VINTON, Va. (WFXR) — It’s time to celebrate spring and enjoy four days of fun with your friends and family as the oldest festival in Virginia’s Blue Ridge returns to Vinton!

The 67th annual Vinton Dogwood Festival is back in full bloom this year — for free — from Thursday, April 28 through Sunday, May 1.

According to organizers, the festival features a four-day carnival, the annual parade, more than craft and business 90 vendors, food, games, a Business Showcase, a concert, festival entertainment stages, an antique car show, the crowning of the Miss Vinton Dogwood Festival, a free Kids’ Zone, and the new Teen Space.

The celebration kicked off at 6 p.m. on Thursday and wraps up on Sunday with carnival ridges for all ages, as well as games and food, by Cole Shows until 6 p.m.

Here is the schedule for the Vinton Dogwood Festival:

  • Cole Shows Carnival will run all four days of the festival with free admission and $2 on-site parking at Billy Byrd Field
    • Thursday, April 28 from 6 to 10 p.m.
      • There will be a special for Thursday where you can pay one price and ride unlimited, but you need to purchase the wristband by 5 p.m.
    • Friday, April 29 from 6 to 10 p.m.
    • Saturday, April 30 from noon to 10 p.m.
    • Sunday, May 1 from 1 to 6 pm
  • Friday, April 29:
    • The Pizazz Band will perform soul, funk, beach country, and rock from 6 to 10 p.m. for the festival concert at the Vinton Farmers’ Market Stage. There will be a $5 cover charge, as well as a beverage garden and food truck. You will need to bring your own seating, but pets are not allowed.
  • Saturday, April 30:
    • “Dogwood Saturday” will take place through downtown Vinton from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., featuring a craft show with over 60 vendors; business showcase with over 30 vendors; the antique car show; two entertainment stages; plenty of free activities for kids and teens; and more.
      • The Roanoke Valley Region AACA Antique Car will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Thrasher Memorial Church parking lot, with registration starting at 9 a.m. and judging at 1 p.m. To apply, click here.
      • The dozens of Business Showcase vendors and the festival food vendors — selling barbeque, nachos, fries, hotdogs, catfish, funnel cakes, candy apples, and cotton candy — will be along Lee Avenue from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
      • The Vinton History Museum will provide history displays, free books, and gift niche from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
      • Here is the activity schedule for the Vinton Farmers’ Market Stage and parking lot:
        • William Byrd High School Jazz Band at 10 a.m.
        • Tim Martin and Brian Wheeling at 11 a.m.
        • The McFlys 80’s and 90’s band at noon and from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.
        • Defy Gravity Cheer Team at 1 p.m.
        • Kids’ Zone from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., with large inflatables, a petting zoo, crafts, games, and prizes
      • Here is the activity schedule for the Vinton Baptist Church parking lot stage:
        • Craft show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
        • Mason Creek Bluegrass Band from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
      • Here is the activity schedule for the area around Vinton Municipal Building:
        • Teen Space from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a climbing wall, “Escape Room,” game stations, and other activities
        • Presentation of the Dogwood Festival Court and the crowning of Miss Dogwood Festival Queen — a deserving William Byrd High School student — at noon before they ride in the festival parade
      • The annual Vinton Dogwood Festival Parade will start at 2:30 p.m. and follow a route from the Vinton War Memorial on Washington Avenue through downtown Vinton to Gus Nicks Boulevard. Community members of all ages will be able to enjoy watching the William Byrd High School Band, Virginia Highlands Pipe and Drum Band, Miss Kitty’s Cosmonaut Stilt Walkers, a variety of floats, walking and novelty classic vehicles, costumed characters, clowns, and more.

WFXR News is a proud media sponsor of the 67th annual Vinton Dogwood Festival.

WFXR News’ Hazelmarie Anderson stopped by the carnival site on Thursday morning to speak with the Vinton Dogwood Festival’s president, Beth Abbott, and publicity chairperson, Mary Beth Layman, as well as Chastity Barbour, the Town of Vinton’s community program director.

Later on Thursday, as the four-day festival got underway, WFXR News’ Kelsey Jean-Baptiste spoke with multiple families and organizers about the event’s return.