Tune in to the Arts at Lancaster Festival

During the last week of July, downtown Lancaster, Ohio, is taken over with a massive musical celebration. The Lancaster Festival has been an annual tradition since 1985 when the then Columbus Symphony Orchestra conductor brought together the community for eight days of musical performances and arts events. Today, the festival features numerous performers across multiple musical genres, regional artists’ work on display throughout the week in 40 local businesses, and a number of family-friendly activities.

On Monday morning, families with young kids can swing by Knights of Columbus Hall at 10:30 a.m. for a performance by Cincinnati’s Madcap Puppets, and parents can enjoy the evening tribute concert to Frank Sinatra by The Dwight Lenox Trio at The Lexington. On Tuesday, a string quartet will play at 1 p.m. at the Olivedale Park Senior Center, followed by more classical music with a performance of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons by Fresno Philharmonic Orchestra concertmaster Stephanie Sant’Ambrogio and the Lancaster Festival Orchestra.

Wednesday morning at 10:30 a.m. features a special children’s performance by touring guitarist Mark Dvorak, followed by 70s cover band group Agent 99 at the Bandstand and a Police tribute band at 7:30 p.m. at Wendel Concert Stage. Thursday afternoon, The Amazing Portable Circus will be in town to entertain with their death-defying acts, and the night will wrap with a family-friendly Magical Music of Disney concert at 7 p.m. at Fairfield Christian Church. On Friday, visitors can try their hands at landscape painting with an outdoor class at the Decorative Arts Center at 10 a.m., after which Celtic singing group The Ladies of Longford will take over the Bandstand at 12:15 p.m. The highlight of the day is a concert by Michael Crenshaw, a singer-songwriter who has portrayed John Lennon in Beatlemania and Buddy Holly in La Bamba, with his 8 p.m. concert that will be opened by Columbus-based band Angela Perley & the Howlin’ Moons.

Finally, the festivities will wrap up on Saturday with an 8:30 a.m. 5K race and performances by local musical groups—from the Lancaster Summer Youth Band to the Reynoldsburg Community Band—throughout the day. For the grand finale, the Lancaster Festival Orchestra will perform a final concert alongside southern rock and folk group Blues Travelers. Attendees can view a full schedule of events; ticket prices for individual performances vary. Lancaster Festival, 117 West Wheeling Street, Lancaster, (740) 687-4808

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