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If you haven’t experienced a summer in Manchester, VT, start making your plans today because it’s lining up to be a memorable one. Festivals, fairs, exhibitions, workshops, classes are all happening this season in picturesque Manchester!

With so many culturally enriching experiences at your fingertips, there is no better place to spend your summer than in our quaint quintessential New England town. Whether your musical vibe leans towards the classics or more folk, bluegrass, or rock n roll, the music festivals coming to town this summer are second to none.  And if you’re into the performing arts, don’t miss the incredible theatrical productions taking place from mid-June through October at two award-winning playhouses.

Beyond music festivals and shows, visitors can explore Manchester’s scenic hiking trails, indulge in farm-to-table dining experiences, and browse unique shops and boutiques in the charming downtown area. The warm, welcoming atmosphere and rich cultural offerings make Manchester your ideal summer getaway.

Taconic Music Festival

Kicking of this year’s festival season is the 8th Annual Taconic Music Festival. This year’s festival brings together internationally acclaimed musicians and chamber music intensive students from across the country, along with the Taconic’s resident ensemble, Taconic Chamber Players.  They will be offering a broad repertoire of Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and contemporary works, including pop, rock, and jazz arrangements. This summer will be full of wonderful chamber music, plus a full-orchestra Pops concert!

Tickets are on sale NOW. You can learn more and purchase tickets on the Festival Overview page. Shows begin June 22 and run through July 15.

Taconic Music provides Southern Vermont communities with year-round concerts, lessons, and educational programs built upon the rich traditions of classical music. At the same time, they offer inclusive points of entry through a variety of genres for people of all ages and walks of life who value music as part of their daily lives. Click here to learn more!

Dorset Theatre Festival

In its 46th year, the Dorset Theatre Festival presents its professional Main Stage season at the historic Dorset Playhouse, highlighting both new plays and classic works. Enlightening, entertaining, and inspiring audiences since 1977, the festivals’ annual celebration of great plays runs from mid-June through early September and features top theatre-makers from around the country.

This year’s Main Stage line-up includes:

The Beauty Queen of Leenane: from June 21 – July 6, Native Gardens from July 12 – 21, Sidekicked from Aug 2 –17, and True Art from Aug 23 – Sept 7.

Tickets on sale NOW – Click here to purchase and learn more!

In addition to Main Stage productions of new plays, the festival’s new play development programs showcase works-in-progress and provide the Southern Vermont region an opportunity to play a key role in the evolution of new plays in consideration for future productions at the festival and beyond.

Recent new play development programs have featured plays written by Kate Cortesi, Melissa Ross, Frank Harts, Sofia Alvarez, Matthew Paul Olmos, and Sarah T. Schwab, as well as actors including Alfre Woodard, Treat Williams, Estelle Parsons, Karen Allen, Ray Anthony Thomas, and Danny DeVito. The PIPELINE SERIES features new works and projects in process through three one-night-only presentations each year.

Manchester Music Festival

The Manchester Musci Festival (MMF) is celebrating its Golden Anniversary with a curated season of more than 30 events, including performances, masterclasses, open rehearsals, talks, and outreach programs. Under the leadership of their Artistic Director, Philip Setzer, founder and violinist of the Emerson String Quartet, Season 50 celebrates “The Romantic Journey,” a theme that cuts to the heart of how art reflects our humanity.

Beginning July 11 through August 8, you won’t want to miss any one of their Main Stage Concerts held in Southern Vermont Arts Center’s Arkell Pavilion or one of the Young Artists Concerts featuring the next generation of great chamber musicians.  Join them for MMF Thursday Nights, MMF Young Artists Program, MMF Special Events, MMF Discovery Programs, and the MMF Family Programs.

Tickets on Sale NOW – Click here purchase and learn more.

Established in 1974, Manchester Music Festival has been, and continues to be a beacon for classical music enthusiasts for half a century, showcasing both established artists and young talents.

Weston Theater Company

The Weston Playhouse, renowned for its commitment to producing high-quality theatrical performances, is set to offer an exciting and diverse lineup for its 2024 season. Nestled in the charming village of Weston, VT, the playhouse has long been a cultural hub, attracting theater enthusiasts from near and far. The 2024 season promises a blend of classic plays, contemporary works, and captivating musicals, showcasing both emerging talents and seasoned performers. Highlights include a reimagined production of a beloved Broadway classic, a thought-provoking modern drama, and a new musical making its regional debut, each carefully selected to engage and inspire audiences.

This year’s shows promise laughter and inspiration, with stories centered around family, friendship, love, and hope.  From JERSEY BOYS and its story of the sensational Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons to THE PORCH ON WINDY HILL’s heartwarming tale about the unifying power of music; from PIPPIN‘s magical journey to the spine-tingling secrets of THE WOMAN IN BLACK, Season 88 promises to thrill you with the joy of live performance. We can’t wait to sing, dance, and celebrate Weston’s indomitable spirit with you this year.

This year’s line-up includes; Jersey Boys from June 12 – July 7, Junie B. Jones from June 20 – July 7, Pippin from July 24 – Aug 17, The Porch on Windy Hill from Aug 22 – Sept 1, and The Woman in Black from Oct 2 – Oct 20.

Tickets on sale NOW – Click here to purchase and learn more!

Dead of Summer Music Festival

Join us for the 5th Dead of Summer Music Festival (DOSM) presented by Whirlygig Music. Happening July 12-14, 2024, the event will return to Hunter Park. Nestled on 25 acres in the Green Mountains in Manchester, VT, festival goers will experience 3 days of Live Music on 2 stages, over 25 vendors, including food trucks, clothing, art, jewelry, and crafts. Also offering 2 days of yoga, a kids’ set, tie dying, and an 18-hole disc golf course on-site, makes this a family/kid-friendly festival.

The DOSM and Pink Talking Fish announce special guests, THE WOLFPACK string & brass quintet along with members of Twiddle, Remain in Light, Cool Cool Cool, and Dead Set, for their performance of the Grateful Dead’s album Terrapin Station along with a fusion of Pink Floyd, Talking Heads, and Phish.

This year’s lineup also includes 20 + artists and bands from throughout the region and country. Tickets on sale NOW – Click here to purchase and learn more.

Vermont Summer Festival

This six-week USEF National/4*-Rated offers an all-inclusive horse show just a 10-minute drive from Manchester Town Center. Beginning July 3 through August 11, events at the festival include a variety of show jumping classes, from beginner levels to $30,000 Grand Prix competitions. The Grand Prix events, held on weekends, are particularly popular, featuring challenging courses designed to test the skill and agility of both horse and rider. These events are not only competitive but also family-friendly, offering a thrilling experience for spectators of all ages.

Founded in 1994, the Vermont Summer Festival has grown into one of the most prestigious equestrian events in the Northeast United States. It takes place at Harold Beebe Farm, a picturesque venue offering top-notch facilities and a scenic backdrop of the Green Mountains. The festival is renowned for its high-level competition, drawing top riders, including Olympians and international champions.  Click here to learn more!

Green Mountain Bluegrass and Roots Festival

In mid-August (Aug 15 -18) the Green Mountain Bluegrass and Roots Festival (GMBRF) returns for its 5th year offering another family-friendly festival with live music and more. The festival features a diverse lineup of nationally renowned and local musicians who bring the rich sounds of bluegrass, Americana, and folk music to life. The event, held at the historic Hunter Park, provides a spacious and scenic venue for festival-goers to enjoy both the performances and the natural beauty of the area.

This year’s line-up features over 25 bands and artists for this four-day music festival.  Featuring main stage performances, acoustic stages, late-night acoustic stages, dance tent, camping, kids’ activities, local food trucks, and Vermont craft beer plus with the festival being located right in town, lodging options are both unique and plentiful with a variety of hotels, bed and breakfast inns, motels or camp in the fields. The goal of the festival is to bring together all generations, in one field, with beautiful musicianship, activities, and a world-class experience that everyone can enjoy. Tickets on sale NOW – Click here to purchase and learn more!

Southern Vermont Arts & Crafts Festival

As the summer winds down, don’t miss the annual Southern Vermont Arts & Crafts Festival from Sept 6 – Sept 8.  This weekend-long event features many local and artisans throughout New England showcasing their crafts while offering a unique hands-on experience. Explore a wide variety of handmade goods, including intricate jewelry, fine art, pottery, textiles, and more. The festival not only offers a marketplace for unique, high-quality crafts, but also fosters a sense of community and appreciation for the arts, featuring live music, delicious local food, VT craft beer, wines and distilled spirits, and interactive demonstrations.

The festival provides a platform for artists to connect with art and craft enthusiasts and collectors, enhancing the cultural fabric of the region, set against the backdrop of Vermont’s scenic landscapes, adding to the charm and appeal of the show for families, visitors, and locals alike.

 Click here to learn more!

MORE THAN JUST A DAY TRIP!

With so many unique festivals to partake in, you might wish to make this more than a day trip.  Combine your festival visit with an amazing outdoor experience, a trip to a local art center or gallery, a historical tour, or a shopping trip at any of the town’s premier boutique stores, mom-and-pop shops, art/artisan galleries, and designer outlets.  To see everything Manchester, VT has to offer in a single day would never be enough time.

Relax and Stay awhile at any one of our resorts, boutique hotels, charming Inns + B&Bs, modern motels, or vacation rentals. The lodging options are almost endless and are made to fit your personal style, needs, and budget. All this to make your next getaway unforgettable!

Equinox

The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa

One such place to treat yourself, is a stay in the heart of Manchester Village.  The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa embodies all that is quintessential New England, combining a rich sense of history and tradition with superb service and contemporary amenities to make for an easeful, elegant stay. Rooms and suites feature gorgeous views of the mountains, gardens, and the historic village center. World-class recreational activities take you from the gently rolling hills of the par 71 Walter Travis golf course to the 914 acres of mountain trails right in their backyard, along with fly fishing access and hiking opportunities at Equinox Pond.

The resort is also poised to pamper with saunas, steam baths, a fitness center, and a yoga studio, plus ten treatment rooms with an extensive menu of massages, facials, and body treatments. Click here to learn more!

EAT, DRINK, AND ENJOY MANCHESTER!

Summer days in Manchester provide plenty of sunshine and warmth. Gardens are flourishing and the greens are lush and vibrant. This is the time that many locals, and visitors alike, take advantage of the gorgeous weather and enjoy dining al fresco at one of the local favorite haunts. Many of our restaurants and cafés offer patio and outdoor seating options throughout the season, with some providing incredible views of Southern Vermont vistas.

Now is the time to take advantage of Vermont’s natural beauty and breathe in the fresh air, all while tasting some of the best food available in Southern Vermont. Dinner reservations are always recommended at most area eateries. For a complete list of the many restaurants and cafes offering outdoor seating Click Here.

Whatever you’re planning for your next Manchester adventure, let us help you make the most of your trip! Learn more at ManchesterVermont.com!

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