Rochester Festivals

Rochester Festivals – Six in the City

“Festival season” in Rochester runs from May to September. There are, of course, hundreds of annual events throughout the greater Rochester area, even in the middle of winter. For now, we’ll just focus on the six most popular summertime Rochester festivals!

Outdoor Concert Lilac Fest
Lilac Fest

Rochester Lilac Festival

May 8 – 17, 2020

Lilac Fest is a week-long food & music festival celebrating Rochester’s lilac collection in Highland Park. There are early evening concerts with smaller performances throughout the day—all free!

Summertime in Rochester: Eastman Theatre Jazz Fest
Jazz Fest

Rochester International Jazz Festival

June 19-27, 2020

Jazz Fest is a week-long music event with performances throughout the city, centralized on Rochester’s East End and Eastman Theatre. There are ticketed events for major headliners and club performances, plus dozens of free concerts on outdoor stages.

Photo courtesy of Corn Hill Arts Festival

Corn Hill Arts Festival

July 11-12, 2020

Corn Hill Fest is a weekend art & music festival in Rochester’s historic Corn Hill neighborhood. It originated in 1968.

Park Ave Festival Rochester Berkeley
Park Ave Fest

Park Ave Summer Art Festival

August 1-2, 2020

Park Ave Fest is a weekend art & music festival in Rochester’s historic Park Ave neighborhood. It extends 1¼ miles from Alexander Street to Culver Road. Not only are there vendors set up along each side of the street, Park Ave merchants are open offering even more shopping and dining options.

Clothesline Arts Festival
Clothesline Fest

Clothesline Festival

September 12-13, 2020

The weekend arts festival is held on the Memorial Art Gallery grounds. It originated in 1957. Your Clothesline Festival stamp also includes museum admission!

Fringe Fest Massaoke
Massaoke at Fringe

Rochester Fringe Festival

September 15-26, 2020

The 12-day-long Fringe Fest features hundreds of shows of which half are Fringe-produced, and half are venue-curated talent. Centered in Rochester’s East End, you’ll find crowd-favorites like the Spiegelgarden, Spiegeltent, Pedestrian Drive-In, and major Friday-Saturday events like Plasticiens Volants in Pearl: Secrets of the Sea and Massaoke. There are even special Kid’s Day events!

Geneseo Airshow Nick Tahous cover

Looking for more City of Rochester festivals and events?

Food Truck Rodeo, last Wednesday night of the month, April through September

Rochester International Films Festival, April

Rochester Erotic Arts Festival, April

Fast Forward Film Festival, April

Zoo Brew, Fridays nights, once a month May through September, with special events throughout the year

Rochester Greek Festival, May

Greater Rochester Teen Book Festival, May

Rochester Dachshund Parade, May

Party in the Park, Thursday nights, June through August

Concerts by the Shore, Wednesday nights, June through August

Maplewood Rose Festival, June

Rochester International Jewish Film Festival, June

Bands on the Bricks, Friday nights, July and August

Middays at Midtown, noon-2pm Wednesdays, July and August

ROC Pride Week, July

Little Italy Festival, July

Rochester International Air Show, August

Puerto Rican Festival, August

Gateway Music Festival, biennial in August

St. Stanislaus Polish Arts Festival, August

Ukrainian Arts & Craft Festival, August

Rochester Teen Film Festival, August

Rochester VegFest, September

ROC the Riverway Weekend, October

Rochester Fashion Week, October

Seneca Park ZooBoo, October

Rochester Maker Faire, November

High Falls Film Festival, November

Light Up the Holidays and Roc Holiday Village, December

It’s a Wonderful Life in the South Wedge, December

Lakeside Winter Celebration + Polar Plunge, February

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Summertime in Rochester

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The term street art means different things to different people. Here, we interpret street art to mean any outdoor, free, public wall art. 

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Which are your favorite Rochester festivals?

Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!


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COVID-19 NOTE: Some of the information you find in our articles may currently be inaccurate due to closures and cancellations.

Please follow the most current recommendations from the CDC and New York State for spending time away from your home. The great outdoors can provide a well needed respite & escape during stressful times. Please move quickly through parking lots, trail heads, and scenic areas. If crowded, choose a different park, trail, or time to visit. Please day trip responsibly.