Food, art, music, culture, free haircuts


Downtown Erie’s summer showcase of music, food, culture and art is back.

After being closed in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CelebrateErie is ready for a big return to downtown Erie Friday through Sunday.

They are back:CelebrateErie, the fireworks by the bay will be back this summer

The multi-day festival will take place rain or shine, featuring vendors, musicians, performers, chalk artists and nationally acclaimed musical acts from across the Erie area.

CelebrateErie typically draws over 200,000 people downtown over its three days.

All festivities are free and take place in a downtown footprint centered around State Street between Fourth and Ninth Streets.

Mayor Joe Schamberr said Aaron Loncki – the city of Erie’s marketing strategist and key organizer of CelebrateErie – and other festival organizers “worked hard to provide (attendees) a wonderful and memorable experience.”

Loncki said the festival will be a “diverse showcase of all things Erie…food, family, art, music, business and culture. Because everything revolves around us.

CelebrateErie offers new items this year.

They include “Jam Sesh”, a drop-in music space for musicians from a variety of backgrounds; a youth basketball tournament affiliated with the city’s Police Athletic League; “walk-in” three-point basketball and cornhole contests; and a drum circle showcase.

If you plan to attend, here are some important things to know about the three-day festival.

For more information about the festival, including specific performance/event times and locations, visit

Food, art, vendors and more: where are CelebrateErie’s hotspots?

The Food District will be located in West Perry Square. Local food trucks and food and drink vendors will serve a diverse mix of meals and treats – from barbecue and tortillas to grilled sandwiches and ice cream – throughout the day.

Odis 12 Bar & Grille cooks, from left, Kevin Lubak, Eric Broffman and Kameron Murray, work during Taste of Erie at the CelebrateErie opening night in Erie on August 16, 2018.

The VNET Fiber Family District will be in East Perry Square, with the Metro T-Mobile Family Stage featuring dance and gymnastics numbers, story time, kids’ yoga, Erie Playhouse shows and other entertainment/activities.

The Marquette Savings Bank Chalk Walk, one of CelebrateErie’s most popular attractions, will feature nearly 30 vibrant chalk drawings created by local artists covering one city block. Chalk Walk is located along State Street between Eighth and Ninth Streets.

The Erie Insurance Market is also along State Street between South Park Row and Eighth Street. This is where you will find sellers of jewelry, handcrafted glass and many other items; exhibitions of artists and small businesses; and more.

The festival will also feature a number of artists performing their works live, on the street at various locations and an artist gallery, curated by City Gallery, showcasing works/talents by artists from across the region. Erie.

There will also be various vendors set up throughout Perry Square.

Moreover, the Jefferson Educational Society will also offer a series of talks and educational events at CelebrateErie, including a walking tour led by Erie Downtown Development Corp. CEO John Persinger; presentations on the history of Lower State Street, Erie’s new American population, Erie politics, Lake Erie/environmental protection, and freshwater fishing.

These presentations are held at Erie City Hall, 626 State St. For more information, visit

And if you need a haircut, CelebrateErie has you covered.

A one-stop street barbershop, coordinated by local barber Michael Hooks, will be set up between South Park Row and East Seventh Street, with a number of Erie-area barbers offering free haircuts to anyone who need it, including students heading back to school soon.

Who rocks Northwest Bank’s main stage?

CelebrateErie:Main Stage Headliners Announced

Pop rock band X Ambassadors, hip-hop artists Ja Rule and Mýa and rising country music star Jimmie Allen headline CelebrateErie.

The members of the pop rock group X Ambassadors are, from left, Casey Harris, Sam Harris and Adam Levin.

The festival’s main stage is located on State Street between Fourth and Fifth Streets.

Hailing from Ithaca, New York, the X Ambassadors take over the festival’s main stage on Friday night. The group’s hits include “Renegades” and “Unsteady” from their platinum-certified album “VHS”, released in 2015. The group’s third full album, “The Beautiful Liar”, was released in 2021.

Famous New York rapper Ja Rule, whose debut album “Venni Vetti Vecci” was released in 1999 with the single “Holla Holla”, performs at 8:30 p.m. Saturday. Grammy-winning R&B singer Mya continues ahead of Ja Rule at 7:15 p.m.

Hip-hop artist Ja Rule.

Ja Rule has sold over 30 million records worldwide and has been nominated for four Grammy Awards. His other hits include the remix “I’m Real” with Jennifer Lopez and “Always on Time” with Ashanti.

Mya is best known for the singles “Ghetto Superstar”, “Take Me There” and “Free”, as well as the Billboard Hot 100 topping 2001 remake “Lady Marmalade” featuring Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Pink and Missy Elliot.

The Grammy-winning R&B artist Mýa is scheduled as one of the Saturday night headliners at CelebrateErie.

The song, featured in the movie “Moulin Rouge”, became the most successful single in broadcast-only history and won the 2002 Grammy for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals.

Rising country music star Jimmie Allen will perform on the main stage Sunday at 8 p.m. on the final night of CelebrateErie.

Allen, nominated for the Grammy for Best New Artist in 2022, released his debut album “Mercury Lane” in 2018 and became the first black artist to launch a career with two consecutive No. 1 hits on country radio: the hits ” Best Shot” and “Make Me Want To.” He also had a hit single last spring with “Down Home.”

In addition to Celebrate Erie’s main stage, the festival will feature four downtown “district stages” showcasing musical acts and performing artists from across the Erie area.

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What about parking?

City officials suggest several public parking locations within walking distance of the event, as a number of streets within the festival footprint will be closed to vehicular traffic:

  • The Peach Street Parking Lot, 712 Peach St.
  • The Erie Parking Authority Garage B, 24 E. Eighth St.
  • The East 10th Street parking garage at 25 E. 10th St.
  • The West Ninth Street parking garage at 120 W Ninth St.

Handicap accessible parking is also available on the north side of West Seventh Street between State and Peach streets. In addition, parking will be available in various streets adjacent to the event.

leave it at home

Due to large crowds expected, city officials advise against bringing dogs or other pets unless the animal is a certified service animal. Concerts on the main stage are standing only, so people should not bring chairs. Bicycles, hoverboards and skateboards are also not permitted in the main festival areas.

Contact Kevin Flowers at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at @ETNflowers.

Main Stage Acts


  • Six-year stretch, 5:30 p.m.
  • First at eleven, 6:30 p.m.
  • X Ambassadors, 8 p.m.


  • CEE Brown Experience, 5:30 p.m.
  • Mya, 7:15 p.m.
  • Ja Rule, 8:30 p.m.


  • Shelter, 5:30 p.m.
  • Brenna Bone, 6:30 p.m.
  • Jimmie Allen, 8 p.m.

Some highlights from CelebrateErie

  • Chalk walk: Located along State Street between Eighth and Ninth Streets
  • Food district: Located in West Perry Square
  • VNET Fiber Family District: Located in East Perry Square, with the Metro T-Mobile family scene offering various types of entertainment/activities
  • Erie Insurance Market: Located along State Street, between South Park Row and Eighth Street, with various vendors, artists and small businesses


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