Williamsburg 2024 Summertime Festivals

Williamsburg 2024 Summertime Festivals

Beginning with the 2nd Sundays festival in mid-May and rolling right into festivities like the weekly Sounds of Summer shows in Yorktown, classic ‘60s bands performing on the Art Museums lawn at Colonial Williamsburg, top-tier lineups at the Hampton Jazz Festival, and celebrations of beer and seafood, the Williamsburg summer events calendar is full of exciting and entertaining options every week. From our Williamsburg bed and breakfast, you’ll be just a short stroll or drive from all the action – perfect for exploring our local arts, music, food, and cultural scene – all of which shine brightly during the pleasant stretch of summer months.

2nd Sundays – Celebrating the Arts Every Month in Williamsburg

Known as “Williamsburg’s Art and Music Festival,” 2nd Sundays celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2024. The monthly event is a community gathering that brings together live music, local artists, and all-around revelry over six downtown blocks. It's a fun-filled afternoon for all ages, and every edition of 2nd Sundays is lively, but Williamsburg comes alive even more when warmer days arrive in May, June, July, and August. One of our most popular Williamsburg summer events, it’s a lovely time to soak in the sunshine while browsing amongst the varied vendors and entertainment.

If you are looking for unique gifts for a special birthday or anniversary, you will discover handmade jewelry, boutique soap, glass-blown art and much more within the artisan areas – you are bound to find something special. As you browse the vendor tents, enjoy some refreshing local Williamsburg-area brews or wines in the beer garden and pick up some delicious eats from food trucks serving everything from wood-fired pizza and Philly cheesesteaks to plates of gourmet seafood.

An experienced music venue booker by trade, festival organizer Shirley Vermillion makes live music a focal point of every 2nd Sunday, featuring musicians who travel from across the state to play on the three main stages, where you may hear a rootsy singer-songwriter followed by a rockin’ local band. There are also storytelling, dance stages, and roaming magicians and jugglers, making for a spirited scene wherever you stroll. If you’re visiting with kids, don’t miss the Author’s Alley, which often has notable children’s authors reading from their books alongside other genre authors that vary every month.

Family Relaxing At Outdoor Williamsburg Summer Events

Williamsburg Summer Events – Planning An Ideal Day Trip to Yorktown

Just a twenty-minute drive away on the banks of the York River, Yorktown – one of the three cities along with Jamestown and Williamsburg that make up the Historic Triangle – puts on a free mini Sounds of Summer music festival every Thursday evening starting in June and running through mid-August. The 2024 season begins on June 6th with upbeat tunes from the 10-piece group, the Uptown Band, who will get the crowd dancing with their soulful repertoire. Catch other acts later in the summer, like ‘90s country from the Nashville Nights Band on June 20th and all your favorite ‘80s covers played by the Deloreans on August 8th. It’s a laidback and family-friendly concert setting, with plenty of room to set up a picnic blanket on the sloping grass and enjoy the tunes while taking in views of the York River, which provides a picturesque backdrop.

Make a full day of it by arriving a few hours before the music starts and taking advantage of Yorktown’s prime location on the water and cultural attractions, all within walking distance of the Sounds of Summer stage. Start with a visit to the Gallery at York Hall, which features different artists every month throughout the summer, with work ranging from watercolors and oil paintings to pine needle baskets and artisan pottery. Then hop on the historic trolley for a 30-minute cruise along the main streets of Yorktown, where you’ll see landmarks like the Victory Monument – a towering 95-foot-high statue commemorating our momentous triumph over the British in the Battle of Yorktown, ending the Revolutionary War. Jump off the trolley (it makes 11 stops throughout town) at Yorktown Beach and relax on the two acres of sandy shores with the river breeze soothing on a hot summer day. Head across Water Street to the Yorktown Pub, a local favorite which has been in business for over 35 years, for a half-dozen York River oysters and grilled crabcakes. Finish with a stroll over to the Sounds of Summer stage for a night of excellent tunes.

Music Legends Take the Stage During Early Summer at Colonial Williamsburg and Hampton Jazz Festival

By late May, the 2024 concert calendar heats up every weekend, beginning in May with the Merchants Square Summer Concert Series. Offered on the first Friday of every month, you will have great entertainment just a five minute walk from our door. Williamsburg Live, our local part of the annual Virginia Arts Festival features back-to-back shows on the lawn in front of the Colonial Williamsburg Art Museums. On June 21st, catch rock and pop legends the Beach Boys performing from their decades-long catalog of hits. As the first night after the summer solstice, their beachy tunes set the ambiance perfectly. The next night, Saturday, June 22nd, Tower of Power another band with endless top-40 hits from their 50+ years of playing, will take the stage and bring catchy funk and soul tunes. Plan to get dinner at Merchants Square before walking over to the outdoor stage. Lawn tickets are just $25.

The following weekend, the Hampton Jazz Festival – one of the original American jazz fests – celebrates its 56th year with three days of jam-packed music on June 28th, 29th, and 30th. The festival takes place just a 30-minute drive south of Williamsburg at the iconic Hampton Coliseum, which has held countless legendary shows over the decades. The first two nights of the fest start at 7:30 pm, and up-and-coming blues star Kingfish Ingram and R&B supergroup Boys II Men headline. Sunday features an afternoon program beginning at 2 pm when jazz phenom Jon Baptiste will lead the proceedings.

Williamsburg Summer Events friends clinking glasses of beers

Celebrating Beer and Seafood in Williamsburg Summer Events

The last weeks of summer offer an early taste of Oktoberfest when Busch Gardens Williamsburg hosts its annual German-themed Bier Fest every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from August 16th-September 2nd, 2024. There are over 120 beers to taste from around the world, including local Williamsburg breweries like the Virginia Beer Company, who will brew a one-of-a-kind Kolsch for the event. Kolsch is a unique German-style lager made with warm-fermenting ale yeast. Between rides on epic coasters like the Verbolten and Alpengeist, which take their inspiration from the German autobahn and the Black Forest, stop in the BrewHaus for beer samples and delicious Oktoberfest foods like Bierwurst sausage, schnitzels, and soft pretzels.

Stay with us and plan your visit around our jam-packed lineup of Williamsburg summer events!

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