Can't-Miss Summer Concerts and Festivals in Wine Country
Enjoy Broadway artists, acclaimed country singers, local musicians, and more this summer in Sonoma County.
With its warm summer days and cool nights, Sonoma County boasts a full calendar of wonderful outdoor concerts, festivals, and performances. Make plans to get your groove on in Wine Country at one of these annual events.
Every July, the city of Petaluma welcomes more than a dozen locally, regionally, and nationally recognized bands to the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds for its annual summer music festival. An all-day affair, gates open at 11:30 a.m., with live music continuing well after the sun goes down. Spread out on the expansive lawn in front of the main and garden stages, or grab a VIP Premium Ticket for shaded reserved seats under a canopied area, complete with complimentary hors d'oeuvres, wine, and beer.
Celebrating the past, present, and future of this storied genre, the Healdsburg Jazz Festival enjoys a national reputation for artistic excellence, hosting internationally acclaimed jazz musicians, showcasing the area’s foremost jazz performers, and nurturing new talent. Festivals events take place across nine days at various locations throughout the city. Times and ticket prices vary by event.
Surrounded by the luscious landscape and scenic vistas at Jack London State Historic Park, Transcendence’s Broadway Under the Stars brings acclaimed Broadway performers to the quiet city of Glen Ellen. Imagine being serenaded while watching the sun go down and the stars come out … magical! The concerts take place at the majestic ruins of the former Kohler & Frohling Winery for a full-staged evening of song and dance. Food and beverages, including signature wines from local vineyards, are available for purchase.
Tuesdays in the Plaza Concerts, Healdsburg
A true community gathering, hundreds of locals and visitors stake out their blankets and folding chairs early in the day to secure prime viewing of bands playing everything from swing and cool jazz to country and rockabilly at Healdsburg Plaza. Bring a picnic and wine (some regulars bring small, low tables and set up candelabras and flower vases), then settle back in the grass for a variety of acts that often include local favorites and guest artists. The free music runs from 6 to 8 p.m. each Tuesday, with plenty of food vendors, too.
Northern California's largest country music festival, the weekend includes more 20 country artists across two stages on the grassy, five-acre Carnival Field at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. The main Chevy Silverado Stage features 14 nationally known country music artists while six up-and-coming local and regional bands perform on the Redwood Credit Union Stage between the main acts. State-of-the-art staging and sound are enhanced by two 16-foot video walls, showcasing the talents of country music’s hottest stars. Concessions serve beer, wine, spirits and Wine Country food alongside an array of festival activities.
Cloverdale's summer-long, free concert series plays alongside the Farmers Market in the downtown plaza. There's music for everyone, in a weekly changing showcase of alternative country, pop, rock, blues, American rock, soul, funk, salsa, Latin jazz, and indie — even zydeco and Cajun French tunes. For even more family fun, there are food booths, premium Sonoma County wines and craft beers, hand-crafted art for sale, and kids' activities.
Rodney Strong Vineyards Summer Concert Series, Healdsburg
For the past 30 years, fans of Rodney Strong's lavish celebrations have enjoyed seeing intimate performances by world-class musicians in a stunning vineyard setting topped off by sweeping views of the Russian River Valley during their summer concert series. This year's series features three special evenings throughout July, August and September of wine, music, and delicious local food-truck fare. Bring your chairs and blankets and settle in on the vineyard’s Concert Green for a entertaining evening that'll make life-long memories. Tickets should be purchased in advance and prices vary by event.
There's simply too much good music to pack into the small town of Windsor, which is why this weekly event is extremely popular, with thousands of partygoers converging in the Town Green on Thursdays during the summer. The Windsor Certified Farmers Market, complete with food trucks and lawn games, runs from 5 to 8 p.m., and the free music concerts start at 6 p.m.
An authentic taste of centuries-old inspiration, the Valley of the Moon Music Festival takes place across three weekends at the Hanna Boys Center every July. The event is devoted to showcasing classical and romantic chamber music on period instruments, creating a unique experience for music aficionados as well as musicians. Attendees can expect to hear works of composers such as Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, and many others. Individual concert tickets and weekend passes are available to purchase in advance.
The Sonoma County Fair Concert Series, Santa Rosa
As the sun sets on the Sonoma County Fair, the Community Theater lights up with live music from top-notch local and regional performers. Set amid the carnival rides, games, fair food, and wine, the concert series is one of Santa Rosa’s biggest parties of the year. All shows are free to fair attendees. Tickets can be purchased at the door or in advance.