Cincinnati Events and Festivals 2014 / 2015

(Cincinnati, Ohio - OH, USA)

The cultural scene present in the Cincinnati of today is very much of fusion of Italian and German influences, with many of the immigrants bringing various events and beliefs with them from the late 19th century onwards.

Countless annual festivals, concerts and sporting events draw literally thousands to the city each year, being hosted by venues such as the indoor US Bank Arena, the Cincinnati Gardens, the Duke Energy Convention Center, the university's Fifth Third Arena, the Palace Theatre and the Taft Theatre, amongst others.

Established in 2004 and based within the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, the city's popular Cincy Fringe Festival has grown to become the biggest of its kind in Ohio and lasts for just under two weeks, being a celebration of visual art, music, comedy and theatre. Also at this time of the year is the hugely popular Taste of Cincinnati, where fine cuisine and wine go hand in hand with live music, attracting crowds of more than 500,000 people.

National Public Holidays

  • 1st January - New Year's Day
  • Third Monday in January - Martin Luther King Day
  • 12th February - Lincoln's Birthday
  • Third Monday in February - Washington's Birthday
  • Last Monday in May - Memorial Day
  • 4th July - Independence Day
  • First Monday in September - Labor Day
  • Second Monday in October - Columbus Day
  • 11th November - Veterans Day
  • 4th Thursday in November - Thanksgiving
  • 25th December - Christmas Day

Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015


  • KOI Auto Parts Cavalcade of Customs - mid-January, based at the Duke Energy Convention Center and featuring all sorts of hotrods, dragsters, custom vans and monster trucks


  • Cincy Winter Beerfest - mid-February, lasting a week, with more than 300 different beers to sample drawing in excess of 10,000 visitors. The Beerfest takes place at the Duke Energy Convention Center and incorporates live music, 'Meet the Brewer' nights and brewing-themed dinners


  • International Wine Festival - early March, an extravaganza of different wines from across the globe, with winery dinners, a charity auction and a 'special tasting room'. This wine fest is based at the Duke Energy Convention Center on Elm Street
  • St. Patrick's Day - mid March, the second-largest parade of its kind in the country, attracting residents from Ohio, as well as Northern Kentucky. This Irish-themed parade was first held in the mid-1960s and begins at midday, heading along Second Street, Main Street, Fifth Street and Elm Street


  • Cincinnati Reds Opening Day - this is the day when the whole city dons red baseball caps


  • May Festival - mid-May, the longest-running choral and orchestral event in the country, held over two consecutive weekends and offering world-famous opera singers, as well as the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Cincinnati Boys Choir
  • Cincy Fringe Festival - late May to early June, with theatrical performances, film screenings and comedy gigs galore starting on the day after Memorial Day
  • Taste of Cincinnati - Memorial Day weekend, held in the middle of downtown since 1979 and featuring live music and the city's 50 most talented chefs, cooking up a storm for thousands of eager tasters


  • Panegyri Greek Festival - mid-June, held at the Holy Trinity-Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and featuring authentic Greek food, art shows and various cultural activities
  • Zoo Babies - popular among children, Cincinnati Zoo brings its young out on display
  • Cincinnati Pride Alive Festival - a three-day gay-themed event, attracting in the region of 50,000 people


  • Independence Day - July 4th, celebrations and endless entertainment
  • Coors Lite Jazz Festival - mid July, the biggest blues and jazz festival in the country, featuring all the big names and legends


  • Great Inland Seafood Festival - held at Sawyer Point Park and featuring a bewildering array of delicious seafood, as well as nightly entertainment
  • Midwest Region Black Family Reunion - late August, a celebration of African American culture with concerts, stalls and educational exhibits
  • Cincy Blues Fest - mid-August, based alongside the Ohio River, founded in 1992 and now America's biggest all-volunteer Blues Festival in existence. Three to four stages are erected at the Sawyer Point Park, with each offering themed performances, such as the Arches Boogie Woogie Piano Stage. Lasting three days, VIP tickets are available for the entire event
  • Senior PGA Tour Championship - late August, held at the golf center of Kings Island, where legends of the game converge to compete for almost a million dollars in prize money


  • Riverfest - Labor Day weekend, a perennial favorite celebrating the end of summer with fireworks and nationally recognized musicians and entertainers, doing their thing in front of half a million people lining both sides of the Ohio River
  • Oktoberfest - mid-September, six blocks of the downtown district are transformed into a German village complete with over 50 food vendors selling bratwurst and schnitzels. There is also much live entertainment and plenty of beer
  • Cincinnati Film Festival - September / October, based at the Emery Theatre and the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, with numerous screenings from many different countries
  • MidPoint Music Festival (MPMF) - late September, staged at venues within the Over-the-Rhine district, where the idea was originally born in 2002


  • Cincinnati Flower and Farm Fest - early October, a popular tradition held annually at Coney Island and featuring floral displays, interactive exhibits, rides and market stalls


  • PNC Festival of Lights - late November to December, a total of two million colorful lights decorate Cincinnati Zoo, drawing crowds. Visitors can expect puppets, themed shows, train rides and a light show, next to Swan Lake


  • New Years' Eve - December 31st, festivities take place throughout the city, including parties and midnight fireworks