Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance looks forward to fall events after successful summer

Published: Sep. 1, 2022 at 10:46 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Summer 2022 comes to its unofficial end this weekend and for downtown Harrisonburg, it was a busy season with many events making their first comeback in years.

“It’s felt really good to bring the community back together and to celebrate being in Harrisonburg and to provide something fun for our communities and tourists to do while they’re here,” Andrea Dono, the Executive Director of the Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance, said.

Thousands of people flocked to the Turner Pavilion for the Rocktown Beer and Music Festival in April and the sold-out Downtown Dinner Party brought people together in May. Both events came back from a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Best.Weekend.Ever. featured live music, a sip and stroll, and food trucks in June. Block Party in the ‘Burg welcomed James Madison University students back to the Friendly City at the end of August. Both events were able to happen last summer.

“They come back because they love Harrisonburg and they just need an excuse to come here, so it’s really important for people to maintain their connections with our community,” Dono said. “I think people are just hungry for togetherness and for activities to get back into things.”

Events were reformatted so they are all not at the Turner Pavilion or Court Square, but all around the 40-blocks making up downtown Harrisonburg.

This fall there are still plenty of events and festivals to look forward to:

- Harrisonburg International Festival: Saturday, Sept. 22, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.

- Shenandoah Valley Pride: Saturday, Oct. 8 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

- Skeleton Festival: Saturday, Oct. 15, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

- Harrisonburg Half Marathon: Oct. 15 at 7 a.m.

“It’s just going to be a phenomenal time in downtown Harrisonburg starting this month,” Dono said.

While big events happen several times a season in downtown Harrisonburg, Dono encourages people to check out events that small businesses host frequently and check out First Fridays every month.