Atlanta Summer Festivals to Visit in 2022

In addition to peaches, red clay, and wings, Atlanta is known for its festivals throughout the year, and in the weeks to come, many of your favorite events return. It doesn’t matter if you are a fan of food, cinema, entertainment or fine arts, the Georgian capital will meet all your needs. Whether it’s the Jazz Festival in Piedmont Park, the immersive arts festival located on the streets of Alpharetta, or the hugely popular Atlanta Ice Cream Festival in June, each has its own vibe and can offer a special experience to all participants.

Take a look at upcoming festivals during the hottest and funniest months in Atlanta. Be safe and stay cool, friends.

Alpharetta Arts Streetfest
Alpharetta Arts Streetfest

Or: The Willis Park Grove
When: Saturday May 28 – Sunday May 29
What: This event will feature over 100 artists from across the country against the backdrop of the beautiful city of Alpharetta. As you stroll through the huge outdoor festival gallery behind the community center, you can see new art, meet new people, and immerse yourself in an atmosphere filled with creativity. Food and drink will be available for purchase from the many vendors on site. There will also be a Kidz Zone to entertain the little ones, so don’t hesitate and bring the whole family.
Cost: Free

Atlanta Jazz Festival
Atlanta Jazz Festival | Christophe Octa/Flickr

Or: Piedmont Park
When: Saturday May 28 – Monday May 30
What: Spend Memorial Day weekend listening to amazing music at Piedmont Park. No purchase necessary as this event is free. Known as one of the largest free jazz festivals in the United States, the ATL Jazz Fest is an annual celebration of culture and art to expose a wider audience to the history, heritage and to the variety of the only true American art form. This event will feature artists from all over, so you’ll get a taste of the eclecticism of this genre of music.
Who: Performers include Herbie Hancock, TC Carson, Kebbi Williams and the Wolfpack, Tia Fuller’s Intersections, Masego, Joe Alterman, The Baylor Project, Rhonda Thomas, Eddie Palmieri Afro Caribbean Jazz Septet, Julie Dexter, Naia Izumi, Makaya McCraven, Kathleen Bertrand, Kenny Barron Quartet and Warren Wolf & The Pack.
Cost: Free

Candler Park Music Festival
Candler Park Music Festival

Or: Candler Park
When: Friday June 3 – Saturday June 4
What: Less than 9 months from last year’s celebration (festivities have been pushed back due to COVID-19 precautions), the Candler Park Music Festival is sure to leave a big impact on 2022. For its 14th year, the festival will include exceptional live performances, an artist and enthusiast market, full beer, wine & spirits bars, as well as a few food trucks when hunger strikes.
Who: Performers include Grace Potter, Yonder Mountain String Band, Andy Frasco & The UN, The Orange Constant, The Disco Biscuits, Trouble No More, Twiddle, Cha Wa, CBDB and Webster.
Cost: $35 for a day entry, $50 for a weekend pass. To buy tickets here.

Or: Chattahoochee Nature Center
When: Saturday June 4 – Sunday June 5
What: Take a trip to Roswell to see a beautiful butterfly exhibit for a day of fun with the whole family. During the festival, meet butterfly experts, learn about migration, and sample tasty food and drink with live entertainment. There will also be plants for sale, including nectariferous plants and other pollinators. Vendors featured are the GA Department of Agriculture, Roswell Fine Arts, Georgia Audubon, Bee Wild, It Element Handicrafts, Metro Atlanta Bee Keepers Association, and more.
Cost: $15 General public and $12 CNC members. Free for children 2 and under.

Virginia-Highland Summerfest
Virginia-Highland Summerfest

Or: Virginia Ave. between Barnett St. and Arcadia St. at John Howell Park
When: Saturday June 11
What: After being canceled last year due to the pandemic, Virginia-Highland Summerfest is back in full force. The launch party ($25 fee) begins Friday, June 10 at 6 p.m. at John Howell Park and will include food trucks, drink options, raffles, and performances by The Unmentionables and The Backyard Birds. But don’t have too much fun – the 5k run ($35 entry fee) starts at 8am sharp on Saturday morning just before the festival. On the 11th, you can experience live bands, buy art, and face plenty of food choices.
Who: Friday and Saturday performances include The Unmentionables, The Backyard Birds, and more.
Cost: $25 – $35

Or: Historical park of the 4th arrondissement
When: Saturday June 11
What: With over 150 beers from local ATL breweries as well as companies across the country, the Atlanta Summer Beerfest has become one of the most anticipated events of the summer. In addition to the extensive beer list, there will also be wine, ciders, hard seltzers, and more. There will also be food from places like Calaveritas, Roti Rolls, Soul Pit, Azucar and several others. After sipping the day, be sure to listen to live music from DJ Qtip with Davis and the Love.
Cost: $45 in advance, $50 after June 2, $60 at the door. To buy here.

Or: Georgia Freight Depot
When: Sunday June 19
What: To celebrate Father’s Day and Juneteenth, stop by the GA Freight Depot for the eighth annual Family Food Fest. You’ll see chefs, cooks, caterers, restaurateurs, fathers and men showcasing their culinary skills. All attendees will be able to sample different types of food (including vegan/vegetarian options) and also enjoy live entertainment, a silent auction, health screenings, and more. Produced by the non-profit Atlanta Culinary Charities, this event will run from 3-6 p.m.
Cost: $25 (Adults) – $15 (Children 12 and under). To buy tickets here.

Atlanta Ice Cream Festival
Atlanta Ice Cream Festival

Or: Piedmont Park
When: Saturday June 23
What: Who doesn’t love ice cream? In fact, some people love ice cream so much that they’ve decided to dedicate an entire festival to it. The Piedmont Park Ice Cream Festival will have plenty of ice cream to try, which will be the perfect balance in the July heat of Atlanta. A health and wellness program is also in the works, so stay tuned. Entrance to the festival is free to the public, so bring your appetite, support amazing ice cream vendors, and be prepared for a memorable experience.
Cost: Free

Or: RoleCall theater and various venues.
When: Friday August 19 – Sunday August 21
What: Filmmaking is a beautiful process, and AUFF showcases artists who create underground projects that break the mold of conventional cinema. For three days, attendees can see some of the best feature and short films from around the world. Some of the most talented filmmakers and actors will be in the building, so it’s also a great place to network with the crème de la crème of the industry.
Cost: To be determined

summer shadow festival
summer shadow festival

Or: Grant Park
When: Saturday August 27 – Sunday August 28
What: The annual event at Atlanta’s oldest park celebrates its 20th anniversary in August. The Summer Shade Festival 2022 is one you surely don’t want to miss. For all the fitness enthusiasts out there, you can sign up for the Adams Realty 5k run, which starts the morning of the 27th. After running or walking, enjoy the music, artist market, and live entertainment throughout the weekend.
Cost: Free

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okla jones is an Atlanta-based journalist who writes about food, fine art, and entertainment. His work also appears in ESSENCE, Creative Loafing Atlanta and Consequence of Sound. Follow him on Instagram at @coolhandoak.

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