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In addition to concerts, Farmer’s Markets and other get-togethers that take place around the community, the City of Mount Vernon hosts four big events annually. These are family-friendly, free to attend and open to everyone.

Featured Events & Festivals


Chalk the Walk

first Saturday and Sunday in May

Every first weekend in May, more than 200 artists flock to Mount Vernon to fill the city with art using the streets as their canvas.

Easter Dash

Saturday before Easter

Bring your family out to the Mount Vernon High School Track for a chance to win prizes during this BIG Easter egg hunt.

Heritage Days

Thursday - Saturday, July 11-13, 2024

This four-day summer festival celebrates the past, present and future of Mount Vernon with fireworks displays, carnival games, live music and more.

Magical Night

November 30, 2023

Magical Night celebrates the start of the winter holiday season with a variety of events, performances and special window displays.

More Great Annual Events


Chili Cook-Off

October 14, 2023

This event features dozens of chili samples, music, a bags tournament and ice-cold beer. Depending on local and state football schedules, the date of this event changes every year but almost always takes place on a Saturday in October.

Chocolate Stroll

Saturday, June 3, 2023

This event takes place on the first Saturday in June and invites festival goers to stroll up and down Mount Vernon’s Main Street District enjoying chocolates for sample and sale along the way. Don’t miss the children’s activities and the .5K walk/run for children of all ages.

Lincoln Highway Arts Festival

September 23, 2023

The Mount Vernon Area Arts Council hosts this event in late September. Be sure to take in all the art and art demonstrations throughout the Uptown district.

Memorial Day Parade & Service

This annual moving tribute to our veterans takes place in both Uptown Mount Vernon and downtown Lisbon. Join us at either location for a march out to our local cemeteries for speeches, music and a 21-gun salute.

Mount Vernon Citywide Garage Sales

Managed by the Mount Vernon-Lisbon Sun newspaper, this all-community garage sale normally takes place on the second Saturday of June throughout both communities. A great day for bargain hunters!

Music on Main Concerts

These professional concerts take place in the Uptown Theatre space inside the First Street Community Center, 221 1st St. NE. This former Middle School houses 15 businesses and is also home to Dance Arts Iowa, Music Works and the Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Theatre. The Music on Main concerts takes place up to three times a year in the theater space.

Nitty Gritty Antique Festival

This free open-air, rain-or-shine antique festival welcomes dozens of antique vendors who set up in the street. Too hot or rainy? Take refuge in one of eight local antique stores and/or nine local food establishments and wait out the weather. We love shoppers!

Portrayal of Mount Vernon

Sponsored by local art gallery Mount Vernon Creates, this event normally take place in the early spring and celebrates the area’s many plein air artists who gather in town to paint parks, buildings and local landscapes. The event is followed by an exhibit that features the work created that day.

Small Business Saturday

Saturday after Thanksgiving

Look for specials and door busters throughout the Main Street District and sign up for Community Cash gift certificate giveaways via the fishbowl at Shop Small HQ throughout the day. Due to the popularity of this event, a second Saturday in early November has been added in recent years.

Tuneful Tuesdays

These “old-fashioned” concerts take place Tuesdays in June at the Gazebo in Memorial Park, 311 1st St., Mount Vernon. The free concerts are accompanied by free popcorn and water supplied by Mount Vernon Bank & Trust Co. and the Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group (CDG), respectively. All are welcome.

Volunteer Appreciation Party

The Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Development Group manages this volunteer summer party that traditionally has a colorful theme and lots of food. Come join us in thanking the volunteers who keep all of these events and projects going. It’s a hoot!