This Month, Cover Bands Pay Homage to the Rock & Roll Greats, Artists Take Sidewalk Chalk to a New Level, Hermit Crabs Battle for the Title, Fireworks Light Up the Oceanfront and Much More

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (June 17, 2016) – Hit your summer stride in July as Virginia Beach rolls out even more fun and festivities. Events range from artistic to adventurous, guaranteeing a great and distinct experience for everyone. Get your music fix at more than six live shows, cruise around the coastline to watch for both wildlife and Fourth of July fireworks, and experience art anywhere – from award-winning exhibitions to sidewalk chalk murals. Visitors won’t want to miss out on the nonstop action and excitement that Virginia Beach has to offer!


Virginia Beach kicks off free fireworks displays starting June 25th, igniting the night all season long. Visitors can sink down into the sand or take a stroll beside the ocean. The fireworks shows can be seen anywhere along the oceanfront boardwalk. Weekly displays are 100% free, fun and last all summer! Schedule is as follows.

  • Fourth of July | July 4 – 9:30 p.m.
  • Weekly Displays
    • July 4, 10, 13, 17, 20, 24, 27, 31 - 10:00 p.m.
    • August 3, 7, 10, 14, 17, 21, 24, - 10:00 p.m.
    • September 4, 8 – 10:00 p.m.
  • American Music Festival | September 4 – 10:30 p.m.
  • Virginia Symphony | September 8 – 9:30 p.m.

Also held at the 24th Street Park, along with the 17th and 31st Street parks, the Stars and Stripes Celebration will pay a musical tribute to Independence Day (July 4). The main stage at 24th Street will feature the Virginia Beach symphony orchestra, Symphonicity, the U.S. Fleet Forces Wind Ensemble and the U.S. Fleet Forces Four Star Edition. Bands will be cranking out everyone’s favorite hits on the stages at 17th and 31st Street. Running from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., the shows will culminate in a massive fireworks display that will send beautiful colors and patterns shooting across and reflecting on the ocean.

If you want to take a breather from the beaches, you can’t beat the annual 4th of July Firework Cruise with Rudee Tours  for a relaxing evening on the water (July 4). Climb aboard one of Rudee Tours’ roomy headboats, featuring upper and lower decks, for an ideal view of the fireworks lighting up the Virginia Beach Oceanfront! Reserve your tickets now for just $15 a pop (children under 3 are free). Boats will begin boarding at 8 p.m., taking off at 8:45 p.m. No need to worry about refreshments, as sodas, snacks, and adult beverages will be available for purchase on board! After a long day at the crowded beach or boardwalk, head out onto the water for a leisurely change of pace.

Sandstock - A Tribute to Rock & Roll, is a beach-inspired variation on “Woodstock.”  National and regional tribute artists who cover performers from Elton John to the Allman Brothers to the Grateful Dead will crank out hit after hit on two beach stages at the Virginia Beach oceanfront! All performances, which are free to the public, will be held on “dueling” stages on the beach at 24th Street, adjacent to the 24th Street Park.  Merchandise vendors will be featured in the park itself.


Bask in the nostalgia of childhood afternoons while exploring the work of local artists at the Chalk the Walk ARTsplosion at the Resort Beach (July 9). Spanning three blocks from 15th through 17th Street, the quirky competition will prompt hundreds of artists and aspiring artists to create their best four-by-four mini mural for trophies and prizes. A panel of esteemed judges from the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) will evaluate the entries on composition, creativity, use of color and adherence to theme. Anyone can register on the boardwalk at 17th Street, choosing from amateur, professional, and youth divisions.

This year, MOCA  is hosting “Turn the Page: The First Ten Years of Hi-Fructose,” a 10-year retrospective of the notable contemporary art magazine, Hi-Fructose. This one-of-a-kind exhibition (now - Dec. 31) brings the pages of the magazine to life for the first time ever in the same place. More than 51 artists will be represented, with a broad range of art forms and artists featured, including Beth Cavener, Greg Simkins, Brian McCarty, Wayne White and many more.


Taking over the beach at 24th Street, the Sandstock Tribute to Rock & Roll is sure to be a classic rock fan’s paradise (July 2-3). Cover groups will perform songs by 80s greats Bon Jovi, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Aerosmith, ZZ Top, Chicago and Fleetwood Mac on dueling stages. The Flower Power Stage and the Hippy Dippy Stage will be open and free to the public with performances from 6:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Donations will be accepted to support the Virginia Legends walk.

Enjoy music, ranging from rock to blues to Motown, delicious food and local artists’ crafts at the seventh annual “Summer Nights at Town Center” concert series. This local favorite, Ynot Wednesday, takes place every Wednesday night until Aug. 31 on the Sandler Center Outdoor Plaza. The Virginia Beach Farmers’ Market will have local farmers with their fresh fruits, vegetables and other homegrown items on the plaza. Check out the work of Virginia Beach local artists, who will set up their handcrafted items inside the Sandler Center lobby.

The Resort Beach sidewalks transform into a stage during Beach Street USA , when musicians and novelty acts perform along Atlantic Avenue during the summer and fall months (May 30 - Sept. 5). From 7:30 p.m. - 11 p.m., an eight-block corridor will transform into a magical world of its own that is part-circus, part-outdoor music festival and a complete family-friendly zone. Performers from all over the U.S. and Canada visit Virginia Beach each year for the opportunity to entertain visitors during this month-long event.


Hermit crabs are king at the annual Mid-Atlantic Hermit Crab Challenge (July 23)! Held in the sand at 30th Street, the challenge will definitely be off-the-wall fun for all ages. The coveted “Order of the Mercury Claw” trophy is up for grabs following the Crustacean 500 race! And for the more attractive crabs, the Miss Curvaceous Crustacean Beauty Pageant offers awards for creativity and beauty. With past winners like “Spider Crab,” “Beauty and the Crab” and “Pirates of the Crabibean,” the pageant has set the bar high for its contestants! Non-competitive crabs will have their own opportunities for praise as well, with other awards being given to the friendliest, biggest, shyest, most athletic, most-traveled crab and more. Registration is free!

Dolphin Discoveries Sea Adventures and Rudee Flipper (Mar. 19 - Oct. 31) offer unparalleled opportunities to experience the sights and sounds of our marine environment. Cruise the coastline in search of playful bottlenose dolphins and other wildlife, as you take in beautiful views and gorgeous sunsets. Aquatic wildlife specialists will explain the incredible dolphin behaviors and share what is being done to conserve and protect the species and its habitat. Brown pelicans, bald eagles and sea turtles are also frequently sighted along the way, so keep your eyes peeled for an unforgettable experience!

Come stay with us this summer or begin planning your adventure for later in the year! To learn more about Virginia Beach, plan a stay or request a complimentary vacation guide, contact the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau by calling 1-800-VA-BEACH or going to