01/01/2020 — 08/04/2020
The variety of annual events nourishes the Birmingham vibe. Here are some of the festivals and events on the schedule for 2020. As some festivals have cancelled or postponed during these times, please check the individual festival website to check the status:
Southern Voices Festival– February 21-22. Hoover Library. The celebration of writing, music and art attracts a full house each year to see and hear the works of noted Southern writers and artists.
The Exceptional Foundation Chili Cook-Off– March 7. Brookwood Village. The 2019 Chili Cook-Off featured 150 cook teams and was attended by over 12,000 people, benefiting The Exceptional Foundation. Enjoy live music, beverages, a kid-zone and all the chili you can eat! Mmm!
Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama– April 3-5. Barber Motorsports Park. The only Indy Series event in the Deep South, this motorsports event draws tens of thousands of race fans every year.
2020 Funky Fish Fry– April 4. Avondale Brewery. Listen to funky music while you chow down on fried catfish and cold beverages. A kid friendly event with face painting, inflatables, a rock wall and sensory-friendly stations.
St. Elias Lebanese Food and Cultural Festival– April 17-18. St. Elias Maronite Church. Now in its 18th year, the festival serves up the very best Lebanese dishes from baked kibbe to baklava.
17th Annual Gardendale Magnolia Festival– April 17-18. Gardendale Civic Center. Enjoy a midway carnival, 150 vendor booths, three stages of live entertainment, a pooch parade, a 5K run/fun run and much more.
Gumbo Gala– April 18. Sloss Furnace. This spicy event has grown into one of the city’s most popular cooking competitions. Proceeds benefit Episcopal Place, which provides affordable, independent living for seniors and disabled adults.
Magic City Art Connection– April 24-26. Linn Park. Birmingham’s largest art festival spotlights 200 juried, fine artists from around the country in all mediums alongside Corks & Chefs: A Taste of Birmingham, Imagination Festival workshops for kids, two performance stages, a cafe and more.
Bob Sykes BBQ and Blues Festival– April 25. This annual event will combine the best of blues music and legendary Bob Sykes BBQ at the beautiful DeBardeleben Park located in historic downtown Bessemer from 12noon- 8pm. The music line-up features Bobby Rush, 2017 Grammy
winning blues legend, Blues Hall of Famer, and 12x Blues Music Award winner of the B.B. King Entertainer of the Year!
46th Annual Southern Appalachian Dulcimer Festival– May 1-3. Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park. The annual dulcimer festival features dulcimer craftsman and musicians from across the country. The festival features a dulcimer making class and beginning and intermediate dulcimer playing classes in the morning before the official stage festival in the afternoon.
Homestead Hollow Arts & Crafts Festival– May 8-10. Springville. See wood carving, blacksmithing, wood stove cooking, quilting, whiskey making at our original working still, tour our original cabins as they were built by the early settlers. Enjoy great food, music and children’s activities.
Magic City Wine Fest– May 9. Birmingham Zoo. Come join us from 5:30pm to 8:30pm as we travel through several different regions spanning the globe. Attendees will be able to drink wine and beer specific to certain regions. Restaurants will also have food available for purchase. The World Tour will be held at the lovely Birmingham Zoo.
Do Dah Day Festival– May 16. Rhodes and Caldwell Parks. Benefitting animal rescue services, this is one of the city’s most wonderful and wacky events. Homemade floats and animals dressed in costume parade the streets of Highland Avenue.
Slicefest– June 6. Lakeview District. 29th St. South outside Slicefest Pizza & Brewhouse. Birmingham’s favorite pizza party is back! This day-long block party features local and regional music artists, craft beers and specialty pizzas.
Annual Caribbean Food and Music Festival– June 13. Bessemer. Starting at 11am and ending at 8pm the festival promises non-stop entertainment featuring steel band music, Reggae and Soca artists, line dancers and even hula hoop for the young and young at heart so come show off your dancing skills, you just might win a prize.
Juneteenth Celebration– June 15. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. The annual Juneteenth celebration, commemorating the end of slavery in the United States, is presented by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.
First Annual Alabama Jazz Festival– July 11. Railroad Park. The First Annual Alabama Jazz Festival will take place under the lights at Railroad Park in the heart of flourishing Parkside District, against the backdrop of the downtown Birmingham skyline.
Secret Stages– August 7-8. Avondale. Secret Stages is a weekend filled with up-and-coming music from local, regional and national talent. Billed as a “music discovery festival,” the event takes place on stages throughout the Avondale area.
Sidewalk Film Festival– August 24-30. Downtown Birmingham Theatre District and other walkable locations. This showcase for independent film has gained wide notoriety in film and consumer publications for its tight organization, range of subject matter and good ol’ weekend fun.
Taste of 4th Avenue Jazz Festival– August 29. Historic 4th Avenue Business District, downtown Birmingham. Enjoy live music, spoken word and vendors at this year’s Taste of 4th Avenue Jazz Festival! Free and open to the public, this event runs from 12 noon-10pm.
Homestead Hollow Arts & Crafts Festival– September 25- 27. Springville. See wood carving, blacksmithing, wood stove cooking, quilting, whiskey making at our original working still, tour our original cabins as they were built by the early settlers. Enjoy great food, music and children’s activities.
Fiesta– September TBD. Linn Park. Alabama’s largest celebration of Hispanic culture is a colorful event in downtown Linn Park. Learn about the many Hispanic countries and their cultures through art, music food and dance. From tortas to tacos and jerk chicken to pupusas, this fest puts on the spread. Here, you’ll find Salvadorian, Caribbean, and Brazilian food, from warm plantains, tapiocas, and quesadillas, to tamales, and corn cups. You can almost smell the homemade tortillas cooking. Come hungry!
The 29th Annual Whistle Stop Festival– September TBD. The Outlet Shops at Grand River, Leeds. Nothing makes us think “Alabama” better than fried green tomatoes. And if what you love about fried green tomatoes includes Fannie Flagg’s novel, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, well, then you might want to check out this local favorite held annually in the charming little downtown of Irondale just east of Birmingham.
The 11th Annual Cahaba River Fish Fry Competition & Festival– October 2. Railroad Park. Each year the Cahaba River Society hosts a catfish cook-off and festival that’s not only good for the planet, but also the palate! This event has become another staple in Birmingham’s dynamic food scene as culinary masters, old and new, battle it out for the top catfish cooking prizes.
Bluff Park Art Show– October 3. Bluff Park Community Center. Some of the finest artists in the country show at this annual event in the Bluff Park neighborhood of Birmingham.
Greek Food Festival– October 8-10. Holy Trinity-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral. Begun in 1972, this widely popular festival embraces the Greek zest for living through food, music, dance and a market of souvenirs.
The Alabama Butterbean Festival– October TBD. Pinson. This down-home gathering tempts you with butterbeans prepared in all sorts of ways, and then offers you one heck of a good time. In fact, if butterbeans aren’t your jam, you might want to come anyway for 12-hours of live music, carnival rides, food, petting zoos, pony rides, and who knows what else!
16th Annual Barber Vintage Festival– October 9-11. Barber Motorsports Park. It’s a motorcycle enthusiast’s dream! Enjoy three days of non-stop action and fun at Birmingham’s premier motorsports park!
2020 Birmingham Oktoberfest– October TBD. Railroad Park. Put on your lederhosen and join us for Birmingham’s biggest German-themed party, Birmingham Oktoberfest 2019! Enjoy a variety of deliciously cold beers, German food, live music, and Oktoberfest-themed games and activities at Railroad Park.
Breakin’ Bread Food, Wine & Beer Festival– October 18. Pepper Place. Come and enjoy a day filled with unlimited food sampling along with craft beer and wine, a makers’ market comprising of craftsmen from Pepper Place Market, a kid’s zone with special activities for children, live musical entertainment and more!
Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)- November 2. Pepper Place. In the Mexican tradition, the festival commemorates the deaths of loved ones through music and dance.
Christmas Village Festival– November 4-8. Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Exhibition Halls. Mothers and daughters, sisters, and friends begin their holiday shopping by meeting in Birmingham the first weekend in November to enjoy an amazing variety of gift ideas- all under one roof.
Moss Rock Festival – November TBD. Moss Rock Preserve. This eco-creative festival in the Birmingham suburb of Hoover explores Nature, SmartLIVING, Art + Design and features 100 juried artists & makers, a smart living market & sweetery, hikes and outdoor activities, the Beer Garden craft tasting event, music, food, kids studios, and other special design features like tiny homes.
The 38th Annual St. Nicholas Slavic/ Russian Food Festival– November TBD. St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, Brookside. The dishes are all prepared from recipes handed down from relatives and friends who immigrated to Brookside from Russia, Ukraine, and Slovakia. After having your borscht and borodinsky, you’ll want to enjoy a kolachie for dessert and take a tour of the remarkable St. Nicholas temple. You’ll find it a beautiful way to top off a fall full of festivals. Prijatnogo appetita!
Homestead Hollow Arts & Crafts Festival– November 11-13. Springville. See wood carving, blacksmithing, wood stove cooking, quilting, whiskey making at our original working still, tour our original cabins as they were built by the early settlers. Enjoy great food, music and children’s activities.
National Veterans Day Parade – November 11. Downtown Birmingham. Birmingham has the oldest and one of the largest Veterans Day celebrations in the country.