By Josette Keelor
Winchester's Friday Night Live will kick off three days of events that include the Winchester Barn Dance and Civil War walking tours, music and dancing in Woodstock and Front Royal, and antiques and airplanes in Harrisonburg.
Friday in Woodstock, the Vintage Woodstock Festival wants to spell tourism success for Shenandoah County through an event bursting with music, food and art -- "everything you can imagine," said Jane Beasley, town enhancement coordinator.
Musicians, food vendors, artisans and crafters will set up in and around the courthouse at 6 p.m., with a wine and beer garden and children's activities. Featured artwork from the Virginia Tourism Corporation will proclaim its "Virginia is for Lovers" theme using 16-foot long, 6-foot tall letters spelling the word "LOVE."
"We just thought it would be a cool new thing and also encourages tourism," Beasley said.
The town encourages visitors to share photos online at Facebook.com/Virginiaisforlovers and on Twitter using #LoveVirginia and #VintageWoodstock.
Following the 4:30 p.m. grand opening of the historic courthouse, tours will continue until 9 p.m. at the courthouse and the Woodstock Museum and Wickham House at 104 S. Muhlenburg St.
Admission for the beer and wine garden, a fundraiser for the Woodstock Chamber, is $5 and includes a commemorative festival cup and first glass of wine or beer.
A street dance until 10 p.m. will feature The Robbie Limon Band. West Court Street will be closed for the free festival and street dance. For information and weather updates, call 459-3621 or visit www.townofwoodstockva.gov.
Winchester's Friday Night Live will launch its summer season with a beach themed event from 5 to 11 p.m. on the Loudoun Street Pedestrian Mall. Beach music will play at the Hable Street parking lot beginning at 5:30 p.m. with Stable Roots of Waynesboro and continuing at 7:30 p.m. with the Jimmy Buffet tribute band Parrot Beach of Sparta, N.J. Tickets to the Hable Parking Lot are $5 in advance and $10 at the gate.
The Shenandoah Arts Council and Winchester Art Market will sell locally made art and crafts at the north and south ends of the walking mall. Street performers will include musical artists, a magician, a juggler, a mime and family friendly entertainment.
The Best Beach Outfit contest will judge guests on Hawaiian shirts and their best flip flops and award the winner with tickets to the next Friday Night Live, on July 18. The third summer event will be on Aug. 15.
In Front Royal, the Gazebo Gatherings outdoor concert at 414 E. Main St. will feature the American Legion Community Band beginning from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday. The concert is free, but donations will go to the Salvation Army and C-CAP. Information: 635-6828, www.alcband.org
Saturday and Sunday in Harrisonburg, the Heart of the Shenandoah Valley Antiques Fair from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days at the Rockingham County Fairgrounds, 4808 S. Valley Pike, will feature music by the Grim Pickers, food, wine tasting and vendors offering design example from the last 300 years. Admission is $10. Information: www.dfshows.com
Also this weekend:
• The Winchester Barn Dance to support Blue Ridge Hospice will be at the historic Cloverdale Barn, 2368 Cedar Creek Grade, from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and entertainment will feature The Cash Express playing Johnny Cash music. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door, available at various area locations including Italian Touch in Middletown, Southern States in Stephens City, Shenandoah Valley Artworks in Strasburg and Jean's Jewelers in Front Royal or online at www.winchesterbarndance.weebly.com.
• Guided Civil War Walking Tours in and around Winchester will continue every weekend, June to October. This Saturday, tours at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. will be at the Kernstown Battlefield, 610 Battle Park Drive, Kernstown.
Other tours are at 6 p.m. on first and second Fridays in Old Town Winchester, 5 p.m. on second Saturdays in Middletown and 10:30 a.m. on fourth Saturdays at the Newtown History Center, 5408 Main St., Stephens City.
A two-hour guided driving tour of Cedar Creek Battlefield led by a National Park Service ranger will be at 2 p.m. on first Saturdays.
The Winchester and Stephens City tours are $5 per person. The other tours are free. Wear comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing. Tours will be canceled in the event of rain or inclement weather. Information: Winchester-Frederick County Visitors Center at 542-1326
• The 30th Annual Ray Gordon Memorial Jumbo Fly-In at the Harrisonburg Flying Field Saturday and Sunday will invite the Mid-Atlantic region's modelers to fly large model airplanes and share their love of airplanes. Spectators get in free, and concessions will be available. Bring a lawn chair or blanket. Information: 746-1892
• On Sunday the 21st Harrisonburg-Rockingham African-American Festival will be from noon to 6 p.m. at Ralph Sampson Park, celebrating African-American heritage, achievements and contributions through fellowship, crafts, art, music, food and vendors. Information: 395-3378, www.hraaf.org
Contact staff writer Josette Keelor at 540-465-5137, ext. 176, or firstname.lastname@example.org