Downtown Fort Wayne has enough summer music to fill your calendar to the brim. With most of the music events being free, your wallet will be brimming, too. From the Embassy, to Promenade Park, and everywhere in between, live music is all over town this summer. Soak up the sun with some afternoon tunes, or catch some evening vibes with a summer soirée.
Whatever your style, the Downtown Fort Wayne summer music scene promises to deliver. So mark your calendars, grab your loved ones, and sway along. There are at least two months left of lineups; get out here and make some summer memories!
If you’re an early-to-bed type, Downtown Live! is the perfect Friday evening event—start at 6:00pm, out at 8:00pm. Grab dinner nearby, catch some free live music, and get all your socializing in before the sun has set. On the other hand, if you’re a late-night type, what better way to start your Friday night than with an outdoor alley party? Their strong lineup goes all the way into September.
July 14: Q & The Cold Fusion (fusion jazz)
July 21: Wallen Road Band (country/southern/classic rock)
July 28: Shannon Persinger Band (variety)
August 4: Sunset Música (Latin/jazz fusion)
August 11: Wade’s World (alternative rock)
August 18: Alicia Pyle and the Locals (variety)
August 25: Jen and the Foggy Creek Band (roots rock)
September 1: Night to Remember (variety)
Every Wednesday, now through August 30, from 5:30pm to 9pm, the Embassy is hosting some of the best local musicians in their stunning ballroom. For just five dollars a show, you get three hours of live music, access to sprawling cityscapes from their rooftop patio, and a cash bar and concessions. Below is their lineup.
July 19: Basketcase (variety/duo)
July 26: Ty Causey (R&B/soul/solo)
August 2: Alicia Pyle & the Locals (jazz quartet)
August 9: Todd Harrold Band (blues/rock)
August 16: Sunset Música (Latin/jazz fusion)
August 23: Chris Worth (variety)
August 30: Hubie Ashcraft Trio (country)
128 years ago, the founders of the Allen County Public Library probably envisioned a near-silent, austere setting to study and read in peace. Nowadays, though, if you head to the library on a Saturday eve, you’ll find Rock the Plaza teeming with sounds. The plaza is a perfect small-scale venue; stand right up up front, or set up a blanket on the lawn and kick back to some family-friendly tunes. Check out their lineup on Saturdays at 6:00pm, through the end of July.
July 15: Moser Woods w/ U.R.B., Tone Junkies, Radio Replay
July 22: Sunglasses at Night w/ Jonah Leatherman, JJ & McRae, The Keystones
July 29: Phil’s Family Lizard w/ Sam Trowbridge Band, Mike Conley, Hustle54
You can also add the library to your list of favorite lunch spots. There are only two more dates this summer, but with live music and food trucks from 11:30pm to 1:30pm, it’s a warm-weather must-do.
August 2: Fort Wayne Funk Orchestra
Food options a-plenty, flower gardens, public art, live music, shady picnic spots in the grass, Freimann Square’s sparkly pond—Lunch on the Square is the perfect place to do lunch! Check out the lineup of bands and food trucks at Freimann Square, every Thursday from 11:30am to 1:30pm.
July 20: Jen and the Foggy Creek Band (roots rock)
July 27: Basketcase (variety)
August 3: Uncle Muscle (rock ‘n’ roll)
August 10: Lisa McDavid Band (variety)
August 17: Pavey and Company (blues/classic rock)
August 24: Angie Marquardt (variety)
August 31: Ross Kinsey (singer/songwriter)
Promenade is one of Downtown Fort Wayne’s most scenic outdoor concert spaces, complete with lawn, swings, and plenty of water features. With three more dates, there’s plenty of time to plan weeknight out with friends and family. Every other Wednesday at 7:00pm, now until August 23.
July 19: Austin Bridges (variety)
August 9: Hubie Ashcraft (variety)
August 23: The Debutants (string rock)
On select Sunday afternoons, Promenade Park has even more live music. With themes that are sure to strike a certain nostalgia (or anemoia for you younger folks), this music series is the perfect way to spend your Sunday fun-days. So put on your sun hat, grab a blanket, and get out here.
August 13 | 2:00pm: New Horizons Band: Old Time Concert in the Park
Just a skip away from Downtown, you’ll find Union Street Market at the historic Electric Works campus. The Market is eight months in, and is quickly catching its stride. There are always new reasons to visit, and their Summer Music Series is the latest. Find everything from Thai, Middle Eastern, and Korean, to pizza, barbeque, cocktails, and decadent desserts—then head out to the patio and enjoy the music.
Friday, July 14 | 8:30pm – 10:30pm: DJ Soft Shoe (vinyl DJ)
Friday, August 4 | 6:30pm to 9:30pm: John Mast (acoustic/singer-songwriter)
Saturday, August 12 | 6pm – 9pm: Fort Wayne Funk Orchestra (funk/hip-hop/soul)
Friday, August 25 | 7:30pm – 9:30pm: Unlikely Alibi (reggae/ska/rock/soul)
Every last Sunday of the month, now through September, get your morning yoga in, grab brunch or lunch, and catch some killer live music. Yoga starts at 11am (sign up online), live music starts at 2pm.
July 30: Esther Rose & J Tubbs (soul/hip-hop)
August 27: DJ Polaris (jazz rap/hip-hop)
September 24: Caledonia (folk rock)
It’s not strictly music (or a series), so let’s call it an annual arts series. Taste of the Arts has been around since 2008, and the live music lineup is always a highlight. With local food, activities for kids, and visual art, it’s an enriching day for anyone and everyone.
When: August 26 | 11am – 6p m
Molly Conner is a Fort Wayne native and freelance writer. Having lived in Downtown Fort Wayne throughout her twenties, she loves watching her stomping grounds grow. With her love of storytelling and community in tow, she’s eager to tell Downtown Fort Wayne’s story piece-by-piece—exploring the people, spaces, and organizations that make it thrive.