May Events & Festivals in PA

Spring has sprung in Pennsylvania! Whether you’re dining under the stars, reeling in your next big catch, or dancing at a local music festival, there are so many ways to get outside this month with exciting events happening all across PA.

1. Dining Under the Stars

Every spring in Media, Dining Under the Stars transforms the bustling main street in this small town into a pedestrian-friendly piazza full of outdoor dining and shopping with State Street closed from Jackson to Orange. You’ll find kids drawing with sidewalk chalk, see store owners chatting with patrons, and hear music echoing between the buildings. It’s a little bit of the weekend right in the middle of the work week!

When: Wednesdays, May-Sep.    
Where: Media    
Cost: Price varies

2. Stewartstown Night Market

As the warm evenings return, Stewartstown Night Market makes its seasonal debut at Aviator Brew Hub. Enjoy a Friday night out at this unique outdoor market under the stars. Go out dancing for date night with live music or bring the whole family for family-friendly activities every other weekend. Complete with food trucks, handmade and artisanal products from local businesses, and community bonding, the Night Market is a perfect way to spend your summer evenings.

When: First and Third Fridays, May 3-Oct. 18    
Where: Stewartstown 
Cost: Free

3. Hameau Artist Retreat

gaint cow structure
Hameau Artist Retreat

Spend a week painting serene countryside landscapes in PA at the Hameau Artist Retreat. Hosted on Hameau Farm in picturesque Big Valley, this artist retreat is a great getaway for creative spirits whether you’re a dabbler or professional, an oil painter or pastelist. Learn new techniques, test complimentary art supplies, and make fantastic friends. Get inspired by the panoramic views of the surrounding Amish farmland, vineyards, creek, and mountains.

When: May 7-11  
Where: Belleville    
Cost: Price varies

4. Longwood Garden's Festival of Fountains

Soak in a warm summer evening exploring the vibrant and illuminated fountain performances during Longwood Garden’s Festival of Fountains. Each week from Thursday through Saturday, take the whole crew to enjoy the colorful water spectacle during daytime fountain shows set to music and beautifully illuminated nighttime performances. Happening all summer long, the fountain shows are included with your admission!

When: May 9-Oct. 27    
Where: Kennett Square    
Cost: Included with admission

5. Red Oak Campground Chainsaw Carving & Craft Festival

an artist carving a bear out of a wood log using chainsaw
Red Oak Campground Chainsaw Carving & Craft Festival

Experience art with an edge at the Chainsaw Carving & Craft Festival and watch as master carvers turn wood stumps into works of art right before your eyes! Purchase handmade carvings from the artists themselves or bid on your favorite creation during the carvers’ auction. Make it a Mother’s Day getaway and stay the entire weekend at the Red Oak Campground in Russell in the Pennsylvania Wilds region where you can make handmade gifts for mom and enjoy Mother’s Day breakfast on Sunday at the cafe. Best of all, mom eats for free!

When: May 10-11    
Where: Russell    
Cost: Included with booking

6. 116th Bethlehem Bach Festival

a person leading a choir
116th Bethlehem Bach Festival

Guess who’s Bach again? Enjoy the symphonies of Johann Sebastian Bach and other famous composers at the 116th Bethlehem Bach Festival. This two-weekend, classical music fest features The Bach Choir, Bach Festival Orchestra, and distinguished classical music soloists, performers, and scholars. Classical concertos take over concert halls, coffee shops, museums, and outdoor spaces across Downtown Bethlehem and the Historic Moravian District.

When: May 10-11, 17-18    
Where: Bethlehem    
Cost: Price varies

7. Mifflin Soaring Association's Region 2 Soaring Contest

two persons sitting inside glider cabin
Mifflin Soaring | Credit: Piet Barber

Calling all glider gurus! Join the crowds flying in from all over the U.S. and Canada to the Soaring Contest at the Mifflin County Airport. Find the perfect spot near the tarmac and watch as gliders try to outlast the competition and stay in the air as long as possible. Stay overnight and explore the walkable streets in Mifflin, a charming small town that’s about a 30-minute drive from State College.

When: May 13-19    
Where: Reedsville    
Cost: Free

8. Phoenixville Dogwood Festival and Parade

A beloved community tradition since 1943, Phoenixville's annual Dogwood Festival and Parade honors the soldiers who fought and died in WWII and memorialized with a dogwood tree planted in Reeves Park decades ago. Held on Armed Forces Day, this year’s Dogwood Parade promises to be bigger and better than ever with a celebration of Phoenixville Borough's 175th birthday and the Phoenixville Fire Department's 150th birthday. The festival itself is known for its fun-packed carnival atmosphere, complete with classic food, vendors, and games, it’s no wonder why families keep coming back each year.

When: May 15-18   
Where: Phoenixville   
Cost: Free

9. May Mart Garden & Vendor Expo

Garden plants in plots
May Mart Garden & Vendor Expo | Credit: Indiana Garden Club 

Dust off your green thumb for growing season at May Mart in Indiana! Spruce up your garden or house plant collection with a wide selection of annuals, perennials, and shrubs from local nurseries. Browse the crafty vendors for handcrafted decor, handy tools, and cute gardening gifts. Eat a tasty treat from local food vendors such as a traditional mushroom sandwich or some strawberry pie. For more than 35 years, May Mart has brought the blooms to Western PA with proceeds benefiting local scholarships and community beautification.

When: May 17-18   
Where: Indiana   
Cost: $1

10. Edinboro Art and Music Festival

An artist performing banjo
Edinboro Art and Music Festival

Downtown Edinboro gets in the groove for the Edinboro Art and Music Festival, a three-day event that celebrates the spirit of Appalachian culture through grassroots art and music. This small Pennsylvania town invites visitors to embrace the heart and soul of Erie County with community artists, educators, and performers. Feel the excitement of Edinboro with live performances and even learn to play string instruments such as the banjo and fiddle! Bring the little ones for the children’s tent, sing-a-longs, and interactive art workshops. Don’t forget to take a piece of this close-knit community home with you by buying from local artisans and food vendors.

When: May 17-19   
Where: Edinboro   
Cost: Free

11. Pleasure Valley Raceway Motocross Events

a person riding a dirt bike
Pleasure Valley Raceway Motocross Events

Rev your engines and feel the adrenaline rush near Johnstown at Pleasure Valley Raceway! This AMA-sanctioned PAMX motocross facility is hosting high-octane and action-packed motocross events on two weekends in May and more throughout the summer and fall. Whether you’re a die-hard motocross fan or an outdoor adventure-seeker, camp overnight for free in Pleasure Valley and enjoy Pennsylvania’s great outdoors. Make it a weekend getaway and travel through the Laurel Highlands with stops at Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Ohiopyle, and Fallingwater.

When: May 18-19 
Where: Seward
Cost: Price varies

12. Kinzua Cup Fishing Tournaments

scenic view of mountains by lake
Kinzua Cup Fishing Tournaments

Get your fishing poles ready for the 2024 Kinzua Cup Big Fish and Walleye Fishing Tournaments at the Allegheny Reservoir. The tournaments were originally created to maintain and promote the beauty and available fishing opportunities of the reservoir. Sign up to participate, or simply sit back and enjoy watching fisherman compete to catch the largest fish, with prizes for the biggest catch.

When: May 17 (rules meeting) 18-19 (fishing tournaments)   
Where: Bradford   
Cost: $300 registration for participants; Free admission for general public

13. WWII Living History Reenactment Weekend

A group of people dressed in wwii uniforms for reenactments
WWII Living History Reenactment Weekend

History repeats itself during the Living History Reenactment Weekend at the Eldred WWII Museum. Historians can relive their favorite facts about WWII or learn something new from reenactors hailing from Pennsylvania, neighboring states, and Canada. Living history exhibits will be set up throughout the museum for visitors to talk with reenactors and learn about their uniforms and artifacts from the 1940s.

When: May 18-19   
Where: Eldred   
Cost: Free

14. Kish Creek Trout Tournament

a person holding a trout caught
Kish Creek Trout Tournament

Answer the call of the wild at one of the largest trout fishing tournaments in PA! Cast your line in the Juniata River Valley at the Kish Creek Trout Tournament. Spring is an exciting and busy time for fishers and spectators alike to learn about the allure of PA’s creeks and rivers.

When: May 18-19   
Where: Reedsville   
Cost: $40 registration for participants; Free admission for general public

15. Portersville Steam Show Spring Gas-Up

a couple driving steam engine tractor
Portersville Steam Show | Credit: Butler County Tourism

Join Portersville Steam Show for their Spring Gas-Up! Kick right into high gear with a wide variety of activities, including train and loom displays, craft building, tractor pulls, and a flea market, plus displays that feature tons of tractors with gas engines, steam engines, and pedal power.

When: May 18-19   
Where: Portersville   
Cost: $5; Free for children under 11

16. Westsylvania Jazz and Blues Festival

an artist holding a mic
Westsylvania Jazz and Blues Festival | Credit: Laura Carbone 

Enjoy big sounds in a small town during Westsylvania Jazz and Blues Festival! A one-and-a-half-hour drive from Pittsburgh, downtown Indiana is the hometown of PA’s movie icon, Jimmy Stewart, It’s a Wonderful Life winter celebration, and this world-class music festival. Acclaimed jazz and blues musicians from across the region play the soothing sounds of saxophones, bass, and trumpet. Experience the chill atmosphere, fill up on food and drinks from local vendors, and immerse yourself in the world-class music festival in this quintessential small PA town.

When: May 24-25   
Where: Indiana   
Cost: Free

17. Mayfair Festival of the Arts

The beloved Mayfair Festival of the Arts returns once again to Cedar Crest College’s west Allentown campus to herald the arrival of summer. This year’s festival celebrates Lehigh Valley artists and community with live music, arts and crafts, and local food all weekend. Dance and sing along to PA bands and musicians on Mayfair's two stages. Wander the beautiful Cedar Crest College campus with its peaceful arboretum and gardens, browse local artists and vendors, and grab lunch from the many delicious food trucks!

When: May 24-26   
Where: Allentown   
Cost: Free

18. One Hundred Nights of Taps

A uniformed military bugler plays a trumpet during a ceremony, wearing a red and gold cap with medals on his chest.
One Hundred Nights of Taps

For the eighth year in a row, One Hundred Nights of Taps is ready to ring out another season in Gettysburg. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, notes of “Taps” fill the air every evening at 7:00 p.m. as the famous 24-note call is sounded in Gettysburg National Cemetery. Join free tours of the cemetery that explore the aftermath of the Battle of Gettysburg. After listening to the nightly bugle call played by local musicians, servicemembers, and veterans, stay for live performances of historical vignettes that change each night.

When: May 27-Sep. 2   
Where: Gettysburg   
Cost: Free

19. Erie's Wild Rib Cook Off and Music Festival

ribs cooking on grill
Erie's Wild Rib Cook Off and Music Festival

Erie's Wild Rib Cook Off and Music Festival, also known as “Erie Rib Fest,” has been a smokin’ hot event in Erie for 32 years! Watch the competition start burning up between award-winning BBQ rib cooking teams featured on the Food Network. More than 50,000 visitors travel to Erie for finger-licking barbecue and a family-friendly festival with main stage musicians, games with prizes, and carnival rides and inflatables.

When: May 29-Jun. 1   
Where: Erie   
Cost: Free

20. 50th Annual Street Rod Nationals East

Thousands of colorful street rods and muscle cars will be cruising into York for the 50th Annual National Street Rod Association Nationals East meet and parade. Admire the polished chrome, immaculate detailing, and luxurious interiors of restored antique street rods. This action-packed, family-friendly weekend features an annual parade, swap meet, live entertainment and exhibitors, a pin-up contest, and children’s games.

When: May 31-Jun. 2   
Where: York   
Cost: Price varies

Visit our website to find more events and follow us on Facebook, X (Twitter), Pinterest, YouTube, Threads, and Instagram to stay up-to-date on even more great ideas and places to visit around our state.

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