A letter to our community:


The Chautauqua Festival has been brought to you by the Wythe Arts Council for over 35 years and is a signature event for Wytheville, Wythe County, and all southwest Virginia.

The COVID-19 public health situation has forced us to reevaluate the plans for this year’s event and required some tough decisions. Because of the uncertainty of what we will be facing in the next several weeks and the associated significant impacts to our planning and fundraising efforts, we have been forced to cancel Chautauqua as we know it for 2020.

This is not a decision we arrived at lightly, but the Wythe Arts Council Board must do what it thinks is best for the organization and the community at-large. Our festival was set to start just days after the expiration of the current order, and it’s not certain when large-scale public gatherings will be permitted after that.


We’re appreciative of the tremendous efforts already undertaken by those involved in working toward this year’s festival, and we look forward to redoubling our efforts in the future. Chautauqua will be back in full force in 2021 and we hope you’ll join us for a week full of arts, entertainment, and education.


In the meantime, we will be planning other events and ways to celebrate the arts within our community. We are working on plans to move some events online and are discussing postponement of some other elements of Chautauqua. Even though our festival in the park won’t be happening this June, we remain dedicated to our common cause.


The Chautauqua Festival only happens because of the dedication, efforts, and support of dozens of partners, sponsors, patrons, vendors, and volunteers. We thank everyone in advance for their understanding – we’ll be reaching out to you in the coming days.


We thank you for the support you’ve shown Chautauqua and we hope you’ll continue despite this year’s disruption.


With gratitude,

Wythe Arts Council, Ltd.

The Chautauqua Festival is an eight-day family oriented music and arts festival presented each year by the Wythe Arts Council in Wytheville, Virginia. In its 36th year, it has become an event anticipated all year long by a growing throng of fans locally and across the region. In producing this large undertaking annually, the Wythe Arts Council’s mission is to provide entertainment and extend cultural opportunities to a largely rural area and beyond. What really makes this festival unique is the nightly entertainment is provided to the public, free of charge.

The week-long festivities are conducted in and around Elizabeth Brown Park, just next to the heart of downtown Wytheville. The Festival officially starts with a parade on the third Saturday of June and runs through the following Saturday. On the first Friday evening before the official start the next morning, a Festival Prelude is held featuring a hot air balloon glow, food trucks, games, and a DJ on the lawn at Wytheville Community College.   

During festival week, the park is filled with art displays, photo exhibits, food vendors, and a crafts bazaar. Clowns and actors perform throughout the park and there’s music from local/regional groups that perform on the upper and lower stages. The large number of lunchtime festival visitors can enjoy an array of live music while they eat, too. 

Each night brings a different musical theme with performances on the main stage by regional and national talent. The festival is proud to offer genres like beach music, 50's, country & western, tribute bands, folk, Celtic, gospel, jazz, rock, and bluegrass from the backyard of the Crooked Road. Festival goers bring their lawn chairs and blankets for an evening of FREE entertainment, all underwritten by a host of local sponsors. 

Contact Us

P.O. Box 911
Wytheville, VA 24382

(276) 228-6855

"Creativity is contagious, pass it on."

-Albert Einstein

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© 2019 by Wythe Arts Council, Ltd.