Get our Insider's Guide to Downtown Knoxville delivered straight to your inbox. We promise to send you only the good stuff.

Spring Events 2024

Outdoor Around Town Spring

You're in store for lots of festivals and events in Downtown Knoxville, Tennessee this spring. Invite your family and friends to enjoy a variety of good times, from worldwide music events and international street fairs to more intimate gatherings and exciting adventures. Scroll on to see what awaits you in Spring 2024!


🐶 Mardi Growl Pet Parade & Festival | March 2

Register your pet or join thousands of spectators along the route for the famous Mardi Growl Pet Parade. The fan-favorite parade begins in the Old City on Saturday, March 2 at 11am and makes its way to World's Fair Park. Following the parade, the fun continues with a dog-gone fun festival of pet loving-vendors, food trucks, live music, games and more.

☘️ St. Patrick's Parade | March 16

Let's celebrate St. Patrick's Day in style! Join us for a Parade on Saturday, March 16 at 1pm on Gay Street. Tennessee-native and comedian, Josh Mancuso will be the Grand Marshal. Fill the sidewalks of Gay Street, or grab some food on a surrounding patio, and watch the parade go by!

🥳 Family Day at KMA | March 16

It's going to be a fun-filled day of family entertainment at Knoxville Museum of Art on Saturday, March 16 from 11am-3pm. The biannual Family Day features food, live music, and free, hands-on art activities. Plus an opportunity to check out permanent collections and visiting exhibitions. Admission to the KMA—and to this event—is free.

🇮🇪 Shamrock Fest | March 17

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day at Knox Shamrock Fest™! The family-friendly event at World's Fair Park from 11am-5pm includes live Irish music, dancing, inflatables, cultural events, food, Irish whiskey and more. Plus the Lucky Kidney Run benefitting East Tennessee Kidney Foundation at 11am. Join families, runners, and festival goers for an afternoon of celebrating all things St. Patty's Day.

🎶 Big Ears Festival | March 21-24

Big Ears Festival brings extraordinary performances and arts experiences to Knoxville, Tennessee, connecting more than 40,000 locals and visitors of all ages to incredible performances at a variety of venues, from big to small! The New York Times calls it, "One of the world's greatest music bashes!" And it's right here in our backyard, March 21—24.

🎨 Make. Art. Music. | March 21-24

Dozens of Downtown businesses will be hosting free events showcasing local artists, makers, and musicians throughout Big Ears' weekend to add to the festival experience. Enjoy art exhibitions, demonstrations, and music performances at a variety of venues. Plus experience dozens of free Big Ears events including author talks, concerts, and pop-up events. No pass needed!

✨ Chalk Walk | April 6

A beloved event every year, this year's Chalk Walk is sure to keep the fun going! The street painting festival turns Market Square's sidewalks into a seemingly infinite canvas for the region’s most talented professional and student artists. Thousands of art lovers head Downtown each year to experience this live art competition in Market Square.

🏃 Knoxville Marathon | April 7

Thousands of runners race through the streets of Downtown Knoxville for the Knoxville Marathon, Half Marathon, Relay Races, Kids Fun Run, and more. Even if you're not participating, it's fun to watch. Grab a patio on Gay Street and cheer the racers on to victory!

🌼 Old City Market | starts April 14

Old City Market transforms historic Jackson Ave into a curated, outdoor market with beautiful handmade gifts, local gourmet goods, and more. Markets take place the second Sunday of every month with opening day on April 14 from 11am to 4pm. Plus a special night market on May 23. What a way to kick-off spring!

🎭 Rossini Festival | April 20-21

Double the fun with two days of Rossini! The Rossini Festival is one of East Tennessee’s most popular events, combining a vibrant International Street Fair with world class opera performances and art exhibitions...all for FREE! Witness non-stop entertainment on outdoor stages showcasing opera, classical, jazz, gospel, and ethnic music; ballet, modern, and ethnic dance. Taste street food from many vendors and peruse more than 75 artisan booths. See y'all April 20-21!

🌸 Dogwood Arts Festival | April 26-28

The famous Dogwood Arts Festival is fun for the entire family! It's a weekend full of regional artists selling unique creations including mixed media, pottery, painting, photography, glass, jewelry, and sculpture. Held on the World’s Fair Park's Performance Lawn, you'll find over 100 fine art vendors, live music, entertainment, children's activities, food and beverage vendors, and more.

🥙 Arab Fest | April 27

Join us for a celebration of Middle Eastern food, dance, fashion, music, merchandise, and an overall good time at Arab Fest in Downtown Knoxville's Market Square. Happening April 27!

🍅 Market Square Farmers' Market | starts May 1

Kick off the 21st season of the Market Square Farmers' Market on Wednesday, May 1. Everything is grown locally or made by a vendor in the East Tennessee region! Find vegetables, fruit, eggs, honey, herbs, pasture-raised meats, breads, baked goods, salsas, coffee, artisan crafts, and much more. Every Wednesday and Saturday, May through November, rain or shine!

🎷 Concerts on the Square | starts May 7

Spend relaxing evenings in the heart of Downtown Knoxville enjoying Concerts on the Square. The series kicks off on May 7 with jazz concerts every Tuesday at 7pm through June 25. Plus, May-September enjoy concerts on the 3rd Thursday of the month. Bring a blanket or lawn chair, grab dinner on a Market Square patio, and listen to talented musicians fill the Square! Best of all: it's free!

🎤 Southern Skies Music & Whiskey Festival | May 11

Southern Skies, curated by hometown favorites The Dirty Guv’nahs, has quickly become a can't-miss spring event. NEW this year: they've collaborated with the TN Distillers Guild to bring the top distilleries from across the state to the music fest. Let's sing and dance the day away!

📚 Children's Festival of Reading | May 18

Kick off summer reading with a full day of music, storytelling, arts, crafts, science exploration, food, and fun designed for kids—but a unique experience for all. The Children’s Festival of Reading is Saturday, May 18 at World's Fair Park from 10am–3pm. This FREE event boasts music and storytelling tents, costumed storybook characters, children's dance, and more!

🌟 Knoxville's Largest Kids' Party | June 1

Join the non-stop fun with exciting kids activities, appearances by favorite princesses and superheroes, 80-foot obstacle course, water slide, and so much more at Knoxville's Largest Kids' Party. Portion of the proceeds will benefit children in our community.

🦋 Rhinestone Fest | June 7-8

A weekend full of celebrating Dolly Parton, our queen of East Tennessee! The annual Dolly-themed festival encompasses artists, musicians, and do-gooders that Dolly has inspired throughout her rhinestone-studded career. Rhinestone Fest will take place on June 7-8 at various locations in and around the Old City, including the Rhinestone Market on June 8 on Jackson Ave. A family-friendly and free event! 

Photo Credit: Jordan Campbell

Stay tuned for more!

Check the calendar for more events and festivals coming to Downtown Knox throughout the spring, summer, and fall!