Virginia is a renowned destination for music enthusiasts of all genres. The state has numerous family-friendly music festivals that not only celebrate its diverse traditions and communities, but also offer families the opportunity to immerse themselves in various musical styles, educational experiences, delectable food, captivating art, and exciting recreational activities.

From the coastal festivities that honor Virginia’s maritime heritage to the mountainous regions that come alive during summer and fall, Virginia’s musical events provide a festive spirit that echoes across the entire Commonwealth. 

Northern Virginia Music Festivals

The eclectic arts scene of Northern Virginia is teeming with diverse musical events, such as the Crossroads Music Festival in Leesburg, which brings together a fusion of genres ranging from bluegrass to R&B. Also in Loudoun County, the Purcellville Music and Arts Festival, a free event overflowing with local talent, provides electrifying live performances, captivating art exhibitions, and engaging workshops for the whole family.

Rosslyn Jazz Festival
Photo Credit: Josh Brick Graphics

The streets of Arlington come alive during Clarendon Day, a bustling street festival in September. Live music emanates from the festival’s central stage, local vendors sell everything from jewelry to Virginia wine to arts and crafts, and fun children’s activities take place in the Kids Zone. For families looking to groove to jazz beats, the Rosslyn Jazz Festival is the place to be, featuring performances by emerging and acclaimed artists against the stunning backdrop of the nation's capital.

The Tinner Hill Music Festival in Falls Church has history woven into its inception. It brings together musicians and artists to not only entertain but also to honor the civil rights movement, reflecting upon the historic role the Tinner Hill Heritage Foundation has in advancing civil rights.

Family-Friendly Festivals in Central Virginia

Richmond Folk Festival
Photo Credit: Dave Parrish, @rvaphotog

Richmond is the epicenter of Virginia’s diverse music offerings, from the soulful tunes of the Richmond Jazz Festival to the lively strums of the RVA Music Fest and the classic melodies of the Richmond Folk Festival. Just a short journey away in Augusta County, the Staunton Music Festival is a classical music festival welcoming 90 world-class artists from around the world for ten days of chamber, vocal, and symphonic music.

The Wintergreen Music Festival not only showcases a variety of musical performances, from classical to jazz and bluegrass, but it also emphasizes music education. Surrounded by the incredible beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this family-friendly festival includes interactive events designed for children, such as an instrument petting zoo and music workshops, where young attendees are encouraged to engage with music in a hands-on manner.

Music Festivals in the Virginia Mountains

Red Wing Roots Music Festival
Photo Credit: Jay Sansone

In the Virginia Mountains, festivals like the Red Wing Roots Music Festival feature folk and Americana performances in an immersive setting of the great outdoors. Families can camp on-site at several traditional campgrounds, RV sites, or glamping tents.

The Shenandoah Valley Music Festival is a longstanding annual event that generally takes place on select weekends throughout the summer. This festival offers a laid-back atmosphere where families can enjoy classical, jazz, bluegrass, country, and other musical genres.

Hosted by The Humble Hustle Company, the Not Your Average Roots and Reggae Festival in Roanoke features a diverse lineup of artists playing the heart-thumping rhythms of a variety of reggae sub-genres. In addition to the music, the festival includes craft stalls, cultural workshops, and food vendors selling Caribbean cuisine.

Appaloosa Music Festival
Photo Credit: Heidi Holloway, @heidihphoto

Families can enjoy a weekend filled with folk tunes and fun for all ages at the Appaloosa Music Festival in Front Royal. The festival has a Kid’s Zone, complete with a petting zoo, face painting, and hands-on activities like arts and crafts. Kids can also participate in fiddle and banjo lessons, interactive performances, and communal dances. With exclusive family packages that include stays at either Skyline Ranch Resort or a cozy campsite, this festival is the perfect occasion for family bonding.

Coastal Virginia Music Festivals

Virginia Beach Boardwalk Neptune Statue

The Something in the Water Festival is a star-studded, three-day music festival in Virginia Beach. It reflects Pharrell Williams' vision of uniting the community through music, art, and public events. The city also hosts the annual Virginia Beach Neptune Festival every September. This beloved tradition of 40 years features a mix of live performances, a grand parade, and sandcastle competitions along the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

Other festivals in the region include the Beach It! Country Music Festival in Virginia Beach, which began in 2023 and has become one of the largest country musical festivals in the country.

The Patriotic Festival in Norfolk honors the armed forces with country music icons and air shows, while the Norfolk Latino Music Festival bursts with Latin flavors and features salsa, merengue, and other genres.

Festivals in Southwest Virginia

Southwest Virginia has several festivals that combine music with the region’s cultural heritage. Those include the Virginia Highlands Festival, an annual celebration of arts, culture, and history that has been a fixture in the area since 1948, and the Blue Ridge Rock Festival, which caters to rock and metal enthusiasts.

Photo Credit: Matt Smink

Floydfest combines a diverse lineup of musical acts, from bluegrass and folk to reggae and rock. The festival also features numerous workshops, art installations, and a Children's Universe, which includes a rock-climbing wall, a toddler playground, a sensory sandbox, and a tent where kids can do arts and crafts projects.

The Graves Mountain Music Festival promotes bluegrass music and Southern cooking. The tranquil setting of Graves Mountain Lodge provides a welcome retreat for families, with recreational activities such as fishing, hiking, and horseback riding.

Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion
Photo Credit: Cora Wagoner

The Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion celebrates the city’s role as the “Birthplace of Country Music”, with stages that traverse the Tennessee and Virginia state lines. The festival provides an impressive roster of roots music, from country to Americana, with children's stages, street performances, and a dedicated youth area.

Since 1935, the Galax Old Fiddlers’ Convention has been held annually in the charming town of Galax, a must-see destination on Virginia's musical heritage trail, The Crooked Road. Here, the sounds of bluegrass and old-time music fill the air as musicians from all over the world come to compete and showcase their talents.

Grab your tickets to these Virginia festivals for live music experiences that the whole family will love!