Greater Fort Lauderdale plays host to a number of events worth traveling for. From waterfront music festivals to boat shows, food and wine fairs, neighborhood art walks, and pro sports games, the Greater Fort Lauderdale events calendar is constantly full.
Throughout the year, you’ll find spectacular annual events like Pride Fort Lauderdale, the state’s oldest Pride celebration, which draws nearly 350,000 visitors to rooftop pool parties, parades, and concerts. In spring, Tortuga Music Festival puts on a three-day concert in the sand at Fort Lauderdale Beach Park to raise money for ocean conservation and research by bringing big-name acts like Tim McGraw and Luke Bryan. Fort Lauderdale beach is also the locale of the annual Fort Lauderdale Air Show, starring the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, and in October, the largest in-water boat show in the world, the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, brings more than 1,500 boats (including pretty swanky superyachts) to marinas and waterways around the city.
Greater Fort Lauderdale also knows how to turn up the dial and throw memory-making holiday events, like the 4th of July Spectacular on Fort Lauderdale beach and Las Olas Oceanside Park (complete with bands, a kids zone, and a 23-minute firework show). Perhaps the most anticipated event of the year is a Christmas favorite, the Seminole Hard Rock Winterfest Boat Parade, dubbed the “Best Show on H2O.” More than a million viewers tune in to watch decorated boats of all sizes, from mega-yachts to barges and paddle boards, parade along the 12-mile route. Catch the spectacle in person if you can.
In early January, the week-long Visit Lauderdale Food & Wine Festival places the county’s top and emerging chefs and restaurateurs on prime display through poolside BBQs, bar competitions, and grand tastings at the beach. And if you’re visiting in the spring, downtown Fort Lauderdale turns into a four-block street fair helmed by the city’s best chefs and restaurants during the Las Olas Wine & Food Festival. In addition to eating your way around town, you can also sample a selection of more than 100 wines from international wineries while dancing to live music and DJs.
In summer, post up on the sand in Oakland Park for free, family-friendly concerts and food trucks, or enjoy weekend live music along the Broadwalk in Hollywood, where movie night takes place on Fridays at ArtsPark at Young Circle. Friday Night Sound Waves brings free music, a makers market, and food vendors to Fort Lauderdale Beach every Friday, while the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood attracts some of the hottest events in town year-round, including big-name acts like standup comedian Amy Schumer, Alicia Keys, Green Day, and Bruce Springsteen.
Sports are just as much a fabric of Greater Fort Lauderdale as the beaches. Snag front-row seats to both Division 1 college teams as well as the pros like the Florida Panthers ice hockey team, who play from October through April at the FLA Live Arena, which doubles as a concert venue for some of the biggest shows in South Florida.