Summer is officially here which means two things are at their peak - summer harvest and festivals. This also means that festivals celebrating the foods of summer are peaking and Loudoun has several coming up in the next few weeks. From local wine festivals to certified barbecue competitions and pick-your-own fruit, here are some summer food festivities that should make it onto your calendar.

Farm to Fork Loudoun is the quintessential celebration of farm-to-table dining. In its second year, this 11 day, county wide event features 22 restaurants showcasing Loudoun food, wine, and spirits. Participating restaurants commit to creating menus that are 70% locally sourced.  Eight of Loudoun’s nine Destination Restaurants are participating this year as well as local favorites Clyde’s at Willow Creek Farms, Rangoli Indian Restaurant, and The French Hound. It’s a great opportunity to visit your favorite restaurant, try a couple of new ones, and sample Loudoun’s finest products as interpreted by local chefs.

The inaugural Purcellville Wine & Food Festival is an evening event hosted in historic downtown Purcellville. The downtown will come to life with wine tastings, culinary treats from local restaurants, and live music easing you into the evening.  Six Loudoun wineries will be sampling their current vintages including Fabbioli Cellars, North Gate Vineyards, and 8 Chains North. Enjoy food from Magnolias at the Mill, Boodacades BBQ, and more.

No one knows festivals like Great Country Farms which hosts over ten a year. They recently modified their summer blackberry festival to include another favorite food of summer – BBQ! The Bluemont BBQ Bash & Blackberry Bonanza features some serious barbecue. The Kansas City Barbecue Society has certified this competition and it draws competitors from all over the country. Tickets are available to taste the BBQ in the competition but there’s limited availability so get yours now! Don’t forget the blackberries - they’ll be at their peak and since they’re thornless, perfect for picking.  The activities hosted during this festival are numerous but include a waiter’s race, blackberry wine tastings, tie-dying “Got Berries” t-shirts, live music, and much, much more!