I know most people are not likely to choose little ole Roanoke, Virginia as their summer vacationing spot, but for those of you who may visit for fun, to see family, or just to drive through, this article highlights some of the popular summer activities in Roanoke, Virginia. Maybe I’m a little biased, but I think some of these events are even worth a little drive to Roanoke. Note: This is only a short list of 3 summer events in Roanoke, but to find a more summer activities, go to http://visitroanokeva.com/ or http://www.downtownroanoke.org/.
Appease your creative side at a festival…
If you like festivals and are in the area, you should make it a point to stop by one of Roanoke’s top annual events, the 38th Annual Festival in the Park! As advertised on their website, the Festival in the Park’s mission is “To enhance and promote the visual and performing arts and sports activities in the Roanoke Valley and surrounding areas, to generate a positive economic impact on the Valley, and to fund an Arts Scholarship Program.” Located in Elmwood Park in Downtown Roanoke, the Festival in the Park will take place from May 24, 2007 thru May 28, 2007…a four-day long event of fun, good food, sports, kid’s games, live entertainment, and arts and crafts shopping!
Evening concerts will be last from 5 p.m. thru 10 p.m. each night. Daytime activities will commence on Saturday, May 26 and will run from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. on Sunday May 27, and 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Monday May 28. Daytime activities are free; evening concerts require admission ($8 at the gate or $24 for a Festival 4-Pass). One of my favorite traditions at the Festival in the Park is the finale evening performance by 1964 The Tribute on Memorial Day! If you’re a Beatles fan, you’ve got to come out and see this group – they bring a “full house” to the outdoor amphitheatre in Elmwood Park every year! For more information, visit www.roanokefestival.org.
Wine is not just a drink for the elite
On Sunday, June 24, from 1 p.m. – 6 p.m., Roanoke will drink to its 15th Annual Roanoke Valley Wine Festival. The festival will be held in Elmwood Park in Downtown Roanoke, rain or shine. Enjoy live music, chatting with local merchants, sipping on wines from 15 different Virginia wineries, listening to wine seminars, and shopping from local artisans. Don’t be surprised if you go home with a few bottles from one or more of the Virginia wineries! Some of the wineries that will be selling and offering wines for tasting include AmRhein Wine Cellars, Peaks of Otter Winery, Rockbridge Vineyard, Blue Ridge Vineyards, Chateau Morrisette, and Virginia Mountain Vineyards. You must be 21 or older (ID required) to attend. Tickets purchased at the gate cost $25, but tickets bought in advance cost only $18. To buy tickets in advance or for more information, contact either Mill Mountain Theatre (540-342-5740, www.millmountain.org) or Fiddlefest (540-777-1418 / 866-883-9466). You can also find more information at www.centerinthesquare.org.
Start up your engines!
Star City Motor Madness is a free, two-day event for automobile lovers! It celebrates the American passion for automobiles and cruising, bringing participants from throughout the Mid-Atlantic and beyond. The event will be held on Friday, June 29 and Saturday, June 30. Car lovers from all over the Roanoke Valley and surrounding areas come to participate in or sit back and watch automobiles, “old-timey” and modern, show off on Friday night’s cruise night and Saturday’s Car Show.
From 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. on Friday, June 29, 2007, Roanoke will host its annual Williamson Road Cruise Night, sponsored by Berglund Auto World and Coca-Cola. Serving as Roanoke’s “main cruising drag” since the 1950s, Williamson Road has its busiest night on Cruise Night, when any car, truck, motorcycle, or other vehicle is legally permitted to show off its pride “to invoke feelings of excitement or nostalgia.” This night is one where all the clubs and automobile enthusiasts come together on one main drag; on one night, you’ll see the hot Star City Corvettes, various motorcycle clubs, golf carts, mustangs, Back to the Future DeLoreans, Studebakers, Plymouth Prowlers, and other vehicles representing various decades. If you find the right spots on the cruising strip, you can also watch some of the vehicles “compete” to smoke their wheels!
From 2 p.m. – 9 p.m. on Saturday, June 30, 2007, Star City Motor Madness will host its annual Car Show in Downtown Roanoke on Jefferson Street, Franklin Avenue, and at Elmwood Park. The show includes activities for kids, live music, live Radio Remote with Q-99, and a Car Corral where there will be collector cars for sale!
Visit http://www.starcitymotormadness.com/faq.html for more information.