Even though Washingtonians are once again encouraged to wear masks indoors to help curb the delta variant, there's still an abundance of awesome events happening this month that you can (and should) get tickets for. Instead of listing every one of them (check back here every Monday for new roundups of the best things to do!), we've compiled August's greatest hits, from Seattle Opera's outdoor production of Die Walküre to the hybrid Seattle Taiwanese American Film Festival, from The Showbox's reopening concert with Ben Gibbard and David Bazan to Brandi Carlile with Sheryl Crow and Yola, and from the Dick's Drive-In Summer Series to the revived Silent Reading Party at Hotel Sorrento. See them below, and check out our complete ever-evolving guides to live music and in-person things to do for more options.
Alki Beach Pride
Most Pride events take place in June, but there’s one community celebration that’s found its own place later in the summer, and it happens to be the only Pride event in Washington that takes place on a beach. Now in its eighth year, Alki Beach Pride offers plenty of sandy waterfronts to pitch a canopy or beach umbrella. There are fire pits, contests and prizes, a car parade and skate/bike/board "Roll OUT," and partnerships with over 23 bars and restaurants all along Alki Avenue and into White Center. For those looking for a Pride free of corporate sponsorship and (mostly) without cops, that's just how Alki's done it for over eight years. MARK VAN STREEFKERK
Alki Beach, West Seattle (August 14-15)
Duwamish River Festival
Learn about the Duwamish River and how to protect it at this Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition-sponsored event. There will also be interactive booths, boat tours, live music, entertainment, and free food.
South Park Plaza, South Park (Sat Aug 7)
The Evergreen State Fair - Back in the Saddle Again!
Monroe's summer festival will once again bring carnival games and rides, Native dancers, live music, monster trucks, duck races, and more.
Evergreen State Fairgrounds, Monroe (Aug 26-Sept 6)
In the Spirit Arts Market & Northwest Native Festival
For thousands of years, the Pacific Northwest has been home to dozens of indigenous tribes and nations whose distinctive cultural traditions have persisted despite centuries of suppression. This year, the Tacoma Art Museum will produce this free, family-friendly community festival featuring singing, dancing, storytelling, food, a Native arts market, carving and drum-making demonstrations, and a Native designer fashion show. It's a great opportunity to directly support indigenous artists and come face-to-face with people carrying forward the ancient creative and spiritual traditions of the land we live on.
Tacoma Art Museum (Sat Aug 7)
Neighborhood Night Out
Cross the bridge onto the island of West Seattle for live music on the streets, restaurant specials, free coozies, and more.
West Seattle Junction (Tues Aug 3)
Par-tee in the Park
Who says mini-golf courses can't be considered fine art? Certainly not the Seattle Art Museum, whose outdoor fundraiser will star a nine-hole putt-putt rig designed by local artists. Tickets also get you hearty hors d’oeuvres, locally sourced booze (including wine by Tranche Cellars, hard seltzer by San Juan Seltzer, and amaro by Fast Penny Spirits), and live music by Amateur Hour.
Olympic Sculpture Park, Belltown (Sat Aug 21)
It's sunflower harvest season, baby! Trek over to Buckley to pluck one of the multi-colored, broad-brimmed beauties from Maris Farms' five-acre plot. Admission includes one sunflower of your choosing, photo ops, and access to a chalk truck, jump pillow, zip lines, something called a gaga ball, human foosball, a low ropes course, a barnyard ball zone, and another curious contraption called a roller bowler.
Maris Farms, Buckley (Aug 4-Sept 19)
Umoja Day of Unity Parade & March
The organizers of Umoja Fest, an annual celebration of African diaspora culture in the Northwest, will honor the current swell of Black Lives Matter activism and visibility with a march and parade from the Central District to Jimi Hendrix Park. They promise drill and dance teams, speakers, kids' activities, and more all-ages fun.
23rd & Union, Central District (Sat Aug 7)
Washington Midsommar Renaissance Faire
The time-warped village of Merriwick (otherwise known as Kelley Farms) is back for another season of Renaissance-era merriment spread over three themed weekends, kicking off with "Barbarians at the Gates," wherein visitors will get to safely bear witness to an invasion of pirates and the Great Horde while dining on turkey legs and drinking mead out of a horn. The first weekend will also include a Viking-themed party (complete with drum circle) with Jon Oppegaard & Tribe from Oppegaard Meadery, followed by a steampunk party. The following weekend takes on a gentler vibe with "Myths & Magic," a celebration of all things whimsical and fairy-like. Rounding things out this year is "Wandering Thru Time," a Comic Con-esque affair that encourages costumes from all eras and realms.
Kelley Farms, Bonney Lake (Aug 7-22)
BECU Drive-in Movies at Marymoor Park
For the last 17 years or so, Marymoor Park has been one of Seattle's hottest destinations for outdoor movie viewing. While you won't be able to set up on the grass this year, BECU will keep the tradition going by shifting to a drive-in model for the second year, screening classic flicks all summer long. Food trucks will be onsite, too.
Marymoor Park, Redmond (through Aug 26)
Black Summer Camp
Join Sankofa Film Society every Saturday for outdoor screenings of movies centering the Black American experience, including Jackie Brown and The Last Black Man in San Francisco. “Some of these films are campy, some of these films are silly, some of these films pack a punch, but all of these films are about the Black experience,” writes Sankofa co-founder Karen Toering. “We just picked the films we love. The films we know that afterwards—or even during—folks will want to talk about.” They have a popcorn machine, but viewers are welcome to bring takeout from nearby restaurants.
El Centro de la Raza, Beacon Hill (through Oct 30)
Scarecrow Video will once again partner with the Phinney Neighborhood Association, UHeights, and Companis for an outdoor movie series every Thursday and Saturday in August. Snag tickets for adult and family-friendly flicks alike, like Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse and Moonlight.
Phinney Center, Phinney (Aug 5-28)
Magic Scissors: Outdoor Silent Movie Nights at Chophouse Row
Goethe Pop Up presents two nights of stop-motion shorts made between 1926 to 1955 by German silhouette animation pioneer Lotte Reiniger, making excellent use of the dreamy Chophouse Row courtyard. Live scoring will add to the fairy tale ambiance.
Chophouse Row, Capitol Hill (Aug 13-14)
Movies at the Mural
Stretch out on the lawn and enjoy new and old film favorites like The Princess Bride (Sat July 31), The Farewell (Fri Aug 6), Strictly Ballroom (Sat Aug 7), and more.
Mural Amphitheatre, Seattle Center (through Aug 28)
Movies at Peddler
Kids, adults, and dogs alike are invited to the Ballard brewery every Thursday night for outdoor screenings of classic movies like The Goonies and 10 Things I Hate About You.
Peddler Brewing Company, Ballard (through Aug 26)
Seattle Taiwanese American Film Festival
Kicking off with an in-person screening of Dear Tenant and commencing on the digital screen, this hybrid film festival will present short and feature films (plus Q&As) by Taiwanese American directors, accompanied by snacks and drinks inspired by the country's cuisine.
Vasa Park Resort, Bellevue (Fri Aug 13); online (Aug 14-22)
FOOD & DRINK
Bacon Eggs & Kegs
This festival revolving around the combination of savory, gut-busting breakfast foods and heady booze promises concoctions like waffle sandwiches, fried avocado bacon Benedicts, and beer-batter flapjacks. Day drinking is encouraged with more than 80 brews from 40 breweries and cideries, plus mimosas, boozy root-beer floats, Irish coffee, and a 30-foot Bloody Mary bar with dozens upon dozens of toppings (including tater tots, mozzarella sticks, jalapeño poppers, veggies, herbs, pickles, puffed Cheetos, bacon, and pork rinds). You’re probably going to want to clear your schedule for that requisite post-brunch nap.
Lumen Field Events Center, Sodo (Aug 14-15)
Enjoy an all-day lineup of food-centric festivities, including a farmers market, local food vendors, and live music by Watchhouse (formerly Mandolin Orange), Caspar Babypants, Sundae & Mr. Goessl, Ben Hunter, Tekla Waterfield with Jeff Fielder, Jimmy James (The True Loves) with Tiffany Wilson, and Country Dave.
Marymoor Park, Redmond (Sat Aug 21)
CID Food Walk Series: July & August
Stroll through Chinatown-International District and enjoy $2-$8 treats and other special deals from 40 beloved businesses from all over the neighborhood, including sari sari compost cookies and "piña co-lattes" from Hood Famous Cafe + Bar, veggie noodles and dumplings from Szechuan Noodle Bowl, iced coffee and pandan waffles from Phin, rock oolong or jasmine green milk tea with boba from Young Tea, mochi donuts from Dochi, and more. On July 31, you can stop by a tent in Hing Hay Park to grab a menu of all the specials, browse food and retail items, and give the prize wheel a spin for a chance to win gift cards, certificates, and coupons to neighboring C-ID businesses. Various locations, Seattle Chinatown-International District (through Aug 28)
Dick's Food Truck Pop-Up with A Cook Named Matt
The beloved local fast-food favorite Dick's Drive-In will join forces with the Vietnamese coffee shop Hello Em and the TikTok star A Chef Named Matt to present a collaborative menu with "Viet-poutine fries" and Pho Bac pate gravy. $55 of each purchase will be donated to Friends of Little Saigon to help invest in Chinatown-International District's Little Saigon community.
Hello Em, Chinatown-International District (Tues Aug 10)
Kirkland Summerfest: Beach Party
Kirkland's three-day music and arts festival highlights local music talent and also brings a street market, the Sales & Ales beer festival, and the Sip Kirkland Washington Wine & Beer Festival.
Marina Park, Kirkland (through Aug 1)
Li'l Woody's Seafood Month
In collaboration with Seattle Met, the local burger joint Li'l Woody's is presenting a series of weekly specials created by some of the city's rising culinary luminaries, each made with the bounty of the sea in mind. The lineup includes chef Seth Warfield's "Taylor Shellfish Smoked Oyster Dip Burger" (Taylor Shellfish smoked oyster dip, Tim’s Cascade potato chips, dill pickle, Tillamook smoked cheddar, Hills bacon, Painted Hill grass-fed beef, and mayo on a Li'l Woody’s bun) from August 3-9; Birch Basket Catering chef Hillel Echo-Hawk's "What the Halibut Burger" (panko-crusted halibut, charred yellow corn aioli, sliced tomato, pickled onion, and dandelion greens on a Li'l Woody’s bun) from August 10-16; Local Tide chef Victor Steinbrueck's "Li'l Local Burger" (rockfish, pork and shrimp patty with sweet mayo, chili garlic oil, and cabbage slaw with sesame vinaigrette on a Li'l Woody’s bun) from August 17-23, and chef Brian Miyamoto's “Li'l Woody’s Fillet-O-Fish” (beer-battered Alaskan Pollock, "pickle-y" tartar sauce, shredded lettuce, and American cheese on a Li'l Woody’s bun) from August 24-30.
Various locations (Aug 3-30)
Poverty Bay Brews & Blues Festival 2021
Because beer and blues are perfect bedfellows, spend a day alongside folksy musicians like the CD Woodbury Trio and Stacy Jones Band while you sip offerings from local breweries.
Des Moines Beach Park, Des Moines (Sat Aug 28)
Whiskey & Wildbites
Wander through the zoo as you enjoy "a mix of global and local expressions" in the way of gourmet offerings from four different chefs and sip whiskey provided by four different distilleries.
Woodland Park Zoo, Phinney (Aug 5-26)
Atmosphere and Cypress Hill
Alternative hip-hop stalwarts Atmosphere and Cypress Hill will share the stage on this Redmond tour stop, right after an opening set from mashup pioneer Z-Trip.
Marymoor Park, Redmond (Sat Aug 22)
Ben Gibbard and David Bazan
If you spent the first few weeks of Seattle's initial lockdown tuning in to Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard's daily livestreamed performances, you'll be happy to learn that he'll be churning out soft indie gems at The Showbox's grand reopening concert. Pedro the Lion's David Bazan will warm up the stage.
The Showbox, Downtown (Fri Aug 20)
William Michael Albert Broad, aka Billy Idol, is 63 years old, but you better believe that sneer hasn’t aged a bit. Coming up in the original English punk scene, Idol was a founding member of Generation X—the first band to play the iconic venue the Roxy (it was also their first show) and one of the first punk bands to play on the BBC’s Top of the Pops. I always admired that Idol and co.’s interpretation of the P-word was less militant and political than was fashionable at the time, and that they were unapologetically more into big-time rock ’n’ roll than their Beatles-and-Stones-dissing peers. This also factors into Idol’s solo career and penchant for showmanship, which lean toward something I think of as “Punk: The Musical.” Yes, it’s leather pants and cross earrings, but it’s also elaborate lights, costume changes, and well-done makeup. EMILY NOKES
Tulalip Resort Casino, Tulalip (Sun Aug 15)
Austin soul group Black Pumas, led by Grammy-winning guitarist Adrian Quesada, is described as "Wu-Tang Clan meets James Brown" by KCRW. If that's in your wheelhouse, get yourself to the duo's Seattle tour stop.
Paramount Theatre, Downtown (Aug 21-22)
Brandi Carlile with Sheryl Crow and Yola
"The experience of listening to Brandi Carlile's 2018 album, By the Way, I Forgive You, is similar to that of listening to Carole King's Tapestry or Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks; it's a little bit country, a little bit rock and roll, and a lot of hard truths about the human race," wrote former Stranger staffer Kim Selling. Your fandom energy will be tripled at this outdoor concert with Sheryl Crow and Yola, which we can only hope will involve a blissful rendition of "If It Makes You Happy."
Gorge Amphitheatre, George (Sat Aug 14)
Even if you only know her for the Titanic soundtrack, everyone knows Celine Dion is a legend. The pop superstar is going strong on her Courage World Tour, which will stop in the south end.
Tacoma Dome (Thurs Aug 26)
Early '00s alt-rock stalwarts the Counting Crows will take over Redmond for a summer evening of music.
Marymoor Park, Redmond (Sun Aug 29)
Dick's Drive-In Summer Series
When you buy a ticket to Dick's Drive-In and Everett Music Initiative's Friday music series, you'll get access to the local burger chain's food truck, which (if you're 21+) comes complete with Elysian beer, Tito's cocktails, and local wine from Pasek Cellars. As for the music, the lineup kills it with Everett's own Moondoggies (Aug 6), Smokey Brights with Shaina Shepherd (Aug 13), Nite Wave (Aug 20), and The Black Tones with Tres Leches (Aug 27).
Wetmore Theatre Plaza, Everett (Aug 6-27)
Bring back the early-mid 2000s with your deep passion for gauged ears, flat-ironed hair, and Pete Wentz's smirk. Emo Nite, presented by Emo Night LA, is the new sensation of reliving your MySpace glory in the form of a high-energy, passionately emo DJ night.
Chop Suey, Capitol Hill (Fri Aug 20)
Few bands double down on jubilant spectacle as hard as Gogol Bordello. The so-called “g*psy punk” outfit, consisting of charismatic singer Eugene Hutz and a revolving door of multi-ethnic and international musicians, blends big, simple rock hooks with accordion, violin, and a quirky sense of humor that is equal parts snarky and literary. At first brush it's the Clash for NPR listeners, but deeper listens reveal a strong dedication to George Clinton's funk sound, as well as big Def Leppard-ish hooks. JOSEPH SCHAEFER
Neptune Theatre, University District (Sat Aug 28)
The boy band will come to Auburn on their Remember This Tour.
White River Amphitheatre, Auburn (Mon Aug 30)
Marrowstone Music Festival
Prepare to be impressed as Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra musicians execute works by the likes of Kodály, Beach, Barber, Vivaldi, Mozart, Pärt, Ginastera, and Stravinsky at this long-running festival.
Benaroya Hall, Downtown (Aug 6-7)
Philly-bred, LA-based rock band Mt. Joy will stop in Seattle on their latest headlining tour.
Moore Theatre, Belltown (Sat Aug 28)
Pink Lotion with Special Guests The National Honor Society & Skates
Pink Lotion, a local dance music project composed of Erik Blood (Knife Knights) and Rachael F. (NighTraiN, Clutch Doublass), will lay down "cosmic tempos and pulsations" with support from The National Honor Society and Skates.
Clock-Out Lounge, Beacon Hill (Fri Aug 20)
Primus - A Tribute to Kings
Legendary odd-ballers Primus have been at it for roughly a quarter of a century, hacking away at their mud-on-your-tires carnival punk all the way.
Marymoor Park, Redmond (Sat Aug 14)
Refill Live: Block Party & Live Stream
A slew of Seattle musicians will perform at this block party and benefit concert for Vera Project’s new Equip the Kids program, which aims to provide a "launching board into creative industries" for underserved youth in King County. The stacked lineup includes hometown heroes like Blimes and Gab, Stas THEE Boss, Enumclaw, Archie, and Brujita XO, plus other as-yet-unannounced guests.
Ninth and Thomas, South Lake Union (Sun Aug 15)
SAM Performs: Pop-Up at The Park
The Seattle Art Museum will add an element of surprise to your Thursday evenings by hosting free pop-up music performances in the park.
Olympic Sculpture Park, Belltown (through Aug 12)
Seattle Opera Welcome Back Concert: Die Walküre
Seattle Opera will give you a taste of what's to come at this outdoor performance of Richard Wagner's larger-than-life opera Die Walküre.
Fisher Pavilion, Seattle Center (Sat Aug 28)
Tame Impala with Perfume Genius
Australian psych-rock outfit Tame Impala, no strangers to the festival circuit, will head up this outdoor concert with support from queer pop dignitary (and excellent Tweeter) Perfume Genius.
Gorge Amphitheatre, George (Fri Aug 6)
Under Pressure: A Night of Bowie and Queen
Does rejoining the world stress you out? Break free from the shackles of your anxiety (if only for the night) at this DJ dance party bumping hits by Queen and David Bowie.
Neumos, Capitol Hill (Fri Aug 27)
This country-music festival will return to the Gorge for a wild weekend of twangin' goodness. Put on your "Shedder gear" (trucker hats?) and get ready for three whole days of down-home studs. This year's headliners include Tim McGraw, Dierks Bentley, Ashley McBride, Blanco Brown, and others.
Gorge Amphitheatre, George (through Aug 1)
Now in its 39th year (last year's festival was canceled due to COVID), ZooTunes is a Seattle tradition that brings big-name artists to the bucolic North Meadow of the Woodland Park Zoo. You can thank KEXP for curating this year's lineup, which rounds out this month with Ivan & Alyosha with Left at London, Naked Giants, True Loves with Smokey Brights, Damien Jurado with Black Belt Eagle Scout, Helio Sequence with Shaina Shepherd, Shabazz Palaces with Dave Shanae, and Polyrhythmics with the Black Tones. Seating pods will be available for parties of two, four, six, and 10, and outside food will not be permitted.
Woodland Park Zoo, Phinney (through Aug 25)
The Comedy of Errors
Local theater company Wooden O revive one of Shakespeare's oldest comedies for the outdoor stage(s).
Various locations (through Sept 8)
GreenStage's Shakespeare in the Park
Laying out a spread of one's favorite snacks and swatting away gnats as players belt familiar verses of iambic pentameter across a park lawn never gets old. GreenStage's free Shakespeare in the Park series returns this year with productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Twelfth Night, and The Tempest.
Various locations (through Aug 14)
LEO Party 2021
Leo season can only mean one thing: gratuitous selfies a big sparkly party with drag queens, drag kings, and go-go boys galore! DJs Luis and Flow will spin in between performances from hosts Aleksa and Atasha Manila, plus other local stars like Amora Dior Black, Siren St. James, and Roxy Doll. Proceeds will benefit Entre Hermanos and C895 public radio.
Neighbours, Capitol Hill (Aug 8-9)
Listen, we love Chicago, but it's too long. The drag hostesses of this booze-filled revue (Isabella Extynn, Ruby Bouché, and Louvel) think so too, which is why they've pared down the Broadway musical to a cool 25 minutes.
Unicorn, Capitol Hill (Aug 1-Nov 14)
Minority Retort in Seattle Presents: Subhah Agarwal!
This Portland-based stand-up comedy event offers a platform to redress this imbalance by championing comics of color. It'll mark its return to the Seattle stage with a set from Subhah Agarwal, a writer for the recent Hulu comedy Plan B.
Rendezvous, Belltown (Sat Aug 14)
The Seattle Boylesque Festival
Male and genderqueer burlesque dancers from across the country will blast gender norms apart with the aid of titillating moves and generously bared skin. Don't miss local favorites like Ernie Von Schmaltz and Waxie Moon, and guests from afar like Montreal's Mimi Minx and Sudbury's MC Unicorn.
Triple Door, Downtown (Aug 6-7)
Whim W'Him Summer Park Pop-Ups
The local contemporary dance company's Michael Arellano, Ashley Green, and Andrew McShea will treat park-dwellers to a series of free outdoor performances at sunset.
Various locations (Aug 18-27)
READINGS & TALKS
Billie Jean King
Feminist icon and former pro tennis player Billie Jean King will read from her new memoir, All In, to kick off Seattle Arts & Lectures' 2021/22 season. According to press materials, the book "chronicles King’s journey to find her true self, from her humble beginnings to her brilliant tennis career, her activism, and her unwavering commitment to fairness and social justice."
Online (Tues Aug 17)
Molly Wizenberg with Matthew Amster-Burton
Seattle food celebs Molly Wizenberg and Matthew Amster-Burton will appear in conversation with Elliott Bay. While the pair co-host the funny local podcast Spilled Milk, don't expect a live episode—instead, look forward to hearing Wizenberg discuss her second memoir, The Fixed Stars, upon its paperback release.
Elliott Bay Book Company, Capitol Hill (Tues Aug 3)
Silent Reading Party: In-Person
The concept of Christopher Frizzelle's Silent Reading Party is as simple as it gets (pick out a book and head to Hotel Sorrento's well-appointed lobby on the first Wednesday of every month to read in a comfy chair while a live pianist plays in the background), but it's a Seattle tradition of the highest order. If your disdain for waiting in line has prevented you from attending in the past, great news: in celebration of its IRL return to its historic digs, attendees can now reserve a spot in advance!
Hotel Sorrento, First Hill (Wed Aug 4)
SPORTS & RECREATION
Seattle Marathon Summer 5/10/15K 2021
Before the main Seattle Marathon in November, warm up with a 5, 10, or 15K course through Seward Park's old-growth forest.
Seward Park Amphitheater (Sat Aug 28)
Art Battle Seattle
In this live painting tournament, local artists transform black canvases into colorful pieces in three rounds. Watch the artists at work, then help decide which piece should win.
Hale's Palladium, Fremont (Fri Aug 27)
BAM Arts Fair
The Bellevue Arts Museum is turning 75! They'll fête the occasion with a virtual version of their annual fair, where you can admire (and purchase) work by over 100 juried artists.
Online (through Aug 5)
Black Refractions: Highlights from The Studio Museum in Harlem
Nearly 80 artworks created by Black artists between the 1920s and the present, from Barkley Hendricks to Lorna Simpson to Alma Thomas, are on display courtesy of the American Federation of Arts and the Studio Museum in Harlem.
Frye Art Museum, First Hill (through Aug 15)
Edmonds Arts Festival
Enjoy three days of arts, entertainment, shopping, and dining, with a wide selection of more than 400 artist booths, three juried galleries, and over 1,000 pieces of K-12 student art, plus food vendors and other attractions.
Frances Anderson Center, Edmonds (Aug 27-29)
LUSIO Lights Festival
The Kent farm will be filled with nature-inspired light-art installations. Attendees are encouraged to dress in "glowing, LED, light-up attire," which for many will mean a profusion of glow-stick necklaces.
Mary Olsen Farm, Kent (Aug 27-28)
Seattle Deconstructed Air Fair
Over 40 galleries are coming together for the second iteration of the Seattle Deconstructed Art Fair, which will take place across the city all month long. (FYI, the festival will return in its original form in July of 2022!)
Various locations, Pioneer Square (Aug 5-31)
Seattle Design Festival Block Party
Design nerds, rejoice! This festival, which took to the internet last year to great success, will return in the flesh for two days of built installations and pop-up experiences that explore how urbanism, architecture, and design can further justice, ecology, and community. Naturally, many of the events are also inspired by the new (and hopefully not short-lived) return to relative social normalcy—one installation, "Person to Person," allows two individuals to talk to each other without seeing each other's faces.
Lake Union Park, South Lake Union (Aug 21-22)
Will Rawls: Everlasting Stranger
New York-based choreographer and writer Will Rawls explores the relationship between language, dance, and image through stop-motion animation. In this installation, a live, automated camera photographs the frame-by-frame actions of four dancers, slowing their movement into picture-like fragments.
Henry Art Gallery, University District (through Aug 15)