year, the State Fair of Virginia promises to be a fun way to celebrate summer. Since 2009, the State Fair is held at the Meadow Event Park, in Doswell. The 360-acre Meadow Event Park is the home of Meadow Stables, where the famous racehorse Secretariat was born. The event center is comprised of a 10,000 square foot exposition hall, a 143 stall horse barn, a 75,000 square foot exposition hall and additional equine facilities.
This Richmond area tradition features carnival games, rides, delicious barbecue food, concerts, agricultural exhibits and competitions, livestock exhibitions and competitions and historical exhibits. The Better Living Center features the arts and crafts displays, while the Technology Expo features the state's technological achievements. Kids love spending time with the animals in the Young McDonald's Farm. Stay close to the fairgrounds, in a comfortable Best Western guest room and enjoy a wonderful night's rest.