What’s With All the Fests?

MS Dockville 2012

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It seems like around here, there’s new “fests” popping up every other day. We love the fest-ing on campus and around Burlington, so we thought that this week we’d break it down a bit in order to see the full range of fests.

 Food Fests!

Food fest are probably one of our favorite kinds of festivals, because it usually means LOTS of free food. No matter what your food preferences or restrictions are, there is a food festival around for each of us.


The Vermont Brewer’s festival is going on down at the Waterfront this summer, from July 17-18. This particular festival celebrates local and regional breweries, bringing in brewers from around New England to create one of the most spectacular beer gardens in the world. Although you must, of course, be 21 or older to enter the fest grounds, it certainly seems to be a wonderful time. You can find out more here.

Bagelfest / Pizzafest / Wingsfest

All of these delicious sounding festivals are hosted yearly by UVM’s very own team from the Inter-Residential Association. IRA brings local vendors right on campus to dole out free bagels, pizza, and wings every year, and then all of us tasters get to vote on our favorite. Get there early to beat the lines! Keep up with IRA’s events here.


“Cheeeeese, Gromit, cheeeese!” Vermont is certainly a foodie capital, and being a state full of dairy farms, cheese is one of our specialities. Did you know that it is a Vermont cheese that is currently the “World’s Best Cheese“? You can try them all at the Vermont Cheesemaker’s Festival, a delicious yearly event right around the corner in Shelburne. Also, if you’ve ever been interested in learning about how to make cheese, they’ve have demonstrations and workshops that you can attend during the festival! More info here.

Music Fests!


The Burlington Discover Jazz Festival takes over Burlington during the first few weeks of June, smattering the town with amazing performances from world renowned and local musicians alike. The festival becomes a truly immersive experience for the community, combining traditional sit-down performances in spaces like the Flynn Theater with many days of free and outdoor concerts. If you’re hanging around Burlington this summer, there’s no way you’ll be able to miss it!

Grand Point North Fest

Brought together by VT’s own Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, this yearly festival, occurring in the first few weeks after the fall semester resumes in September, is always a knockout. From Friday to Sunday, amazing touring acts from all across the world come to fill the evening hours with an assortment of amazing music, topped with the fabulous Grace Potter. It’s always a warm welcome back to Burlington, and a great way to spend the last of those warm late summer nights. More info here.

SpringFest & FallFest

These two are some of our absolute favorite Burlington fests, since they occur right on campus and are hosted by our lovely friends from UPB. FallFest is usually in late September and SpringFest in late April, and they both promise to bring nationally recognized headliners and fabulous local acts to our doorstep every year. So, cheap student tickets, short commute, and amazing music. You really can’t go wrong here.


Celebratory Fests!


Like SpringFest and FallFest, WinterFest is also hosted by UPB and also occurs right here on campus. Unlike them though, WinterFest actually refers to a whole WEEK of festivities, rather than just a single concert. That said, WinterFest does usually include a concert dubbed Winter Carnival, which occurs on the same night as an annual Rail Jam and Chili Cook Off. The week of events is a perfect way to try to get the best of those late-January winter blues (especially the daily free hot cocoa and coffee!)

UVM Fest

Well, technically speaking we’re actually talking about UVM’s annual Homecoming Celebrations, which happen each October, bringing back alums from around the world and welcoming parents of current students to campus. This weekend long event includes food events, music, speakers, workshops, and more. More info here.