Looking for a Cool Summer? It’s Easy to Find in Henrico

Looking for a Cool Summer? It’s Easy to Find in Henrico

It’s no secret: Employees want lives outside of the job. It’s why quality of life is a key consideration in site selection.

In less vibrant communities, your workforce might slump into the summer doldrums – but not in Henrico. We offer an abundance of activities to keep the entertainment level high. So whether your kids are out of school or you’re searching for ways to fill your own summer days, here’s a list of ways to savor the season in our region.

Looking to unwind? The sound of good vibrations can set the mood for a sweet summer night.

  • Innsbrook after Hours. From Brett Young to Boyz II Men, there’s something for everyone at Henrico’s outdoor concert series – now celebrating its 34th year.
  • Virginia Credit Union Live! Speed down to Richmond Raceway and jam to top acts like Bastille in a 6,000-seat outdoor amphitheater.
  • Richmond Symphony Summer Recital. Get inspired at this “classic” collaboration between the Richmond Symphony, the University of Richmond Department of Music, and VCUarts Department of Music. This year’s theme is “Exploring America.”
  • ​Richmond Jazz Fest. Soothe your soul with four days of smooth jazz at Maymont Park. You’ll sway to musicians like Big Boi and the Jack Wilkins Quartet. Purchase single tickets or weekend passes, or even rent a cabana to party with friends.

Parks and Recreation
If you want to soak in the sites, the region offers more than 40 parks and recreation facilities for you to enjoy

  • Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. This Henrico spot was voted one of best botanical gardens in America – but it features more than flowers. Try yoga in the garden, experience butterflies taking flight, and much more.
  • Henrico Theatre $1 Movie Nights. Looking for affordable fun? You found it. Enjoy recent hits like “Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse” and “Captain Marvel.”
  • Kings Dominion. This amusement park is the perfect place to entertain the kids. Rent a cabin, book a hotel, hook up the RV at the campsite, or simply spend the day. The park features 12 roller coasters – including the Intimidator 305, one of tallest, fastest rides on the east coast.
  • Redskins Training Camp. Watch the pros practice and get their autographs. Get your tickets for the Celebrate in the End Zone event, where you can meet former players and bid at silent auctions.
  • Flying Squirrels Game. Take in a minor league game and catch players on the rise who may play for the San Francisco Giants one day.
  • First Fridays. On the first Friday of each month, venture downtown to the Richmond Arts District to celebrate local artists, shop, dine, and enjoy live performances.
  • Riverfront Canal Cruises. It’s the 20th season of this history-themed narrated boat tour of the James River and Kanawha Canal.

Outdoor Adventure
Seeking a few thrills?

  • Virginia Capital Trail. Grab your bicycle and set out on 52 miles of multi-use trail spanning from Richmond to Williamsburg. Kick off your adventure at Four Mile Creek or Dorey Park trailheads in Henrico.
  • James River Park System. Enjoy a day of exploration or have a park-sponsored adventure. Hit the bike trails, rock-climb, or keep it low-key with birdwatching.
  • Break Away RVA. Enjoy the ride and join the community at this free monthly bike meetup that features surprise destinations.
  • Riverside Outfitters and RVA Paddlesports; Soak up the water sports at these spots for natural recreation enthusiasts. Enjoy tubing, rafting, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding. Take on the class IV rapids of the James or try a more tranquil eco tour.

Farmers Markets
There are several delicious ways to spend the day and support local farmers.

  • Lakeside Farmers Market. In 2011, this Henrico fave was also voted the number-one market in Virginia in America Farmland Trust’s “America’s Favorite Farmers’ Market Contest.” The site is open year-round every Saturday and Wednesday. Bonus: Walk one quick block and you can drop into Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden.
  • Dorey Park Farmers Market. In association with Henrico Recreation and Parks, this farmers’ market’s mission is to provide everyone with easy access to fresh food, plus play host to lots of family-friendly events.
  • South of the James Farmers Market. This open-air market in Forest Hill Park offers food trucks, crafts from local artisans, and more.
  • West End Farmers Market. Established in 2008, this market is a community-oriented spot with the motto “From farm to family.”

Eat and Drink
Calling all foodies: Grab a fork and raise a glass. When you live in Henrico, there’s lots to cheer.

  • James River Fridays on the Patio. This summer concert series at James River Cellars Winery features live music, food trucks and of course wine tastings.
  • RVA Beer Trail. Grab a map. There are over 30 breweries to enjoy in and around town. Wherever you visit, be sure to get a stamp so you can earn some cool gear.
  • Science on Tap. Stop by the Science Museum of Virginia for this quarterly themed event for the 21+ crowd. Learn how science affects your life while enjoying wine, beer, and food trucks.
  • Hardywood Food Truck Court: Experience a rotating cast of local food trucks at Hardywood Brewery’s West Creek or Richmond sites. Though the adult drinks shine, it’s also a family-friendly atmosphere.
  • Watermelon Festival: Five stages. 50 performances. 100 street vendors. 3,000 watermelons. 115,000 guests. Need we say more?

Expand You Minds – and sometimes your bellies – at these cultural stops.

  • Virginia Museum of Fine Art:  This facility is one of the largest in the United States and save for special exhibits; admission is free. Current offerings range from the photography of Carl Ciarenza to the art of Tibetan Buddhism. Be sure to stop by the Jazz Cafe on a Thursday to catch eclectic ensemble bands. The museum also offers happy hour specials and free tours every week at their Friday Art & Wine event.
  • Science Museum of Virginia:  The experiential exhibits will keep kids entertained while the Dome Theater – one of the largest in the state at 76 feet tall – is sure to entertain the kid in us all.
  • Institute for Contemporary Art: Opening just one year ago, this new museum offers constantly rotating exhibits featuring the art of our time. Admission is free.
  • Civil War Museum and Tredegar Iron Works: Stop by and explore the Civil War as told from the perspective of all who lived it – Union and Confederate soldiers, civilians, and enslaved and free African Americans.

In short, there are plenty of ways for you and your employees to mix it up and enjoy the season here, whether you’re a Gen Zer who recently graduated, a single millennial, settling down, or in your senior years.