NASHtoday City Guide Play Banner

Summer events happening in and around Nashville

Make the most of the warm weather with outdoor festivities, block parties, live tunes, and holiday-centered activities happening in Music City this summer.

A crowd of people walking forward in a street all dressed in red.

This sea of red can only mean one thing: It’s almost time for Tomato Art Fest. | Photo via Tomato Art Fest

Summer’s here and Nashville is so ready. From live music and Fourth of July celebrations to outdoor movies and festivals, summer is when Music City comes alive.

Festivals and fairs

Nashville Pride Festival | Saturday, June 22-Sunday, June 23 | Times vary | Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park | $10+ | Activities include live entertainment (Tinashe, Billy Porter, G Flip, and more), Nashville Drag EXTRAvaganza, a parade, and vendors.

Butterfly Festival | Saturday, June 1-Wednesday, July 31 | Times vary | Lucky Ladd Farms, 4374 Rocky Glade Rd, Eagleville | $16+ | Get up close and personal with a visit to the butterfly house, watch daily releases, and try out an add-on experience like feeding the creatures.

Editor’s Note: Lucky Ladd Farms was impacted by the May 8 storm, which caused the business to temporarily close. Check the website and social media for dates and availability closer to time.

Sunflower Festival and U-Pick Experience | Thursday, June 27-Sunday, July 14 | Times vary | Lucky Ladd Farms, 4374 Rocky Glade Rd, Eagleville | $15+ | Explore nearly four acres of sunflowers during season (usually 2-3 weeks) and pick your own bouquet via the add-on experience.

Williamson County Fair | Friday, Aug. 2-Saturday, Aug. 10 | Times vary | Williamson County Agricultural EXPO Park, 4215 Long Ln., Franklin | $14+ | New this year are four rides on the midway, as well as six daily entertainment options — like stilt walker Peter Brunette.

Tomato Art Fest | Friday, Aug. 9-Saturday, Aug. 10 | Times vary | Five Points | Free | The motto for the 21st annual event is, “The Tomato: A Uniter, NOT a Divider! — Bringing Together Fruits & Vegetables.”

Tennessee State Fair: Wilson County Fair | Thursday, Aug. 15-Saturday, Aug. 24 | Times vary | James E. Ward Agricultural Center, 945 E. Baddour Pkwy., Lebanon | $15+ | Pro tip: Visit the ticket page for gate admission deal days and carnival ride specials.

Summer Shakespeare | Thursdays-Sundays, Aug. 29-Sept. 22 and Monday, Sept. 2 | 5:15 p.m. | The Yard at oneC1TY, 8 City Blvd. | Free+ | This year’s performance directed by Cammy Harris focuses on one of Shakespeare’s joyful romantic comedies, “As You Like It.”

Crowd sitting and standing on a grassy lawn in front of a large stage

Cheers to 50 years — CMA Fest celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2023. | Photo by NASHtoday

Live music

CMA Fest | Thursday, June 6-Sunday, June 9 | Times vary | Downtown Nashville | Free+ | The annual country music festival enters its 51st year with free performances across five stages, as well as ticketed experiences to see headliners Kelsea Ballerini, Brothers Osborne, Luke Bryan, and more.

Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival | Thursday, June 13-Sunday, June 16 | Times vary | Manchester, TN | $174+ | Headliners include Pretty Lights, Fisher, Post Malone, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Fred Again.

Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman | Thursdays, June 13-July 25 | 7:30 p.m. | Ryman Auditorium, 116 Rep. John Lewis Way N. | $38+ | The 30-year tradition returns to the birthplace of bluegrass music with a six-show series, all preceded by Pickin’ on PNC Plaza.

Bluebird on the Mountain | Saturday, June 29-Saturday, Oct. 12 | 8 p.m. | Vanderbilt Dyer Observatory, 1000 Oman Dr., Brentwood | $210 | Top Bluebird Cafe songwriters play and tell the stories behind their hits as guests enjoy a picnic. One ticket covers a carload of people (up to 8) and tickets often sell out as soon as they are released, so hit that “remind me” button on Eventbrite.

Jazz Under the Stars | Friday, July 19 | 7 p.m. | Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, 1200 Forrest Park Dr. | $65 | The 18-piece Ryan Middagh Jazz Orchestra joins The Dirty Dozen Brass Band for a high-energy evening jazz performance.

Jefferson Street Jazz and Blues Festival | Saturday, July 20 | 5-9 p.m. | Location TBA | $20+ | The 23rd annual festival celebrates the historic jazz, blues, rhythm and blues district that thrived on Jefferson Street in the 1940s through 1960s. Stay tuned for a forthcoming lineup and ticket sales.

Giant troll sculpture with one arm raised and a bag of birdhouses carried over its back in a forest-like setting.

Artist Thomas Dambo has 80+ scultures placed all over the world. | Photo courtesy of Atlanta Botanical Garden via Cheekwood

Family-friendly dates

TROLLS: Save the Humans | Thursday, May 2-Tuesday, Sept. 3 | 9 a.m.-5 p.m. | Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, 1200 Forrest Park Dr. | Cost of admission | Six larger-than-life troll sculptures by artist Thomas Dambo are scattered throughout the grounds.

Kids Fun Construction and Farm Equipment Festival | Saturday, June 1 | 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. | Lucky Ladd Farms, 4374 Rocky Glade Rd., Eagleville | $16+ | Kids can help operate and maneuver real mini-excavators, digging, moving, and dumping dirt. Plus, practice skills of trade with hammers, power drivers, plumbing challenges, and more.

Movies in the Park | Thursdays, June 6-27 | 5 p.m. | Elmington Park, 3531 West End Ave. | Free+ | Stay tuned for the outdoor movie series lineup announcement and look forward to food trucks and games before the film starts at sundown.

“Hairspray” | Tuesday, June 11-Sunday, June 16 | Times vary | TPAC’s Andrew Jackson Hall, 505 Deaderick St. | $51+ | You can’t stop the beat at this Broadway musical of the film by the same name, which includes hit songs “Welcome to the ‘60s” and “Good Morning Baltimore.”

Tales at Twilight | Fridays in July | 6 p.m. | Centennial Park Bandshell, 2500 West End Ave. | Free | The hour-long family performance presented by Metro Parks offers interactive magic, stories, dance, and music.

Hot Wheels Monster Trucks Live Glow Party | Saturday, Aug. 3-Sunday, Aug. 4 | Times vary | Bridgestone Arena, 501 Broadway | $35+ | Start your engines for this live-action performance featuring big trucks.

Judges taste test salsa and pico de gallo for the Tomat-O-Rama competition.

We’re ready for this festival from our head to our toma-toes. | Photo by @nashvillefarmersmarket

Food-focused fun

Summer Teas | Tuesdays and Thursdays, May 2-June 27 | 3-4:30 p.m. | Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, 1200 Forrest Park Dr. | $50+ | Afternoon tea at Café 29 includes tableside service with seasonal teas and traditional sweet and savory bites for two or four guests.

Peach Jam Festival | Saturday, June 15 | 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | Nashville Farmers Market, 900 Rosa L. Parks Blvd. | Free | Expect fresh local peaches, peach drinks for the 21+ crowd, live music, food trucks, peach-themed crafts and specialty foods, face painting, and a kids zone.

Music City Hot Chicken Festival | Thursday, July 4 | 11 a.m.-3 p.m. | East Park, 700 Woodland St. | Free | Dig into Nashville’s delicacy from some of the city’s hot chicken establishments, sip on Yazoo beer, visit other local vendors, and participate in the amateur cooking competition. Don’t miss: The fire truck parade at 10:30 a.m.

Tomat-O-Rama Festival | Saturday, July 13 | 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | Nashville Farmers Market, 900 Rosa L. Parks Blvd. | Free | Celebrate all the varieties of the tomato with bloody marys for guests of age, produce vendors, live music, food trucks, a salsa and pico de gallo contest, tomato-themed crafts and specialty foods, a kids zone, and a photo booth trailer.

Watermelon Festival | Saturday, Aug. 24 | 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | Nashville Farmers Market, 900 Rosa L. Parks Blvd. | Free | Beat the heat with watermelon tastings, produce specials, food trucks, and a DJ spinning tracks.

A group of four people stand in front of a drink vendor as they get refills.

Sip and see species, anyone? You can do just that at Brew at the Zoo. | Photo provided by the Nashville Zoo

Only for ages 21+

Brew at the Zoo | Friday, June 14 | 7:30-10:30 p.m. | Nashville Zoo, 3777 Nolensville Pk. | $85+ | Sip five-ounce samples from 60+ beverage purveyors, listen to live music along the strolling path, and see some animals after dark (closing times vary).

Camp Way Late | Friday, June 14 | 7-10 p.m. | Adventure Science Center, 800 Fort Negley Blvd. | $40 | Explore exhibit galleries and relive your childhood summer camp experience at this after-hours event with food and drink available for an additional cost.

Nashville Predators Craft Beer Festival | Saturday, June 22 | 3:30-7 p.m. | Bridgestone Arena, 501 Broadway | $75+, designated drivers $50 | Your ticket includes unlimited tastings, a five-ounce souvenir glass, and a free balcony-level ticket to a select October or November Predators home game.

NightLight 615 | Thursdays and Fridays, June-Oct. | 7:30-11 p.m. | Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park, 600 James Robertson Pkwy. | $11+ | Buy single tickets or a season pass to see classic flicks and top-rated movies on the big screen while enjoying pre-show beats from a DJ and local food trucks.

Tennessee Wine Tasting Excursion Train | Saturday, Aug. 31 | 9 a.m. | Tennessee Central Railway Museum, 220 Willow St. | $80+ | Enjoy tastings from DelMonaco Winery and Vineyards and visit restaurants and stores around the Watertown square during the excursion layover.

A black classic car sits parked on the Cheekwood grounds

Don’t miss the barbershop quartet at Cheekwood’s classic cars event. | Photo via Cheekwood

Seasonal happenings

Big Band Dances | Saturdays, June-Aug. | 7 p.m. | Centennial Park Event Shelter, 2500 West End Ave. | Free | Cut a rug with swing and jazz favorites and get lessons half an hour before the event starts.

Music City Freedom Festival | Saturday, June 15-Sunday, June 16 | 12-8 p.m. | Hadley Park, 1037 28th Ave. N. | Free+ | The family-friendly festival offers food trucks, local vendors to shop from, inflatables for the kiddos, and live bands.

Exposition of Elegance: Classic Cars at Cheekwood | Saturday, June 15-Sunday, June 16 | 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. | Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, 1200 Forrest Park Dr. | Cost of admission | Cruise to Cheekwood to view classic cars and vintage motorcycles on display from the early to mid-20th century, listen to the sounds of a barbershop quartet, and grab a drink and food from vendors.

Ally 400 | Friday, June 28-Sunday, June 30 | Times vary | Nashville Superspeedway, 4847-F McCrary Rd., Lebanon | $35+ | Start your engines. The weekend kicks off with the Rackley Roofing 200 on Friday and NASCAR XFINITY Series Tennessee Lottery 250 on Saturday.

Let Freedom Sing! Music City July 4th | Thursday, July 4 | Time TBA | Downtown Nashville | Free | Chris Young headlines this year’s event with other performances by Yola, Girl Named Tom, and Blessing Offor. For the first time, expect drone light elements during the fireworks show, synchronized to live music from the Nashville Symphony.

BIG3 2024 Season: Coming In Hot | Sunday, Aug. 11 | 12 p.m. | Bridgestone Arena, 501 Broadway | $51+ | The three-on-three basketball league founded by hip-hop musician and actor Ice Cube comes to a head with playoffs in Music City.

PBR: Nashville Stampede Days | Friday, Aug. 16-Sunday, Aug. 18 | Times vary | Bridgestone Arena, 501 Broadway | $35+ | Join the year one PBR Teams champions on their home dirt as they go head-to-head with their competitors on bucking bulls.

Summer markets

Porter Flea Summer Market | Friday, June 14-Saturday, June 15 | Times vary | The Fairgrounds Nashville, 1813 Nolensville Pk. | $10+ | The indoor event showcases goods from 230+ vendors, including Admiral Row, Knook Ceramics, and Weatherbeard Supply Co. Tickets for the preview event on Friday cost $27 and parking at the venue for both days is $10 cash.

Nashville Flea Market | June 21-23, July 26-28, and Aug. 23-25 | Times vary | The Fairgrounds Nashville, 401 Wingrove St. | Cost of purchase | Themes for each of the weekend dates include: Sunshine and Shopping, Midsummer Market, and Endless Summer.

StateMint Pop-Up Consignment Shop | Tuesday, July 16-Saturday, July 20 | Times vary | The Fairgrounds Nashville, 625 Smith Ave. | Cost of purchase | The adult consignment pop-up for men and women includes major brands like Free People, Everlane, Abercrombie, Zara, AGOLDE, Mother, and Lululemon.

Time Travelers Vintage Expo | Saturday, Aug. 10 | 10 a.m.-5 p.m. | The Fairgrounds Nashville, 625 Smith Ave. | $10+ | Over 100 vendors from across the US come together to sell vintage and retro-inspired clothing, accessories, home goods, handmade items, and more.

Seasonal essentials

  • Tired of losing your sunglasses in the water? These floating sunglasses provide optimal clarity and comfort for all your summer adventures.
  • Shield yourself from the sun while adding a touch of flair to your outfit with one of our hats.
  • This iceless cooler keeps your drinks cold for 7 hours.
Check out our other Guides
We’re highlighting the 30 best parks that Nashville, TN has to offer — complete with sand volleyball courts, spraygrounds, and walking trails.
We’re highlighting the best kid-friendly activities that Nashville has to offer — complete with art projects, animal encounters, and outdoor fun.
From its Walk Score and abundance of businesses to its central location, the Gulch is a prime example of a neighborhood suited to live, work, and play.
We’ve made a concerted effort to orchestrate this roadmap, so you can focus on finding the artists you adore.
Nashville restaurants, cafes, and diners serving up all the eggs, pancakes, mimosas, and other brunch favorites you want to eat.
Learn about the biggest industries and employers in the Nashville metro area with this guide to local business.
Check out spring and flower-themed events happening in and around Music City in this seasonal guide.
From lifting weights, indoor rock climbing, personal training, dance fitness, boxing classes, and martial arts programs — we’ve rounded up 23 gyms and fitness offerings around Nashville.
Nashville has 200+ years of history. In this guide, we’re diving into the city’s oldest streets and how they got their names.
From local restaurants and shops to a focus on outdoor recreation, there’s more to Gallatin than meets the eye.
NASHtoday phone
Good news for Nashville.
Get the best local news & events sent to your inbox each morning, for free.