7+ Family-Friendly Summer Festivals in Columbia, SC

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Are you looking for summer festivals near Columbia, SC? Now, the weather has warmed, school is almost over, and already it’s festival season! If you’re planning to get out in Columbia and build memories and experiences this summer, festivals can be a great way to dip your toes in something new. Columbia has festivals year-round, but here are some family-friendly festivals coming up to take in this famously hot season.

First off, get ready to kick things off with some Southern eats!

Summer festivals in Columbia SC

ThunderFest ’24

Sunday, April 28, 2024

Head to Irmo and check out this local music festival at Midland’s Technical College’s Harbison Theater. There will be artists, dancers, musicians, food trucks, art, and more. More information at the ThunderFest website.

Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College, 7300 College St, Irmo, SC
12 pm – 5 pm

Rosewood Crawfish Festival

Saturday, May 4, 2024

Of course, in typical Rosewood neighborhood fashion, this event promises to be full of live music and local artisans. It’s family-friendly, with things for kids including rides, face painting, and crawdad races. Also, kids 12 and under get in free! This event also includes a 5k that begins at 9:30 am and includes free festival admission. This is the Rosewood Crawfish Festival website.

State Fair Grounds at 1200 Rosewood Drive Columbia, SC 29201.
11 am – 7 pm
Tickets are $12 presale and $15 day of

Pickin’ and Piggin’ at the Park (SCBA)

Saturday, May 4, 2024

Or, if you’re feeling a little more down to earth, enjoy more than 20 BBQ cooks best at this cook-off in the park. Beer will also be available for purchase. The event is all-you-can-eat at Columbia’s most accessible park with music by Randy Lucas Trio. See the Pickin’ and Piggin’ website for more.

Saluda Shoal’s Park, 5605 Bush River Road, Columbia, SC 29212 United States
11 am – 1:30 pm
Adults (13+) $15
Children (12 and Under) $5

Main Street Caribbean Festival

June 6th – June 9th , 2024

Next up, another family-friendly, cultural festival. What’s more, it’s free! So, trek right down to Main Street between Richmond and Laurel Streets to experience this big Caribbean Block Party. Find out more about the Main Street Caribbean Festival, part of South Carolina Carnival.

1800 Block Main Street Columbia, SC 29201
Thursday, June 6th from 7 pm – 12 am
Friday, June 7th from 11 am – 3 pm
Saturday, June 8th from 12 pm – 8 pm
Sunday, June 9th from 11 am – 3 pm

Juneteenth Festival

June 15th, 2024

It’s time to celebrate freedom, black heritage, and more at this family-friendly event. It offers many activities including food, games, live music, artistic performances, and local vendors. For more, see the Juneteenth Festival website.

421 Bush River Road, Columbia SC 29210
Ticket Price TBA

Columbia’s 9th Annual Shrimp and Grits Festival

June 22, 2024

According to the Shrimp and Grits Festival official website, there will be unlimited Shrimp & Grits, live music, and prizes! Restaurants around the Midlands will be offering their version of Shrimp & Grits and it’s your turn to find out who has the best! Also, there will be a winner in the “People’s Choice” division, and “tickets include unlimited shrimp and grits samples from participating restaurants and live music.”

Seawell’s Catering, 1125 Rosewood Drive, Columbia, SC 29201
6 pm- 9 pm
Children $25
Adults $45

Looking for 4th of July Festivals and Events? We have a whole article about that!

Celebrate the 4th of July in Columbia, SC!

Southeast Crab Festival

July 13, 2024

Obviously, this festival will include crabs, but that’s not all. It actually has all-you-can-eat blue crabs! There will also be fish and chips as well as drinks for sale. You can bring in your own toppings, but please no coolers. This event boasts being both a long-standing state tradition of outdoor seafood cooking and a family-friendly event. Tickets will be limited to reduce crowds. Get tickets online at the Southeast Crab Feast website and collect them at Will Call with ID.

Tickets starting at $17.50

Still Hungry for More?

Free fun for kids at the Sumter Iris Festival

Bonus: Sumter Iris Festival

May 23rd through the 26th, 2024

Iris Festival in Sumter, SC at Swan Lake

Don’t forget the Sumter County Iris Festival is about an hour’s drive on Memorial Day Weekend. It offers lots of FREE fun for the family, so this is one you don’t want to miss!

And, Soda City Comic Con is in August.

There are also car shows, 5ks, and more in Columbia this summer. The Kidding Around Columbia Event Page is where you can find more events.

Let us know about your favorite festivals and summer activities below!

About the Author
How does Kidding Around® bring readers high-quality and up-to-date content month after month and season after season? We have a dedicated team of writers and editors who regularly update our fabulous content to keep it current and relevant for our readers. This team combs lists of events, heads out into the community to experience new Upstate offerings, and communicates with local businesses. Many of our updated articles and event lists, like this one, reflect the contributions and hard work of multiple Kidding Around® team members.

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