It’s summer 2022 and it’s official: WE’RE OUTSIDE AGAIN! Since this is the first proper summer since the pandemic began, you might be a bit overwhelmed with all of the events that are scheduled. Don’t worry! Very Local New Orleans has you covered with the “we’re back outside and this is what’s happening” schedule of all the summer events in New Orleans worth doing and seeing!
Things to do in New Orleans this Summer
Essence Festival of Culture
Caesars Superdome & Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
June 30 – July 3
Essence Fest is easily the biggest festival of the summer in New Orleans. This “party with a purpose” features everything from health, beauty, and lifestyle seminars to food experiences and a film festival. But, by far, the biggest thing at Essence is the performers. This year, Janet Jackson, Jazmine Sullivan, New Edition, and Patti LaBelle are just a few of the artists who will be taking the Essence stage.
Uncle Sam Jam
Uncle Sam Jam is a free Jefferson Parish festival with live music, food, and a fireworks show. This year, headliners include Cowboy Mouth and The Topcats.
Go 4th on the River
Crescent Park and Mississippi Riverfront
What better way to celebrate the 4th of July than on the riverfront? Go 4th on the River hosts an annual event with live music and a free fireworks show.
San Fermin in Nueva Orleans (Running of the Bulls)
The Sugar Mill
Running of the Bulls New Orleans-style is back! Crowds of people will be hitting the streets to run from roller girls with soft bats, and it’s all for a good cause. The run itself will take place at 9 a.m. on July 9. Meet at The Sugar Mill by 8 a.m. for food, drinks, and music. After the run, there are plenty more activities to enjoy, including a post-run party back at The Sugar Mill. Tickets are required, and they go fast, so get yours now!
Tales of the Cocktail
If you’re a cocktail lover, Tales of the Cocktail (TOTC) is the event for you. Over five days, TOTC holds events, celebrations, educational seminars, and more. Not only can you learn how to mix a good drink, but you can learn how to open your own bar or start your own cocktail business. Enjoy a tour of various cocktails or attend a tasting held by companies such as Jack Daniel’s and Ciroc. This is Tales of the Cocktail’s twentieth anniversary, and they are going big with the events, so get your tickets now!
Fidelity Bank White Linen Night
Warehouse District/Julia St. 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Every year, White Linen Night celebrates New Orleans’ art scene with a block party on Julia St. Visitors spend the evening dipping in and out of art galleries and enjoying wine and snacks. As the name suggests, wearing white is very much encouraged and you don’t have to be an art nut to have a good time; there’s something for everyone at White Linen Night! After the block party, the fun isn’t over—an after-party will be held at the Contemporary Arts Center where you can mingle the night away.
Satchmo Summer Fest
New Orleans Jazz Museum
This much-needed music festival in New Orleans celebrates local music artists over the course of two days at the New Orleans Jazz Museum at the mint. While this year’s lineup has yet to be announced, the festival is always a great time with incredible music and delicious food from local vendors.
Red Dress Run
Red Dress Run is a yearly charity event held by the New Orleans Hash House Harriers in which participants don a red dress to raise money for local non-profits. That’s right, this event is to raise money for charity, so do the right thing and pay to participate! Every participant will wear a number to distinguish that they paid to party.
Southern Decadence Fest
This LGBTQ+ event has been happening for over fifty years and is sometimes called “Gay Mardi Gras.” Throughout Labor Day weekend, people come together to party and have a great time celebrating love, freedom, and fun.
City Park Festival Grounds
What better way to close out a list of summer events in New Orleans than a Beignet Festival? If you think that beignets are just fancy powdered donuts, you’re in for a treat. At Beignet Fest, you’ll be able to try an array of sweet and savory beignets of all kinds from multiple vendors. Of course, there will be music, and the fest will serve as a fundraiser with proceeds benefiting community programs that help children with autism and other developmental differences.
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