The summer of 2016 is bound to be a good one. Summer has started early in the Fox Cities and you can feel the anticipation as many communities are getting ready to have their annual festival or music concerts. There is something to do every weekend this summer and you may have to decide between two or three.
Beginning May 28 through late August in Oshkosh, WI is Waterfest. This is a music festival every Thursday night featuring a different band, usually classic rock. It runs from 5:45pm-11:00pm and tickets are $5.00 before 6:00 pm, $8.00 before 7:00 pm, and $15.00 after 7:00pm. Kicking off the series is Irish night with The Tossers, BROTHER, and Belfast Cowboys. June 4th Vic Ferrari, IX Lives, Tim Schweiger, and Middlemen will be playing. June 18th is going to be a busy night with the Gin Blossoms, Three Beer till Dubuque, and Common Time. Another popular night to get there early will be July 16th because the BoDeans are headlining and July 23rd because everyone likes Rusted Root, Benjy Davis Project, and Green Tea. This is a great music festival and very popular so get there early.
Starting June 5th through the 7th is my favorite, the 21st Annual Cheese Festival at Doyle Park in Little Chute, WI. Free cheese tasting, cheesecake contest, and a cheese carving contest. This is a very family-friendly festival and worth the trip. For more information call 1-902-788-7380 ext. 204
In the Fox Cities Country USA is by far the most popular music festival. People from all around the state and even other states come to this music festival. Starting June 24th through the June 28th you can go see Taylor Swift, Montgomery Gentry, Brad Paisley, Dierks Bentley, and Gretchen Wilson. They will be gracing the stages at Ford Festival Park off of U.S. Highway 41 in Oshkosh, WI. Tickets are easy to find and vary from day to day. You can purchase tickets at Express Convenient Centers, Condon Gas Company gas station. It’s usually very hot so drink lots of water!
Every thursday evening in the Houdini Plaza in downtown Appleton you can listen to music for free. It is sponsored by Heid Music and Bud Light Lime. It begins June 25th and the bands are all local. June 25th String Benders opens up the series, July 2nd Half Empty, July 9th Copper Box, July16th Unity the Band, and on July 23rd my favorite local band Sonic Circus will be playing. July 30th Greg Waters and The Broad Street Boogie, August 6th is RPM, August 13th Grand Union, August 20th Box Kar, and the big finale August 27th is the very popular Vic Ferrari.
If you like chicken then you will want to come to Chicken fest June 25th through June 27th. This is an annual festival given by the Kiwanis Club in Darboy. This is a free event located at Darboy Community Park. There will be many local bands playing, paintball, kids’ games, rides, bungee trampolines, and lots of food and beer. Fireworks will be at dusk.
Fourth of July is a big holiday everywhere. There are fireworks displays in just about every town in the area. Appleton Area Jaycees and U.S. Bank will host the fireworks and festival at Appleton Memorial Park. Food, beer, and kids games will be available as well as the universal playground at the park. Neenah and Menasha also have a community festival on July 3rd and July 4th. They kick it all off with a parade of lights on the third and a boat parade in the harbor.
Lifest has become increasingly popular. This year will be the 11th annual Christian Music Festival at Sunnyview Expo in Oshkosh, WI. Every year you can go to Lifest and hear great Christian bands from punk to adult contemporary. This year Toby Mac, 3rd Day, and David Crowder will be there among a few others. They also have a motor cross demonstration and lots of food and games. Tickets for ages 13-adult are $42.00 for one day if purchased before May 31st and $50.00 at the gate.
Of course it wouldn’t be summer in The Fox Cities without the EAA air show. It is one of the largest aviation shows in the world. People from all over the world come to this show. It is so big you can camp right on the EAA grounds, rent a house in the area, get a hotel, or fly in your own homemade aircraft. This year there will be daily air shows, home built aircraft on display, and a 380A Airbus passenger plane (it’s the largest passenger plane in the world). July 27th through August 2nd are the days of this event and the Doobie Brothers will be playing on opening day.
My husband’s favorite festival is Greenville, WI Catfish Extravaganza. Held on August 7th-8th it is the 20th annual held at Greenville Lions Park. Friday is family night and admission is free so come and watch the catfish races! Saturday admission is $45.00 but well worth it because bands like Eddie Money, Everclear, and Puddle of Mudd will be there.
Last but not least and a great way to end the summer is the popular Fox Jazz Fest held September 5-6. Two days of free jazz by local and national artists. It is held at Menasha’s Jefferson Park and musicians like Donald Harrison and Arturo O’Farrill will be there so don’t miss it!