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Asheville Music Festivals

Dancing at the Drum Circle in Asheville, NC

From the local and national acts that perform at Moogfest, to the global performers at July's Folkmoot festival in nearby Waynesville, the Asheville area's summer music festivals are as eclectic as the city itself.

Enjoy the unique traditions of the Festival of Native Peoples in Cherokee or listen to the indie bands at the Lexington Avenue Arts & Fun Festival. Whatever your musical tastes, Asheville's music festivals provide another compelling mix of musical sounds.

Hear local and world musicians perform in Asheville.

People have been traveling to Asheville to hear music for generations. In 1928, the Asheville Chamber of Commerce asked local folklorist Bascom Lamar Lunsford to invite local musicians and dancers for an event to encourage tourism.

His creation was the Mountain Folk and Dance Festival, which was so successful that it became a permanent event. Today, the combination of traditional music and mountain beauty remain a major draw for the city's multitude of visitors. And just as the Asheville area has grown, so has its range of musical offerings.

Plan Your Music Journey to Asheville

To get your planning started, here's a brief overview of a few annual festivals in the Asheville area:

  • Biltmore’s Summer Evening Concerts

    Experience the exhilaration of a live concert at Biltmore. Enjoy star performances on the South Terrace, while savoring breathtaking sunset views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

  • Moogfest

    Five extraordinary days of music, featuring amazing music and bands, exhibitions, installations, films, workshops, and discussions celebrating the spirit and expansive vision of Bob Moog.

  • Brevard Music Festival

    If it’s classical music you’re after, check out the performance calendar of the acclaimed Brevard Music Center’s Summer Institute & Festival.

  • Downtown After Five

    Locals celebrate the vibrancy of downtown Asheville at these music-filled Friday evening gatherings. Join the fun every third Friday, May through September. The music menu includes jazz, blues, rock and more.

  • Festival of Native Peoples

    Experience song performances and dance exhibitions from a host of tribes. This annual showcase of Native American culture is held every summer at the Cherokee Indian Fairgrounds in July.

  • Folkmoot USA

    Global sights and sounds take center stage in Western North Carolina during the Folkmoot festival in July, which spotlights folk music and dance by more than 350 performers from about a dozen countries.

  • Mountain Dance and Folk Festival

    Generations of fans have celebrated the sounds of the banjo, fiddle and dulcimer along with traditional dance at the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival at in July.

  • Shindig on the Green

    "Along about sundown" is the calling card for these free bluegrass song and dance gatherings, which have been taking place in Asheville for more than four decades in the summer.

  • Singing on the Mountain

    The oldest ongoing old-time gospel convention of its kind in the Southern Appalachians, this free day-long event is held at the foot of Grandfather Mountain in June. The day includes top Southern Gospel groups and Grand Ole Opry performers, plus a midday sermon.

All Upcoming Music Festivals


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Art In Autumn

  • September 20, 2014
  • Location: Downtown Weaverville
  • Address: 20 N. Main Street, Weaverville, NC 28787

The Weaverville Business Association proudly presents Weaverville's annual Art in Autumn Festival on Sept. 20, 2014. This year's festival features nearly 140 artists! Join us on Main Street in downtown Weaverville, North Carolina from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Art, food, and fun all on one street!

Asheville Greek Festival

  • September 26, 2014 - September 28, 2014
  • Location: Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Historic Montford
  • Address: 227 Cumberland Ave., Asheville, NC 28801
  • Recurrence: Recurring daily

Three days of fun at the Asheville Greek Festival. Wonderful homemade Greek food and pastries, Greek dancing, Greek beer and wine, cultural demonstrations, church tours, kids' rides..come and get a taste of Greece right in Asheville.

Biannual Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands - Fall

  • October 16, 2014 - October 19, 2014
  • Location: US Cellular Center
  • Address: 87 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC 28801
  • Venue:  US Cellular Center
  • Recurrence: Recurring daily

Over 200 exhibitors, craft demonstrations and live regional music and entertainment! For four days each July and October, the US Cellular Center in Asheville, N.C., comes alive with fine traditional and contemporary crafts. Over 200 craftspeople fill the two levels of the center, selling their works of clay, fiber, glass, leather, metal, mixed media, natural materials, paper, wood and jewelry.  The Fairs, a local tradition since 1948, showcase the work of members of the Southern Hig...

Blue Ridge Pride Festival

  • October 4, 2014
  • Location: Pack Square Park
  • Address: Pack Square Park, Asheville, NC 28801
  • Venue:  Pack Square Park

Annual LGBT grassroots festival featuring education, celebration and entertainment.

Shining Rock Riverfest

  • September 13, 2014
  • Location: Camp Hope
  • Address: 312 Camp Hope Road, Canton, NC 28716

Mountain Music Fans mark your calendars. The 2nd-Annual Shining Rock Riverfest 2014 is fast approaching. Taking place at Camp Hope, Canton NC, established in 1925. Featuring nine of NC, TN, & Atlanta's rising bands with their roots firmly planted in Appalachian Mountain Music. Admission is $10 @ the gate, kids under 12 Free. Great BBQ by Blue Ridge BBQ Company and 12 arts & crafts vendors in the lodge. Parking is limited, so please carpool when possible. No dogs or glass bottles allowed....

Three Days of Light Gathering 2014

  • October 3, 2014 - October 5, 2014
  • Location: Camp Grier
  • Recurrence: Recurring daily

3DL is all about connection. To the Earth, to spirit, to each other. It is about taking the time to FEEL how deep these connections can be. 3DL is an event that was designed and created for all ages in mind. Three Days of Light = Three Days of Relaxation, Yoga, Mediation, Educational Workshops, Ceremonies, Music, Art, Activites, and Performances... and LOTS OF CELEBRATION! Want to get a feel for 3DL? Check out our documentary (!

Asheville Oktoberfest

  • October 11, 2014
  • Location: Coxe Avenue, Downtown Asheville
  • Address: Coxe Avenue, Asheville, NC 28801

The Asheville Downtown Association’s Oktoberfest eturns on Saturday, October 11 from 1pm to 6pm on Coxe Avenue on downtown Asheville’s south slope. Tickets will go on sale Monday, August 1 at noon for $30. Ticket prices will increase to $35 on Sept. 1 and to $40 on Oct. 1. Oktoberfest is a 21 and over festival, we encourage you to leave the kids at home. If you must bring children, those 8 and up must have a designated driver ticket. Children under 7 will be admitted free. Designated...

Downtown After 5 Presented by Harmony Motors: Asheville All-Stars

  • September 19, 2014
  • Location: North Lexington Avenue at I-240 Bridge
  • Address: Downtown Asheville, Asheville, NC 28801

Downtown After 5 takes place the 3rd Friday of the month from May through September, Downtown After 5 is located at N. Lexington Avenue and I-240 and is always free. Asheville All-Stars The All-Stars will include members from Yo Mama's Big Fat Booty Band, The Asheville Horns, Molli Party, The Hermit Kings, Bayou Diesel, Mary Francis and The Dirty Classics, The Tuesday Night Funk Jam House Band, and many more. As a testament to the abundance of musical talent in Asheville, this year's Asheville A...

Feasting for FEAST 2014

  • September 4, 2014
  • Location: The Pillar
  • Address: 46 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC 28801

Join chef John Fleer from Rhubarb as he showcases samples from his award-winning menu at the 4th annual Feasting for FEAST event. This year’s fundraiser will include a selection of Biltmore wine, a collaborative beer from Oyster House Brewing Company and Riverbend Malt House and will be hosted by Asheville’s local celebrities Augusta Wind and Earlene Hooch.

LEAF - Lake Eden Arts Festival

  • October 16, 2014 - October 19, 2014
  • Location: Camp Rockmont
  • Venue:  Black Mountain

LEAF is one of the treasured traditions for families and friends across the Southeast and beyond. A weekend at LEAF is the equivalent of going on a year-long, multi-cultural music, arts, dance and outdoor-adventures journey, which "recharges our batteries." A few aspects that make LEAF "one of the best fests in the country" [re: Johnny Irion] is the FAMILY-friendly atmosphere, the diverse sampling of arts and music, the setting and the intimate size.

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