Outdoor enthusiasts will LOVE all the awesome outdoor events and festivals coming up this spring and summer. This week folks can enjoy free entrance to National Parks, the biggest gathering of hikers in Virginia at Damascus Trail Days is right around the corner, several biking festivals are on the horizon, and Dominion Riverrock, the East Coast’s largest outdoor sports and lifestyle festival, is less than a month away! These are just a few of the events highlighted below, with so many more found at www.Virginia.org/outdoors.
National Park Week – April 22-26
Get out this week and enjoy Virginia’s National Parks for free during National Park Week.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge Birding Festival – Suffolk, April 25-27
This annual festival falls during the height of the spring Neotropical songbird migration. Enjoy guided bird walks, owl prowls, bus tours and photography workshops.
Tour of Page County – Page County, April 27-28
The Tour of Page County is a stage race, which is a competition consisting of several races (or stages) in which athletes strive for the best combined overall time – a sort of miniature Tour de France. This event combines the “Hooray for Luray Road Race” on Saturday with Luray Caverns Time Trial on Sunday morning and the Downtown Luray Criterium on Sunday afternoon.
May National Bike Month – to find Virginia events, click here.
Trail Days – Damascus – May 17, 2013
The world’s greatest hiking festival takes place every spring in the quaint town of Damascus – known as Trail Town, USA. The celebration is a well-known Appalachian Trail thru-hikers reunion and ultimate party for more than 20,000 hiking enthusiasts. The festival features gear booths, lectures from footpath pioneers, live bands, a famed parade and plenty of outdoor play time. Reserving lodging early is recommended.
International Migratory Bird Celebration – Chincoteague Island, May 11, 2013
Thousands of shorebirds feed and rest at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge and Fisherman Island during the spring migration. Take in workshops, lectures, bird walks, children’s events, guided tours of Assateague Lighthouse.
Le Tour de Shore – Onancock, May 11, 2013
Explore the Eastern Shore of Virginia Shore by bike on an 18, 55 or 75 mile route – each has rest stops with drinks, snacks and restrooms. This is a family event, with children welcome to participate.
Dominion Riverrock Festival – Richmond, May 17-19, 2013
Drawing more than 65,000 spectators and 4,000 participants in 2012, Dominion Riverrock is an outdoor sports extravaganza in downtown Richmond and is now the largest outdoor sports and music festival in the United States. The festival is full of excitement with competitions in both freestyle and mountain biking, stand up paddleboards, bouldering, kayaking, slacklining and the popular James River Scramble Trail Run. Spectators enjoy the highflying Ultimate Air Dogs, food, live music with a national headliner, exhibits and more.
Tour de Chesapeake Mathews Cycling Festival – Mathews, May 17-19 2013
Tour de Chesapeake is a family-friendly event located in Mathews County, on Virginia’s Middle Peninsula.
Virginia Mountain Bike Trail Festival – Stokesville, May 24-27, 2013
The Virginia Mountain Bike Trail Festival is an event celebrating mountain bicycling in the Virginia National Forests. The festival will feature fun events and great company on a glorious weekend at a private campground nestled against the George Washington National Forest. Many groups will be heading out on rides during the event, and everyone is invited to head out and enjoy the trails.
National Get Outdoors Day (GO Day) – June 8, 2013
All of Virginia State Parks are participating in National Get Outdoors Day (GO Day) 2013, the signature event of Great Outdoors Month. This will be the sixth year of a partnership effort by hundreds of government agencies, recreation and healthcare businesses and nonprofit organizations to introduce America’s youth to the healthy fun of America’s Great Outdoors.
Massanutten HOO-HA! - Harrisonburg, June 8-9, 2013
Some of the best cycling talent from 23 states and Canada can be seen at the Massanutten HOO-HA!, a cross country (US Cup Triple Crown) race that celebrates 25 years in 2013. This race is one of the longest running mountain bike races in Virginia, and offers a clear example of Virginia Class, testing top mountain bikers with Super D, Short Track and XC tracks.
Fat Tire Frenzy – Bedford, June 15, 2013
Mountain bikers will love to pedal Falling Creek Park’s excellent 10-mile network of singletrack trails at this longstanding race in Bedford.
Bike Virginia Tour – Shenandoah Valley, June 21-24, 2013
The destination for the 2013 tour is in the central Blue Ridge. See (by bike) the beauty of the great state of Virginia while biking from Rockbridge-Lexington-Buena Vista to Botetourt and around the Greater Roanoke Region.
Great American Backyard Campout – June 22, 2013
Spend the night camping in Virginia during the Great American Backyard Campout. Thousands of people across the nation will gather in their backyards, neighborhoods, communities and parks to take part in a one-night FREE event that will provide an experience for all generations to connect with nature.