Dating back to 1980, the Jacksonville Jazz Festival has evolved into one of the premier jazz festivals in the country, and certainly the epicenter of the genre in the city. There is no shortage of jazzy jam sessions here that will keep calling you back to the dance floor. With artists that range from Grammy-nominated Samara Joy to an R&B titan like Charlie Wilson, this festival is the Memorial Day move in Jacksonville.
The weekend will kick off on Thursday with a jam session at the Florida Theatre, where jazz pianists will come together for a night of competition. On Friday, the festival will move back downtown for free outdoor concerts on two stages named the Groovin & Swingin, respectively. In addition to the performances, the festival will have a variety of food and beverage vendors, as well as an arts and crafts marketplace.
- Last year’s festival saw upwards of more than 60,000 people attend
- VIP ticket packages are on sale now, but there is no ticket required for this jazz festival. This is a free event open to the public.
- Check out Fifty Grande’s guide to Florida here.
Where are the stages located? The Groovin’ stage is located at Ford on Bay, a park in Downtown Jacksonville. The Swingin’ stage is located at Riverfront Plaza in Downtown Jacksonville as well.