James City County Parks and Recreation offers a variety of large and small-scale special events that provide unique year-round experiences for residents and tourists. Below is a list of annual events – for more specific information about dates of current offerings, please refer to the Special Events section of the Destination Recreation Activity Brochure.
Family Fun Night
Join us for a night of family FUN and entertainment 'after hours' at the James City County Recreation Center - enjoy gym games, create various craft projects, splash in the pool, dance to some tunes, play racquetball or old-fashioned board games! Preregistration recommended. If preregistering, please register everyone who is attending! Children must be accompanied by an adult! $5 for ages 13+; FREE for 12 and younger.
Don’t miss the PAW-ty! Grab your leash and get to the park with your furry friend for a great time! Family and dog-friendly activities, games, contests, fabulous food ($) and more awaits you! Merchandise ($) and community vendors will also be present. Co-sponsor: Heritage Humane Society. $5 per car.
Half Century Senior Games
Join us for James City County’s Senior Games! This event caters to adults age 50 or better who enjoy a bit of competition and staying active. Events for 2022 will be announced in December. For event questions, phone 757-259-5355 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Summer Camp Fair - May
Want to sign up the kids for summer camp? Looking for something NEW this year? Attend the annual Summer Camp Fair to learn about great camps and register your kids at the same time. FREE for families to attend. Offered in partnership with WilliamsburgFamilies.com. For more information on the Fair, please contact Kristy Manor at email@example.com or Olivia Bada at Olivia.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Family Fun Fest - May
Chickahominy Riverfront Park Enjoy petting animals, hands-on activities, inflatable rides, family entertainment with music and contests too! “Touch-a-Truck” is back for all ages! Stop by the “Good for You Zone” and see why being healthy can lead to loads of fun. Oh, and be sure to participate in the Fun Run! Grab some lunch provided by our food vendors and visit all of our local craft and business vendors!
Movies Under the Stars
Chickahominy Riverfront Park
Typically held 2-3 times each summer at 8:30 p.m. Enjoy some of the great box office titles out under the stars in a James City County Park!
Tails on the Trail - June
Greensprings Interpretive Trail Typically held the first Saturday in June from 9-11 a.m. at Greensprings Interpretive Trail. Are you up for a summer-long trail adventure with your dog? Join the Heritage Humane Society for this kick-off event! This self-guided adventure will start you off at one of the 8 trails for your exploration through the summer. Did you know the first Saturday in June is also National Trails Day? Get active with your pet! For more information, visit heritagehumanesociety.org.
Capital Color Ride - June
You’ve heard of The Color Run™, but how about a color ride? Enjoy this family-friendly biking event along a 15-mile stretch of the Virginia Capital Trail. Venture from Chickahominy Riverfront Park to the James City County Marina and back, while encountering color stops, snacks, water and more at the rest stops. Registration includes a free shirt and refreshments, while supplies last.
Student Art Show - Begins June
Williamsburg Regional Library Anne Kushnick's oil painting, pastel and acrylic students will display their talents in this annual exhibit. View many unique pieces with some available for purchase. For more information on fine arts classes, phone 757-259-5353 or visit our website at jamescitycountyva.gov/recreation.
Freedom Stories & More - June
Typically held the third or fourth Saturday in June from noon-3 p.m. Join Williamsburg native Dylan Pritchett, best known as “The Storyteller” along with other Virginia Black Storytellers (VirBS) as they share with you Freedom Stories at Freedom Park! The Free Black Settlement area is the backdrop for this special event. Also featured are unique crafts for kids, music and food available for purchase.
Project FiveFortySeven - June 20
Various Locations (5:47 a.m. - sunset)
It’s the longest day of the year, make time to play! Join Parks & Recreation for the 4th Annual Longest Day of Play program. Enjoy FREE recreational activities from sunrise to sunset. Check out our full program listing, typically posted in May. Be sure to see which programs require registration and which are drop-in.
Movies Under the Stars
Typically held 2-3 times each summer at 8:30 p.m. at Chickahominy Riverfront Park. Enjoy some of the great box office titles out under the stars in a James City County Park!
Scarecrow Row - Sept. 18Jamestown Beach Event Park (11 a.m. - 1 p.m.)
Come out for this social distanced and FUN event making a scarecrow with your family. Make the biggest, the best, and maybe the only scarecrow in your neighborhood! Families must preregister for their scarecrow by Sept. 10. Fee includes all supplies (hay, clothes, paints, brushes and your space on the event field). Not able to make the event date/time, or prefer to make your scarecrow at home? No problem! Select the “at home kit” and we’ll package your supplies for pick-up on Monday, Sept. 20. Masks required in common areas.
Boo Bash at the Beach - Oct. 16Jamestown Beach Event Park (1-4 p.m.)
Enjoy a day at the beach with a Halloween twist! Costumes welcome. Trick-or-treating onsite for ages 12 and younger. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Also enjoy onsite activities, music, games, and more! Pumpkin carving and decorating ($5/pumpkin) available first-come, first-served while supplies last. NEW this year, families MUST preregister by Oct. 13 - please select a preferred time slot at registration, 1-2:30 p.m. or 2:30-4 p.m. Masks required.
Live Well Expo - Nov. 5 - CANCELED for 2021
James City County Recreation Center (8 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.)
Pamper your mind, body and spirit while taking advantage of FREE preventative health screenings during this annual event! Explore a variety of health and leisure services for ages 55+.
Virginia Capital Trail (8 a.m. - 1 p.m.)
Bike the Bridge - Nov. 6
Available in English and Spanish
Santa Calling - Dec. 7
James City County Parks & Recreation offers “phone calls from Santa” on Tuesday, Dec. 7, for children ages 9 and younger living in James City County and Williamsburg. Arrangements have been made with the North Pole for Santa and/or Mrs. Claus to personally call each child who completes a registration form by Wednesday, Dec. 1. Santa will attempt to call children between 5:45-8 p.m.; however, specific call times cannot be guaranteed due to Santa’s holiday schedule. Please be available and keep phone lines open during this time. Registration are available at the Recreation Centers, Chickahominy Riverfront Park, Satellite Services in Toano, Freedom Park Interpretive Center and online.
Breakfast with Santa - Dec. 11
James City County Recreation Center (9-11 a.m.)
You and your family are invited to attend Breakfast with Santa. Enjoy a pancake breakfast and a morning of “holly-day” cheer with Santa. Photo opportunities available. Registration required by Dec.1 or until full. Please register everyone who is attending (adults and children) to ensure their seat – fee includes special gift for each attendee. $12/person for age 3+; FREE for 2 and younger.
You are invited to be a community or merchandise concessionaire at our annual events. Events currently accepting applications are listed below.
Please note, community and merchandise concessionaires are accepted on a first come, first served basis. If you would like to be added to the concessionaire list and receive emails about upcoming events accepting applications, contact email@example.com.
A community concessionaire is defined as an organization or business wanting to provide information to the general public. This designation does not allow sales of any kind.
A merchandise concessionaire is defined as an organization or business wanting to sell products, to include, but not limited to: jewelry, clothing, custom artwork or crafts, oils, packaged goods, etc.
Food Truck & Table Top Concessionaires
Food trucks or table top concessionaires are also accepted at most events. If interested, please contact Special Events Coordinator, Kelley Herbert, at firstname.lastname@example.org, prior to submitting an application.
- Boo Bash at the Beach - Oct 16
- Fido Fest - March (typically 3rd weekend)
- Family Fun Fest - May (typically 3rd weekend)
- Harvest Festival - September (typically 3rd weekend)