Summer events in the Baltimore area: What’s returning, what’s canceled and what’s still up in the air

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As coronavirus cases surged across Maryland and the world, festivals, conventions and local pools were shuttered.

With more than 44% of Marylanders vaccinated, many events that were canceled last year are planned to run this summer.


While many are still settling on exact dates and what precautions will be in place, here’s what you need to know:

From left, Yamour Smith, 8, Jayla Briggs, 10, Payton Hurt, 8, and Deannah Smith, 9, leap into the Ambrose Kennedy public pool on Harford Avenue and Eager Street in 2019.


Pools in Baltimore City will offer free admission this summer with an online reservation process from May 29 to Sept. 6. Each reservation will be for 90 minutes with 30-minute breaks in between to allow the pool to be cleaned. Pool-goers will have their temperatures checked and will be required to wear masks unless the individual is in the water. No chairs will be provided, but guests can bring their own.

Flash mob dancing at Artscape in 2019.


Artscape, the popular Baltimore summertime art and music festival, was canceled in early May for the second straight summer due to continuing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.

Traditional citywide celebrations are expected to return in the summer of 2022.

Madisyn Hill explores on Light City's opening night in 2019 in Baltimore.

Light City/Baltimore Book Festival

Baltimore Book Festival and Light City were supposed to be held in 2021, but no date has been announced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, which puts on both events. Light City, which brings light art, installations, and other arts and culture programming to neighborhoods across the city, has been postponed until 2022.

Lil' Black, host/MC for AFRAM, leaves the stage to dance the Cupid Shuffle with member of the audience at Druid Hill Park in 2019.

Baltimore AFRAM Festival

The weeklong festival will be held as a hybrid experience from Monday, Aug. 15, to Sunday, Aug. 21.

The main festival will be held virtually Aug. 20 and 21.

Druid Hill Park will act as the festival’s hub, with both limited in-person and digital activities occurring in various landmark locations throughout the city. Details are expected to be forthcoming.

Guests watch fireworks from the pool at the Four Seasons during Baltimore's Fourth of July festivities in 2019.

Fourth of July Fireworks

Baltimore City

Fireworks are canceled in the city due to the coronavirus.



Fireworks will be held, weather permitting, at the Columbia Lakefront. The show is expected to start around 9:20 p.m. and will last a little over 20 minutes. Those who are not vaccinated should plan to wear a mask. There will be no bands or food trucks present.


A full day of events from horseshoe pitching and hay house tours and a Fourth of July parade will be held. Fireworks will be launched from Rockfield Park around 9:30 p.m. Spectators may watch from any permitted area in or around the Town of Bel Air.

Anne Arundel

The county is tentatively planning a Fourth of July celebration, though no plans have been confirmed.


Baltimore County

The Catonsville 4th of July Committee has tentatively scheduled the 75th Anniversary of the Catonsville Parade and Fireworks for July 3. The committee is awaiting approval of its permits.

Quality Snowballs in Hampden

The local favorite snowball stand is open for the season. Be sure to grab a mask, as the mandate is still active in Baltimore City.

The stand is open Monday through Friday from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 9 p.m.

Baltimore's Best Hon 2018 finalist Amber Nelson, left, shows her talent as other finalists cheer her on during the 25th annual Hon Fest in Hampden.


On its website, the festival says it will be virtual, though no details are listed.

Miko Branch, co-founder of Miss Jessie's, a national brand of hair care products, at the Baltimore Natural Hair Care Expo in 2015.

Natural Hair Care Expo

The expo is going to be held June 5 and 6 at the Doubletree by Hilton. 1726 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville.

Thousands march during the 2019 Baltimore Pride Parade down Charles Street.

Baltimore Pride Virtual Parade

Baltimore Pride is going to be held June 13-20.

Weekend Watch


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Throughout the week there will both be in-person events like a fashion show and a movie night and also virtual events like the parade.

Summer Solstice Faerie Festival

The festival, which recently relocated to Marshy Point Nature Center in Baltimore County from Glen Rock, Pennsylvania, is canceled due to the coronavirus, but organizers plan to hold it in 2022.

Andrew Morgan, Props intern for the Baltimore Center Stage's 18/19 season, is dressed as Spiderman in the Homecoming protosuit.

Baltimore Comic Con

The event is returning to Baltimore Oct. 22-24 at the Baltimore Convention Center.

Organizers say they will be working with the convention center and the city to implement best practices to keep attendees safe.

The Baltimore Wine and Food Festival at Rash Field in 2016.

Baltimore Wine and Food Festival

The festival will be held Aug. 7 at the Harbor Point Central Plaza in the Inner Harbor from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. No details regarding social distancing are listed on the organizer’s web site. 1310 Point St., Baltimore, MD

Baltimore Jazz Festival

The jazz festival will be held Aug. 28 and 29 at the Hilton in the Inner Harbor. No details regarding social distancing are listed on the organizer’s web site. 401 W. Pratt St., Baltimore, MD.

Music City Maryland Festival

With four stages and more than 30 bands spread out throughout downtown Catonsville on Frederick Road, Music City Maryland will be held Aug. 28 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. The event is free and will be held rain or shine. No details regarding social distancing are listed on the organizer’s web site.