It’s officially summer, so while we’re sad to see the temperature rise around Houston, we’re happy to say goodbye to the rainy days of April and hello to some of our favorite festivals.  Whether you’re in the mood to stroll through a cook-off, hear some live music or catch a fireworks show, we’ve got the perfect daytrip to help beat the summer heat.

May 3 – May 5

League City Music Festival & BBQ Cookoff (May 3-5)

The fun starts early with this festival in Bay Area Houston! On Thursday, May 3rd families can enjoy the Lion’s Den Public BBQ Tent and carnival rides for kids from 6 – 10 p.m., but the real fun starts on Friday, May 4th when “Bag of Donuts” opens for Sammy Kershaw who takes the stage at 10 p.m.

Round out the fun on Saturday night when the music continues. Mike and the Moonpies perform at 6 p.m. with Shinyribs following at 8 p.m. and national recording artists Maddie & Tae closing out at 10 p.m. 

Keels & Wheels Concours D’Elegance (May 4-5)

With over 200 classic cars including Ferraris, Pierce Arrow, Porsche and Super Cars and over 100 classic wooden boats on show from all over the country, this festival is perfect for speed and sleek design enthusiasts. Check it out for yourself May 4th and 5th and get your tickets here.

May 18 - 20

31st Annual General Sam Houston Folk Festival (May 18-20)

Huntsville Folk Festival

Step back in time to the 1800s and enjoy folklife demonstrations, children's activities, cultural displays, arts and crafts and more. The 31st Annual General Sam Houston Folk Festival is a local favorite and this year, attendees get the added bonus of the 19th Annual Texas State Knife and Tomahawk Championship being held on the North end of the museum grounds.

Honky Tonk Chili Challenge in Tomball (May 19)

Tomball’s Honky Tonk Chili Challenge will stir up some hot picks and chili peppers on May 19th as the 7th annual festival fills the downtown depot plaza with chili cooks from across southeast Texas competing in this CASI sanctioned Chili Challenge. If you didn’t know – that’s some serious clout!

Come dig in to some of the best chili in Texas while you groove to old-style honky tonk tunes from the days of Patsy Cline and Hank Williams will be performed throughout the afternoon by Jeff Woolsey & the Dancehall Kings, Palomino Moon, and the Country All-Stars. Gates open at 11 a.m. and parking and admission are free!

July 3 – 4

Houston Symphony presents Star-Spangled Salute (July 3)

This free Independence Eve spectacular is a tradition in The Woodlands, where the show has been hosted for 28 years on July 3rd at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion. With a selection of patriotic favorites, tickets are not required for this spectacular patriotic display. Learn more about the show here.

Baytown’s Independence Day Celebration (July 3-4th)

This year, Baytown’s festival kicks off with a bang on Tuesday, July 3rd at Bicentennial Park with Dennis Deyoung bringing the music of Styx. Day 2’s celebration of freedom on July 4th will welcome country music singer Roger Creager and George Strait tribute artist Brent Brunson to the stage.

Come prepared to shop row after row of vendor booths, feast from a large assortment of food trucks, enjoy the patriotic parade on the 4th, and let your kids run wild in the festival’s kid play zone!  The festival will come to an explosive conclusion at 9:30 p.m. when a special guest DJ will play patriotic tune after tune as the fireworks burst and shimmer over the park in an impressive show of lights.  Learn more here.