Dover Events, Things to Do and Festivals 2014 / 2015
(Dover, Delaware - DE, USA)
There are usually plenty of things to do and enjoy in the Dover area, with annual events becoming more frequent as spring turns into summer. And if you don't mind traveling outside of the city, then there are plenty of festivities to consider close by, at destinations such as Wilmington, which is just over an hour to the north and hosts regular sports events at its Frawley Stadium, not to mention its Italian-themed extravaganza each June, which draws upwards of 70,000 people.
Lying approximately an hour to the southeast of Dover, Rehoboth Beach offers up an Annual Chocolate Festival each March, a Spring Food and Wine Festival at the end of April, 4th of July fireworks, jazz on the beach in October and independent film screenings every November.
Further annual events take place at neighboring Bridgeville (45 minutes south), Dewey Beach (one hour southeast), Felton (30 minutes south), Fenwick Island (one hour and 20 minutes south), Harington (30 minutes south), Hockessin (one hour north) and Lewes (50 minutes to the southeast), where highlights include the Tulip Fest in April and the British Motorcar Show each May.
In Millsboro, roughly one hour to the south, the Annual Nanticoke Indian Powwow in early September draws crowds to the Nanticoke Indian Museum, while in Winterthur, an hour and 15 minutes to the north of Dover, live bluegrass music sees people gathering along the Clenny Run Bankon the first day of July, August and September. Just 12 minutes to the southwest of Dover, the suburb town of Wyoming lays on all kinds of produce-related festivities, celebrating strawberries (mid-May), peaches (early August) and cider (late November).
In Dover itself, the three-day Firefly Music Festival is not to be missed and draws more than 65,000 people to the city's famous International Speedway each June. Slightly earlier in the month, the Nascar International Speedway Race is another huge event and also takes place again at the end of September. In October, the Annual Delaware Wine and Beer Festival provides the chance to meet local brewers and vineyard owners, and of course, sample their wares.
Dover Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015
- First Friday - first Friday of every month, sponsored performers and artists perform at local downtown businesses, with charities benefiting from a part of the sales during the day.
- Wilmington Library Chocolate Festival - held around Valentine's Day, a chocolate tasting event with a baking competition arranged by Friends of the Wilmington Library.
- St. Patrick's Day Parade - on or around March 17th, a celebration of the history and culture of Ireland.
- Chocolate Festival - at the Convention Center, Rehoboth Beach, just over an hour from Dover, offering the chance to taste the mouthwatering creations entered in this chocolate contest.
- Dewey Beach Popfest - held at Dewey Beach, around one hour from Dover, this four stage event features performances from various up and coming acts.
- Nage Spring Food and Wine Festival - held in late April, in Rehoboth, offering the chance to find out how to pair food with wine, blend your own wine and enjoy a blind tasting.
- Dover Days - held at The Green, with family fun, carnival rides, an inflatables village, an imaginative scavenger hunt, a Delaware Symphony Orchestra concert and much, much more.
- Firefly Music Festival (African American Festival) - a three-day event held in the third full week of June, at the Woodlands, Dover International Speedway. Performances from internationally renowned artists are watched by large audiences, with past performers including both the Killers and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
- Positively Dover (African American Festival) - fourth Saturday of June, at the Legislative Mall. Positively Dover is a celebration and exploration of African culture, and comprises artistic entertainment, food and fun.
- DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival - held in downtown Wilmington. This is a free event run since 1988, in tribute to the jazz trumpeter Clifford Brown, who was actually born in Wilmington in 1930.
- Dover 4th of July - held on Independence Day, incorporating a parade along State Street (ending at The Green), a scavenger hunt through the city's historic sites, children's games and activities, a bell-ringing ceremony and fireworks.
- Delaware State Fair - a ten-day event held from mid-July in Harrington, approximately half an hour from Dover. The state fair is hugely popular and includes carnival rides, livestock exhibitions, demonstrations, concerts and more.
- Delaware Shakespeare Festival - open-air Shakespearean performances take place in front of audiences picnicking under the stars, at Rockwood Park in nearby Wilmington.
- Riverfront Blues Festival - early August, at Wilmington. Outdoor performances take place over a three-day period.
- Amish Country Bike Tour - early September, with the start and finish line at 411 Legislative Avenue. Five distance routes head through the Amish communities and back roads.
- Oktoberfest - third weekend of the month, staged by the Delaware Saengerbund organization, in nearby Newark, within an hour's drive of Dover. Oktoberfest is a true celebration of German culture and comes with much brass band music, traditional dancing and tasty homemade German cuisine.
- Hispanic Heritage Celebration - early October, at the Schwartz Center for the Arts, a weekend event incorporating concerts, films, food and discussions.
- Wine and Beer Festival - third Sunday of the month, at the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village. Beer and wine sampling is accompanied by food from local dining establishments, as well as a corn hole tournament and keg tossing.
- Apple-Scrapple Festival - second week of October in Bridgeville, approximately 40 minutes from Dover. Held since 1992, this event celebrates the agricultural community and features an apple baking contest, craft and trade fairs, a 'scrapple' carving competition, antique crafts demonstrations, carnival rides and live entertainment.
- Celebration of Tourism - held on the first Friday in November, with an awards luncheon and silent auction to celebrate tourism in Kent County.
- World Championship Punkin Chunkin (WCPC) - held over the first weekend after Halloween in Bridgeville, including the tossing of pumpkins by mechanical means.
- Christkindlmarkt - second Saturday of the month, organized by the Delaware Saengerbund organization, in nearby Newark. This Christmas festival and bazaar draws large crowds and serves as a pre-cursor for the Yuletide celebrations of December.
- Home for the Holidays Parade - early December, with the starting point for this seasonal procession being at Spence's Bazaar, South Queen Street.