Outdoor Music Festivals In and Around Seattle

From Sasquatch to Bumbershoot, make summer even sweeter with a wealth of outdoor music festivals
Brangien Davis  |   May 2014   |  FROM THE PRINT EDITION
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Loungers at last year’s Sasquatch music festival at the Gorge

This was the year Sasquatch grew a bit too big for its britches. After adding a second full weekend of live shows to the wildly popular music fest at the Gorge Amphitheatre, event promoters had to cancel the bonus round due to weak sales. But never fear, the Northwest offers plenty of ways to get your groove on outdoors. Though slightly humbled, the Sasquatch (sasquatchfestival.com) show goes on over Memorial Day weekend (May 23–25), and includes local indie darlings The Lonely Forest, Damien Jurado and Tacocat. That same weekend, Seattle Center hosts Northwest Folklife (nwfolklife.org), where this year’s cultural emphasis is the music and dancing of India. The annual Fremont Fair (fremontfair.com) amps up its tuneful offerings June 20–22, adding a Solstice Concert Series, featuring Campfire OK, Built to Spill and Blue Scholars. July 24–26, pitch a tent in Carnation’s Tolt-MacDonald Park, where beloved Seattle bands including The Physics, Tea Cozies and Smokey Brights, play with many others at the Timber! Outdoor Music Festival (timbermusicfest.com). And expect tickets for the hipster-meets-hippie Doe Bay Fest, August 7–11 on Orcas Island (doebayfest.com), to once again sell out well before the bands are even announced. Meanwhile, the grand dame of local music fests, Bumbershoot (bumbershoot.org), is back on Labor Day weekend (August 30–September 1), promising bands both huge and emerging (lineup announced May 8), as well as a return to Memorial Stadium for mainstage performances. Phew! We’re sunburned just thinking about it.