Bust out the flip-flops, and grab a sweet iced tea—it is summer! With the temperatures rising daily, it is time to head outdoors. Get a taste of down-home flavor through arts and crafts, music, parades, pageantry, food, sporting competitions, live entertainment and much more. Save the date for these upcoming warm weather opportunities to experience the best of the South.
June 29-July 1
43rd Annual 4th of July Powwow
This event features fireworks of another kind… a three-day explosion of authentic Indian music, dancing, food, and festivities. Dance competitions kick off the excitement with over $60,000 in prize money. Spectators travel cross-country to see a powwow as spectacular as this. The ground will erupt in a sea of twirling color at the height of the season. This action-packed weekend includes colorful regalia, jaw-dropping dances, and music made to move you. Experience authentic tribal foods, browse traditional Indian crafts, and get an insider’s look at a rich, ancient culture. Cost is $12. Please note that this event is cash only. Children 6 and under are free.
Fantastic Fourth Celebration
Stone Mountain, GA
Voted the “Best Place to see Fireworks in Atlanta” by Atlanta Journal-Constitution readers, a “Must-See Fireworks Show” by USA Today and one of Reader’s Digest’s picks for “America’s Most Spectacular Fourth of July Fireworks.” Experience Lasershow 2.0, featuring new music, animation, water effects, an immersive laser canopy, and a fleet of robotic drones synced with music in front of the 825-foot mountain face. The special patriotic fireworks finale will immediately follow the Laser Show every night of the celebration!
Gatlinburg River Raft Regatta
Gatlinburg’s popular River Raft Regatta takes place at noon on July 4, on the Little Pigeon River in Downtown Gatlinburg. Anything floatable can be entered starting at 10 a.m. at the Christ in the Smokies bridge on River Road and will end at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies. There are two categories: Trash and Treasure - awards will go to the top three in each category. Additionally, the “Judges Choice” award will go to the most creative “raft.” Awards will also be given to the oldest and the youngest participant. Registration begins at 10 am and the race will start at 12 p.m.
Pensacola Beach Air Show
Pensacola Beach, FL
The roar of the engines, the streamers of smoke, every formation in perfect symmetry. Whether they are flying high at practice or soaring through a spectacular air show, it is always a thrill to see the Blue Angels cut across Pensacola skies. The Pensacola Bay Area is the official home of the Blue Angels, officially known as the U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron. Pensacola Beach hosts a Blue Angels show every July while the Blue Angels host their last show of the season over Naval Air Station Pensacola every November. Once you see the blue and yellow fly, you will never forget it.
39th Annual Natchitoches-NSU Folk Festival
The Folk Festival will host the Louisiana State Fiddle Championship in Magale Recital Hall, which is housed in the CAPA Annex and is located at 140 Central Avenue. Fiddlers from around the state will compete for cash prizes and ribbons. Those who enter the Championship Division will compete for cash prizes and the opportunity to be recognized as the state's best fiddler. The winner will be awarded the title of Grand Champion and will play on the Festival's main stage in Prather Coliseum.
18th Annual Butternut Creek Festival
The Butternut Creek Festival is one of the finest juried arts and crafts show in the southeast. The two-day festival showcases the work of 65 artists and craftsman in categories from basketry, fine art, fabric art, and decorative painting, to glass, jewelry, metalworking, photography, pottery, scrimshaw, and woodturning. Held annually at Meeks Park 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. it is free to enter, along with free parking. You don't want to miss it!
Virginia Lake Festival
LakeFest (as it is known locally) attracts nearly 60,000 visitors to view hundreds of attractions including hot air balloons, arts and crafts, live entertainment including music and dancing, great local and ethnic food, and the traditional ‘Gathering Of The Boats’ and fireworks show! Mark your calendar and make this the year to experience the fun at this annual event.
22nd Annual Dillard Bluegrass & Barbeque Festival
The Dillard Bluegrass & Barbeque Festival started in 1997 and has grown to what it is today through the hard work, dedication, and efforts of many volunteers and BBQ enthusiasts from around the country. Each year people come from across the nation to compete in this once a year event, to listen to authentic Bluegrass music played by numerous bands from all over, and to savor the mouth-watering smells and sights of smoking meats of all kinds. There are always lots to do and things to see for the whole family at this wonderful event. The cooking rigs are a sight to behold, and the vendors serving the many foods and delicacies are some of the best in the world. Make plans to take your vacation in August this year and spend a few days in the North Georgia Mountains. There is nothing like it anywhere. Your kids will love it and once you have been here you will make it a yearly tradition to come back like so many other people do. his is a Georgia Barbecue Championship Qualifier and a World Food Championship Qualifier. All proceeds benefit local charities.
19th Annual Bargains Galore on 64
Great Arkansas bargains! 160 miles of yard sales, antiques, collectibles, and flea markets from Fort Smith past Conway to Beebe, Arkansas. The River Valley of Arkansas is proud to host this Bargains Galore on 64 yard sale extravaganza. This annual event is held on Thursday through Saturday, the second weekend in August. The event draws family vacationers and dealers, buyers and sellers alike, who treasure not only great bargains along Hwy 64 but also the friendly atmosphere and the beautiful vistas that prevail. Join in the fun of selling or buying along this highway of vendors with bargains galore.
FunkFest Beach Party
Virginia Beach, VA
The Virginia Beach FunkFest Beach Party is the heart and soul of this weekend event, featuring music generated over the years by influential legends such as James Brown, Sly and the Family Stone, George Clinton, and The Ohio Players. Funk is an American musical style that originated in the mid-to-late-1960’s when African-American musicians blended soul music, soulful jazz, and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground. Funk music was a major influence on the development of 1970’s disco music and has even influenced house music and hip-hop. This event is free and open to the public.
Celebrating over 34 years, Summerfest is a one-day festival held on the fourth Saturday of August in York and provides entertainment for the whole family. Admission is free! Shop the craft fair, stroll the streets filled with vendors and food trucks. Enjoy the classic car show, 10K, 5K, and fun runs, moonlight bike ride, golf tournament, children’s activities, train rides, climbing wall, inflatables, a health fair for all ages, country music contest, music from several stages and much more.
Louisiana Shrimp and Petroleum Festival
Morgan City, LA
When it comes to matters of tradition, no single day in this event-filled weekend can equal the historical significance of this festival. The keeping of these customs creates a link between the humble origin of the festival in 1936 and the mammoth celebration into which it has grown. The festival recognizes the working men and women of both the seafood and petroleum industries, which are vital to the area. The festivities include a blessing of the fleet and of course loads of food and music.