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Culture and Entertainment

There’s no limit to cultural and entertainment activities in Front Royal and the surrounding Warren County communities. As the northern gateway to the Shenandoah Valley and Shenandoah National Park, Front Royal is known for outdoor recreation, scenic beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Shenandoah Wine Trail, its historical Civil War roots, and more. The “Canoe Capital of Virginia” is also home to a variety of artisans, crafters, musicians, concerts, wineries, and festivals.

Blue Ridge Arts Council
(540) 635-9909
www.blueridgearts.org

Founded in 1987, the Blue Ridge Arts Council has serves as a cultural oasis in Front Royal and Warren County. Local residents and visitors alike enjoy year-round art exhibits by regional artists in their gallery (305 East Main St.), as well as satellite galleries in the Warren County Courthouse and Government Center facilities.

The council offers a wide range of programming, including workshops in the arts and educational outreach programs for local schools. Each summer, through a partnership with the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the town of Front Royal, and Warren County, the council presents Gazebo Gatherings, a summer-long outdoor concert series on Friday evenings at 7 p.m. in the gazebo at the Town Commons at Main and Chester St.

Special events round out the year, with holiday artistic creations at the annual Deck the Halls event each November.

Festivals & Fairs

Front Royal Civil War Weekend

Relive the Battle of Front Royal as Union and Confederate forces stage living history encampments along Main and Chester streets on the first Saturday in May. The Warren Heritage Society partnered to host the first Front Royal Civil War Weekend in 2016, featuring a reenactment of the Battle of Front Royal. Also known as Guard Hill or Cedarville, this battle was fought May 23, 1862, when Confederate Army Major General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson campaigned through the Shenandoah Valley during the American Civil War.

Virginia Wine and Craft Festival

For over 30 years, the Virginia Wine and Craft Festival has been a must- attend even on the third Saturday in May. This Chamber-organized event boasts wine tastings from more than 20 Virginia wineries and crafters of all kinds from throughout the East Coast, which draw people from far and wide to Front Royal.

Warren County Fair

Celebrate the Warren County Fair during the first full week of August at the 51-year-old Warren County Fairgrounds (26 Fairgrounds Rd.). A special concert is planned annually on the Sunday before the fair. Pageants, nightly entertainment, carnival rides, youth contests, a pet show, garden tractor pull, tractor displays, demolition derby, 4-H livestock show and sale, a home economics division for both youth and adults, agriculture and livestock divisions all are included in the county fair, planned by the Fair Association, a nonprofit organization established in 1987.

Appaloosa Festival – D.C. Roots Music Festival

Scores of bluegrass, country, folk and Americana bands are on tap on five stages for the D.C. Roots Music Festival, Appaloosa, at the Skyline Ranch Resort (751 Mountain Rd.), just a few miles from downtown Front Royal. Hosted annually on Labor Day weekend by D.C. favorite Scythian, the family-friendly festival featuring on-site camping, is nestled in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley with the Blue Ridge Mountains as a backdrop and adjacent to the Shenandoah Valley Wine Trail. Some of the most critically acclaimed up-and-coming artists from across the country fill the performance lineup. Vendors, great food, wine, beer and plenty of nearby opportunities to explore the great outdoors on foot, horseback or by canoe!

Virginia Air Show

The Virginia Air Show provides thrills for the whole family annually on the last Saturday in August at the Front Royal Warren County Airport (229 Stokes Airport Rd.). For nine years, the barnstorming, wing-walking extravaganza has celebrated a variety of aircraft including biplanes, war birds, gliders, exotic aircraft and more. Visit www.virginiaairshow.com for full details.

Brew & Blues Festival

Sample more than 50 beer varieties, many of which are Virginia brews, while enjoying live entertainment, perusing an array of arts and craft offerings, sampling food truck fare, and playing corn hole or other lawn games at the annual Brew & Blues Festival on the fourth Sunday each September.

Autumn Conservation Festival

The Autumn Conservation Festival is an unforgettable day of tours, children’s activities, live music, food and fun at the Smithsonian Biology Institute. Located in Warren County, the annual event takes place on the first weekend of October and is the only time during the year when the facility is open to the public.

Festival of Leaves

Organized by the Warren Heritage Society, the Festival of Leaves is a great place to enjoy the splendor of fall on the second weekend of October in Front Royal’s historical downtown district.

Fun and family activities await visitors to the Hometown Halloween celebration from 6-8 p.m. Oct. 31 in Downtown Front Royal.

Christmas Parade

Bundle up to enjoy the lights, sounds, festivities and merriment of the holiday season on the first Saturday each December as the Chamber kicks off celebrations with its annual Christmas parade.

New Year’s Eve First Night

Ring in the New Year in a family-friendly environment featuring live music, dance performances, face-painting, balloon animals, food truck fare and more as Front Royal celebrates New Year’s Eve First Night.

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