Summer in the City: Cincinnati Edition

Washington Park Summer Cinema. Picture from Instagram

Washington Park Summer Cinema. Picture from Instagram

Do you find yourself at the start of every summer with high hopes of 'doing it all'- camping, hiking, biking, canoeing, swimming, concerts, picnics, movies, baseball games, races and road trips- only to find that it is suddenly September and you've accomplished only a few of your must-do's? We certainly know the feeling! This summer however we're hoping to plan ahead and get as many fun summer activities on our calendars. To start off we searched through all of Cincinnati's city event calendars and drew on past summer experiences to pull together a list of some of the best festivals, concerts, flea markets, and free events that the city has to offer!

Get ready for the best summer ever!

Reoccurring Summer Events:

Washington Park plays host daily to a slew of fun activities throughout the summer, most of which are free! Check out Washington Park Summer Cinema, Wednesday nights through August 26th and Bandstand Bluegrass, Thursday nights through September 3rd. The City Flea, Cincinnati’s largest curated urban flea market also takes place monthly at Washington Park from May through December. Check online for all scheduled dates.

Fountain Square also has a robust line-up of daily, free summer activities, including Salsa on the Square every Thursday through September 17th and the Midpoint Indie Summer concert series that runs every Friday through September 4th and features local and national bands. Did I mention these are all free events?!

Looking for even more free live music outdoors this summer? Head over to Yeatman's Cove every Wednesday through August 12th for Party in the Park. From 5-6:30 drinks are discounted!

We’ve sung it’s praises already here on the blog, so make sure to check out the Burlington Antique Show sometime this summer! It takes place on the third Sunday of every month from April- October. Get there early and often!!

Head to the ballpark this summer to see the Cincinnati Reds play! Every Friday home game has post-game fireworks! Even better, the city is also playing host this year to the Major League Baseball All-Star game. All-Star Week runs July 10-14 and will feature many events at the ballpark, Duke Energy Convention Center and other locations throughout the city with the All-Star Game taking place on Tuesday July 14th . Worth noting is the Bacon, Bourbon and Brew Festival taking place during All Star week at Festival Park in Newport. Features bacon and other pork products, Kentucky bourbon and beers from local breweries. So many delicious things all in one place!! Free admission includes live music, games and activities!

Area Choreographers Festival at the Aronoff Center. Check it out this weekend!

Area Choreographers Festival at the Aronoff Center. Check it out this weekend!

Notable Events:

This week and weekend:

  • June 11-12: Area Choreographers Festival, 8:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday at the Aronoff Center. Presented by the Contemporary Dance Theater, this festival will feature the region's best and brightest dancers. 
  • June 11-12: Banshee Brew Fest, 4-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday at Kings Island. Sample more than 100 craft beers from over 20 breweries. There will also be food offerings and live music.    
  • June 13: Shandon Strawberry Festival, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Historic Shandon Business District, Ohio 126 between Ross and Brookville. Come for a picnic supper with fresh strawberries, homemade shortcake and ice cream. Check out local historic houses for antiques, country crafts, original art, pottery and furniture. An antique tractor show and antique car parts swap meet are also a part of the festival!
  • June 13: Tap 'N' Run 4K, 2-4 p.m., The Banks, 150 E. Freedom Way. Run a fun 4K (2.4 miles) with costumes, friends, and beer along course. At the finish line, participants receive a full beer and chance to win one of many awards. Ages 21 and up (obviously.)
  • June 13: Urban Wine Fest, 2-10 p.m., 1215 Wine Bar and Coffee Lab, Parking lot next door. Enjoy 24 wine tastings, live music, and food with a wine seminar at noon. The fest benefits the Over the Rhine Community Housing and the Recovery Hotel. Reservations are required so check it out now!
Have a blast at the Color Run this Summer! We did a few years ago!

Have a blast at the Color Run this Summer! We did a few years ago!

This summer:

  • July 4: Red, White and Boom, 8 p.m., at the Riverbend Music Center. Enjoy an all-American celebration with the Cincinnati Pops and versatile string trio Time for Three, plus Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks.
  • July 11: The Color Run, 9 a.m. at Sawyer Point. Run or walk the "Happiest 5k on the Planet" this summer! We both can attest that this is one fun run you won't want to miss!
  • August 5-9: Lumenocity at Washington Park. Performances begin at 8:30 p.m. Lumenocity is a concert festival experience brought to life by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in conjunction with the Cincinnati Pops, Cincinnati Ballet, Cincinnati Opera and May Festival. For the second half of the performance the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra performs to live 3-D projection mapping on the facade of Music Hall. Hopefully you got tickets to this one already!
  • August 7 & 8: Cincy Blues Fest at Sawyer Point. Enjoy the best names in blues music with food and fun for the whole family!
  • 2015 Diner en blanc – date and location TBD. Join friends and strangers alike for this unique mass “chic picnic” in a public space. Guests dress in white and bring their own picnic basket, folding table and chairs, and white tablecloth. Check back on the website for ticket information!

Quite the incredible line-up of events! We hope to see you at some of these fun festivals and concerts!

Check back on Friday for our list of favorite summer activities and events for Columbus!!


-a & c.