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5 Events You Won't Want to Miss in St. Louis This Summer

Jul 18, 2018 | Around Town

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With summer in full swing, there are many ways to enjoy the season in St. Louis. In a city known for its free cultural attractions, the Gateway City provides plenty of entertaining festivals and attractions you won’t want to miss. Here are 5 great events to catch this summer in St. Louis:

World’s Fare Heritage Festival

When: August 17-19, 2018

Where: World’s Fair Pavilion in Forest Park


This mid-August event celebrates the heritage and community of St. Louis. This year marks the 5th annual celebration, and they promise to deliver a weekend full of art, history, music, and performance. It’s a free event, and visitors can expect plenty of live musical acts on their main stage. Genres span from Blues to Rock to Hip-hop, highlighting St. Louis’ musical heritage. The World’s Fare Heritage Festival will also include an Artists’ Village with showcased works, immersive installations, and live art-making. The 1904 World’s Fair Society will share historic memorabilia, putting a spotlight on the region’s past. Expect dance performances on their Kranzberg Performing Arts Stage and family-friendly entertainment in the Kids Island zone.


Bommarito Automotive 500 Verizon IndyCar Series Race

When: August 25, 2018 at 7PM; Coors Light Pole Night qualifying August 24

Where: Gateway Motorsports Park; Madison, IL


In its second year, the Bommarito Automotive IndyCar race is happening at the Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, IL, just a 15-minute drive from downtown St. Louis. If you enjoy watching the races or appreciate vintage cars, this is a must-visit event. The event kicks off at 7:00PM with pre-race entertainment and a large exhibition of vintage Indy cars. If you can grab your tickets before August 11th, you’ll be rewarded with free admission to the Coors Light Pole Night qualifying event on August 24th as well as registration for prize drawings. They’ll also provide post-race entertainment, so come expecting an exciting evening.


International Institute's Festival of Nations

When: August 25, 2018 10AM-7PM, August 26, 2018 10AM-6PM

Where: Tower Grove Park


The Festival of Nations is a wonderful free event you won’t want to miss in St. Louis this summer. Held during the weekend of August 25-26th, it’s a multiethnic celebration put on by the International Institute which works towards welcoming and aiding new Americans in St. Louis. The multicultural celebration is an exciting family-friendly event with diverse ethnic foods and traditional dancing and music. They’ll also have live folk art demonstrations, educational exhibits, and an international bazaar where you can take home eclectic gifts from around the globe. Check out their website for information on the free shuttle service to the event.


Big Muddy Blues Festival

When: Labor Day Weekend 2018: August 31 - September 2; 3-11PM each day

Where: Laclede’s Landing


Blues-lovers gather at the Big Muddy Blues Festival at Laclede’s Landing on Labor Day weekend. This is the only blues festival in the area, and it kicks off in the historic district along the Mississippi River. With several outdoor and indoor stages, they’ll host performances by local and national acts. Now in its 23rd year, the Big Muddy is a family-friendly weekend event with over 65 bands to enjoy. The Friday night show is free, and you can purchase day passes for the Saturday and Sunday shows online.


Annual Japanese Festival

When: Labor Day Weekend 2018: September 1-3

Where: Missouri Botanical Garden


The Missouri Botanical Garden is a popular spot year-round, and it’s especially beautiful in the summer. Be sure not to miss their premier summer event on Labor Day weekend. The Japanese Festival is a three-day celebration highlighting Japanese culture and traditions. You can tour the Japanese garden, check out art exhibits, and explore various traditions like kimono demonstration and tea ceremonies. They’ll also have traditional music and dancing, taiko drumming, and theatrical performances. The event is complete with Japanese food and cooking demonstrations. With arts and crafts and interactive activities, this event is a great option for the whole family.



The Gateway City has plenty of summer festivals and events to keep you entertained. Whether you’re looking to delve into the music and history of St. Louis, experience the exciting sights and sounds at the racetrack, or celebrate and explore international cultures, St. Louis delivers.

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