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The Columbia Pike Blues Festival is returning in June

17th Annual Columbia Pike Blues Festival (photo courtesy Columbia Pike Documentary Project)

The Columbia Pike Blues Festival is returning this summer for its 26th edition.

The annual summer music festival is set to take place on June 17 this year and will span several Columbia Pike blocks. It will feature a collection of performances, local food, beer, and family-friendly activities, as it usually does.

This year’s headliner is Judith Hill, a singer and songwriter featured in the Oscar-winning documentary “20 Feet from Stardom.” She’s performed and worked with John Legend, Josh Groban, Prince, and Michael Jackson and has self-produced several of her own albums.

Also playing at the festival are Annika Chambers and Paul DesLauriers, local blues guitarist Bobby Thompson, Gayle Harrod Band, and Spice Cake Blues.

A number of local restaurants will be providing food and drinks, including New District Brewing. As co-owner Mike Katrivanos told ARLnow last month, the Green Valley-based brewery will be serving beer at the festival again this year despite the fact they may be without a home come June.

Another now-shuttered business, Rincome Thai, is still set to curate the wine list for the Blues Festival.

There will also be a kids activity area, while 9th Rd. S. will be transformed into an “art alley” where the Arlington Art Truck is set to have interactive exhibits, activities, and an exhibit from the Columbia Pike Documentary Project.

More programming and activities are still expected to be added to the line-up this year, Arlington Arts marketing director Jim Byers told ARLnow. Those additions will be announced via social media as it gets closer to the festival.

Arlington Arts co-produces the event with the Columbia Pike Partnership.

About 7,000 people are expected to come to the festival this year, though that depends on the weather, Byers said. In 2022, it’s estimated about 8,000 people attended, as the festival returned to being fully in-person for the first time in three years. It was also the festival’s 25th anniversary.  

The Columbia Pike Blues Festival started in 1995 and, according to organizers, it is considered the largest music festival of its kind in the D.C. area.

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