Spend some time in Cumberland Valley, and you may notice that it echoes with sound. From the South Mountain to the Blue Mountain, you will catch every musical rendering from classical orchestra to bluegrass and most genres in between.
Music with a View
Looking for a one-of-a-kind music experience? Check out the Valley's outdoor venues. At King's Gap Environmental Education Center, you can enjoy monthly Music on the Mountain concerts during the warmer months. These take place at the top of a winding four-mile-long road in front of the Mansion. For a variety of musical acts, head to the amphitheater in Thornwald Park, just outside downtown Carlisle. The Summer Artist Series takes place most Sundays from June through August. Or, hop on a Blues Cruise, Jazz Cruise, or Party Cruise on the Pride of the Susquehanna to enjoy music while on the water. Other notable outdoor concerts and music series in 2023 include Summer Concerts on the Square in Downtown Mechanicsburg, the Sunset Music & Movie Series at Fort Hunter Mansion in Harrisburg, Music at the Mill at Willow Mill Park in Mechanicsburg, and the Classic Rock Festival at Deer Run Camping in Gardners.
There are a variety of options to enjoy a classic concert experience in Cumberland Valley's theaters and performing arts venues. The H. Ric Luhrs Performing Arts Center features a diverse range of performances throughout the year, including the Festival Series, which showcases three symphony concerts. The Carlisle Theatre, with its Art Deco style, has been entertaining audiences since 1939 and offers a variety of musical acts. The Playhouse at Allenberry has been delighting visitors since 1949 and presents Broadway productions and musical performances. Meanwhile, at the Little Theater of Mechanicsburg and Oyster Mill Playhouse, visitors can witness local community members showcase their unique and quirky musical talents. And the recently renovated West Shore Theatre in downtown New Cumberland is a great place to catch small-scale theatrical and musical performances as well as concerts.
Festivals and Events
The Valley boasts a plethora of annual festivals and events that showcase live music performances. During summer, the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra holds a series of free concerts around the Fourth of July, including shows at Dickinson College and Lemoyne's Negley Park. Moreover, Dickinson College hosts the Bluegrass on the Grass Festival every year, which has become a summer tradition for over two decades. Attendees of the Appalachian Trail Music Festival in Boiling Springs can enjoy live music while relishing the picturesque Children's Lake. For those who love Christian music, Uprise Fest is a must-see outdoor event held in mid-September, offering activities, food, merchandise, and more.
If you're looking for live music throughout the year, many restaurants, breweries, and wineries feature performances, including the Saturdays at the Barn Summer Music Series, a new event at The Barn at Creek's Bend, adjacent to Carlisle Sports Emporium. Additionally, be sure to check out local libraries such as Bosler in Carlisle and Fredricksen in Camp Hill, which offer free indoor and outdoor concerts in various musical styles.
With so many exceptional live music options available, it might be challenging to decide where to go first. Visit the Cumberland Valley event calendar and sort by live music & concerts to discover what's playing this weekend.