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10 Things Happening this Summer You Don’t Want to Miss

A look at summer events #WhereIowaStarted.

Mark your calendars for these 10 events taking place in Dubuque.

Kick Off to Summer

Like the name says, this event always feels like the first official hurrah of the season. Live music, cold drinks, and great food signals the start of summer events. This year’s season opener takes place May 28 at the Dubuque County Fairgrounds.

Fourth of July Fireworks

Fourth of July

The national holiday is always highly anticipated #WhereIowaStarted with an abundance of area events. From the Fireworks & Airshow Spectacular held on the banks on the Mississippi River at A.Y. McDonald Park July 3rd to the area celebrations like Bellevue Heritage Days July 3 - 4 just 25 miles south of Dubuque.

Night Market

Market to Market

Nothing says summer’s here like the sights, sounds, and tastes of a fresh market. Stroll along and discover locally grown produce, hand crafted goods, live music, and more. Dubuque’s longest running Farmers’ Market takes place Saturdays from 7 am to noon and Millwork Night Market is the second Thursday of the month from 5 to 8 pm.

Return of Live Music

Dubuque’s live music scene is always overflowing with options. From national acts at Five Flags to patio performances at Stone Cliff Winery there are so many things happening in between. See the calendar of events.

Food Truck Friday

Food Truck Friday

Walk, bike, or drive to Washington Park where food trucks will line the streets ready to celebrate the end of the week with you. This series of events takes place May - September. See the full schedule!

Beyond the Game

The Dubuque area made national headlines when MLB announced a regular season game would be held at the famous Field of Dreams Movie Site. After 2020’s cancellation due to COVID-19, the game is back on August 12 and the Dyersville community and Dubuque area is ready to welcome guests for a one-of-a-kind Iowa baseball experience at the Beyond the Game Festival August 11 - 12.

River Museum

Exhibits at Smithsonian Affiliated Museums

Did you know Dubuque is home to two Smithsonian affiliated museums? First up is the Dubuque Museum of Art which is hosting the ‘I Am A Man Mural Exhibition’ throughout the summer as well as other exhibits featuring high caliber artists. Traveling with kids? Check out the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (and who are we kidding…us big kids like it too!) This summer they’ve got the ‘Splash and Bubbles: Dive in, Lend a Fin!’ experience from Jim Henson. Included in all general admission tickets, this exhibit is based on the popular PBS Kids Show Splash and Bubbles.

Dubuque County Fair

Summer isn’t summer without at least one trip to a county fair. From the tasty treats and mainstage entertainment, to a carnival and fair competitions. The fair is a must see and kicks off July 27 through August 1.

boy laughing arboretum dubuque

Music in the Gardens

The Dubuque Arboretum & Botanical Gardens is always a magical place to visit but throw in live music radiating from the Packard Pavilion and you’ve got a recipe for a on-of-a-kind experience. Held Sundays at 6:30 pm through June, July, and August, experience the wide array of musical entertainment beneath the stars and among the gardens.

Summer’s Last Blast

Just like the kickoff, the Last Blast signifies the end of a summer season packed with memory making events. Stop out at Q Casino September 3-4 for live music, cold drinks, and a send off to the summer season.