With the summer in full swing, July is the perfect time to get out, enjoy the warm weather and experience the lively local community that surrounds you. From the Fourth of July to family vacations, there are plenty of reasons to celebrate throughout the month, but your community probably has a couple unique reasons of its own. Find out what your community is celebrating this summer by checking out the festivals, concerts and events happening downtown each weekend. We’ve started the search for you by finding some of the most interesting local festivals taking place across the country this July.
Sailfest New London
July 11-13, 2014
New London, Connecticut
Sailfest celebrates New London’s coastal location by bringing people downtown to the water’s edge. The event features tours of historic Tall Ships, streets lined with local vendors and the fourth largest firework display in the Northeast. This annual event attracts more than 300,000 people each year over the course of a weekend, showing them the coastal charm that makes New London a vibrant place to live and visit.
Sherwood Robin Hood Festival
July 18-19, 2014
Locals and visitors to the Portland area of Oregon can look forward to the 61st annual Robin Hood Festival in Sherwood. The festival, complete with medieval reenactments, live entertainment and a castle-building contest, makes the quaint town of Sherwood look more like the elusive Sherwood Forest, Robin Hood’s stomping ground in English folklore. But it’s not all fun and games – the festival also awards a $500 scholarship to a local student. For more information or to get involved in the merriment, visit www.robinhoodfestival.org.
NewBo City Market’s BBQ & Brew Competition
July 19, 2014
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
When local BBQ masters and craft brewers compete, the town of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is the real winner. Now in its second year, the BBQ & Brew Competition showcases the best local food and drink in a downtown hub known to local foodies as NewBo City Market. A team of local critics will actually judge the competition, but members of the local public can sample whatever they want for a flat rate. It’s a local foodie’s dream, and it’s expected to draw a crowd of more than 5,000 attendees.
Customer Appreciation BBQ
July 22, 2014
Local businesses serve the community in countless ways, but they couldn’t do it without the help of loyal customers. For one evening in July, the local businesses and restaurants of Brush, Colorado will come together to throw their customers a party to thank them for their continued support. Members of the local community can enjoy dinner and live entertainment for free at this event organized by the Brush Chamber of Commerce, local businesses and other like-minded organizations.
National Day of the Cowboy Celebration
July 26, 2014
Each year, the National Day of the Cowboy Celebration takes Sedona back to the days of the Wild, Wild West. This free event features live music and all-day activities like a costume contest and storytelling. And, of course, no country western celebration would be complete without quick-draw reenactments.
Even if you can’t make it to any of these festivals and celebrations, your community probably has an event planned that’s just as unique. If you’re traveling somewhere new this July, check for community events in that area as well. Finding local festivals and celebrations is the easiest way to make the most of your community or get to know a new community this summer.