Festivals & Events

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The Capital City loves a celebration! Montpelier is a vibrant community with a very full festival and event calendar. Below is a general list of events hosted by Montpelier Alive annually so you can get an idea of what we are like. For more event listings, visit the community calendar and individual event pages on this site.   

Montpelier Alive is fortunate to be generously underwritten by National Life Group, VSECU and Community National Bank. Due to the support of local companies like these, and others, almost all Montpelier Alive events are free of charge, and we are always adding events to the calendar. 

In addition to the festivals below, we host business networking events we call "mix and mingles" four times a year. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for event announcements. 

We have many volunteer opportunities assisting our staff with event planning and production. If you are interested in volunteering, email our volunteer coordinator, Jessica Ball, at volunteer@montpelieralive.org. 

We hope you will visit our event calendar and event pages often to see what's new; be sure to print out our event flyer so you never miss out on what's going on downtown. 

See you downtown!
Art Walk 
Seasonally, art lovers are invited into downtown shops and galleries featuring local art on display. Each walk has a food theme highlighting local Vermont food producers.  Art Walks take place the first Fridays of the month in February, May, September, & December. 

Alana LaPoint  at the Drawing Board helps to connect venues and artists for all Art Walks. She can be reached at: staff@drawingboardvt.com.

2016 Art Walk Dates:
Friday, February, 5th, Chocolate Theme
Friday, May, 6th, Maple Theme
Friday, September 2nd, Cheese Theme
Friday, December 2nd, Holiday Baked Goods Theme

If you have Art Walk questions or would like to be added to the Art Walk email distribution list, send an email to the Art Walk coordinator, Yvonne Baab, at artwalk@montpelieralive.org.

Montpelier Mayfest 
So much happens the first weekend in May that we dubbed it Mayfest! Montpelier is alive with more than eighteen annual events taking place, including, on Saturday, the opening day of the Capital City Farmers' Market, the Onion River Bike Swap, Three Penny Taproom's anniversary party called Montbeelier, and lots more. The All Species Day parade, a favorite for locals of all ages, is not to be missed on Sunday. 
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City-Wide Tag Sale  

Spring clean up! Declutter! Take part in a fun and unique community event. Citizens, businesses, churches, civic groups, nonprofits, individual residences and neighborhoods are encouraged to plan a sale.

An organized community approach helps to get people to your sale! This is a great way to maximize your hard work and ensure that your sale is successful. Community-wide tag sales are also a great way to cultivate neighborhood involvement and promote community building, business and tourism.

Sellers get our distinctive lawn signs that, in combination with a city-wide map, take shoppers through town to find treasures of all kinds! Whether you are a shopper or seller, it is a fun day for all!

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Brown Bag Summer Concert Series
Bring your lunch and join us at noon every Thursday throughout the summer in the Christ Church Courtyard on State Street and enjoy live local music.
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Independence Day
It's long been tradition to celebrate Independence Day on July 3rd in the Capital City each year. With the State House Lawn as a backdrop, festival-goers enjoy a day packed with family activities, the best parade in Vermont, more than 35 food and craft vendors, live music, dance performances, and don't forget the fireworks! Some say it's the best day of the year in Montpelier, Vermont. 
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Montpelier Summer Sidewalk Sales
Plan ahead for Summer Side Walk Sales in downtown Montpelier. Enjoy end-of-summer and back-to-school deals at your favorite locally-owned stores. Shop local!
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Moonlight Madness
Downtown Montpelier stores, boutiques and some restaurants celebrate fall in the Capital City with late hours, 6-9 pm, and a sale extravaganza! Plan to come to Moonlight Madness the third Thursday in October. 
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Halloween Pumpkin Carving Contest & Pie Sale
To kick off Moonlight Madness in October, Montpelier Alive invites everyone to come downtown to City Hall Plaza to show off your family’s pumpkin carving skills and win prizes. After working up an appetite carving pumpkins, buy a yummy pie made by some of the best bakers in town and support Montpelier Alive's event fund! 
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Montpelier ArtsFest
The ArtsFest is designed to exhibit the vast and diverse artistic talent in Central Vermont and to provide a chance for seasoned and emerging artists to showcase their talents. Festival goers will take a tour of unique venues throughout downtown Montpelier, each curated by a different community arts group and individual artists, crafters and performers. In addition to the pop up galleries curated by local art groups like Vermont College of Fine Arts, T.W. Wood Gallery and SPA, enjoy live music, fire-breathers, buskers and more. 

Halloween Trick or Treat Downtown
Come downtown to show off your best costumes and trick-or-treat in our downtown stores and businesses. Our local merchants hand out hundreds of pieces of candy, toys and even free books. We invite you to enjoy Halloween in a fun and safe way and to celebrate as a community!
Flannel Friday
Flannel Friday is Montpelier’s cozy version of Black Friday. Wear flannel downtown and enjoy great sales in Montpelier's retail stores. Do your holiday shopping locally!

Small business Saturday, shop local!

Cider Monday
Instead of Cyber-Monday, downtown celebrates Cider Monday. Shop local and enjoy apple cider and other goodies courtesy of Montpelier's local store owners!

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Free Holiday Parking Downtown
Leave your quarters at home and enjoy free two-hour parking for your holiday shopping convenience in downtown Montpelier courtesy of the City of Montpelier. Look for the red holiday meter bags for free parking. 

Cookie Decorating and Santa Arrives in Montpelier
Join us in City Center downtown and decorate holiday cookies with future famous chefs from the New England Culinary Institute, sing carols and await Santa’s arrival. Visit with Santa and make sure he knows what you want for Christmas!
New Year's Eve
Ring in the New Year in downtown Montpelier. Enjoy a mix of family and adult events in town, in addition to great restaurant specials, and music. Make it over to the State House Lawn at 7:30 pm for the best fireworks viewing.