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Top U.S. Festivals to Watch in 2017

From Afropunk to What the Festival and everything in between, see our editor's top picks for can't-miss music festivals this year.

By / January 25, 2017

Air & Style Festival

February 18 - 19

Exposition Park

Shaun White's Air + Style music festival/ snowboarding competition returns with a stacked lineup including Major Lazer, Flume, Chromeo, YG, Zhu, and more.

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crssd fest

CRSSD Festival

March 4 - 5

Waterfront Park

The upcoming event is the first installment of the twice-yearly festival held in downtown San Diego's Waterfront Park; spring 2017 highlights include Flume, Duke Dumont, and Snakehips.



March 10 - 19

Austin, Texas

Now in its 30th year, SXSW is a festival unlike any other. Held over two weeks, you can explore the worlds of tech, film, music, and comedy with parties, award shows, screenings, and showcases.

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desert hearts festival

Desert Hearts Festival

March 31 - April 3

Los Coyotes Indian Reservation

It's all about the good vibes at Desert Hearts, an ethos-centric festival at the heart of the larger—what they call "dusty"—movement surrounding Burning Man.

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Euphoria Music & Camping Festival

April 6 - 9

Carson Creek Ranch

This multi-stage camping fest is held at one of the oldest existing ranches in Texas, minutes from downtown Austin. This year's lineup features Alesso, Chromeo, Wiz Khalifa, Pretty Lights, and more.


Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival

April 14 - 16; 21 - 23

Empire Polo Club

This year's Coachella lineup promises to be one of the best in years. Headliners were recently announced as Beyonce, Kendrick Lamar, and Radiohead. And c'mon, it's Coachella.

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New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

April 28 - May 7

New Orleans, LA

You won't find any EDM, raver boots, or camping here—the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is all about jazz, Louisiana culture, and Cajun cooking.

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   Nam-Chi Van

Lightning in a Bottle Arts & Music Festival

May 24 - 29

San Antonio Recreation Area

This unique festival has a culture that blends music, art, wellness, and sustainability. This year boasts an impressive lineup including Bassnectar, Bonobo, Rufus Du Sol, Jhene Aiko, and more.


Boston Calling

May 26 - 28

Harvard Athletic Complex

With a brand new location and an expanded schedule, this year's Boston Calling might have the most diverse spectrum of talent for a festival of its size, from Bon Iver and Solange, to The xx and Tool.


BottleRock Napa Valley

May 26 - 28

Napa Valley Expo

A festival which takes its food lineup as seriously as its music! Foo Fighters, Maroon 5, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers will headline, while the best food and drink from NorCal keeps you fueled.



May 26 - 28

Gorge Amphitheatre

There are few places better to spend Memorial Day Weekend than at Sasquatch and The Gorge, the festival's notoriously scenic setting.

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splash house music festival

Splash House Music Festival

June & August

Palm Springs, CA

Despite an increasingly standardized music festival model, Splash House has managed to balance a niche concept—a pool party music festival at Palm Springs hotels—with a mainstream audience.

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governors ball

Governors Ball Music Festival

June 2 - 4

Randall's Island

This NYC event is located in the midst of it all, in a takeover of Randall's Island. The 2017 lineup includes Chance the Rapper, Lorde, and Wu-Tang Clan.

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Northside Festival

June 7 - 11

Williamsburg and Greenpoint, Brooklyn

One part entrepreneurial seminar, one part interactive art show, one part hip alternative music festival: Northside Festival in Brooklyn brings all of the most exciting parts of Williamsburg together.


Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival

June 8 - 11

Manchester, Tennessee

If you like the big name acts at Coachella but want a more down-to-earth vibe, give Bonnaroo a try. The fest's motto is "radiate positivity" & it holds true. Music from U2, The Weeknd, The xx + more!

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Firefly Music Festival

June 15 - 18

The Woodlands of Dover, DE

An environmentally-minded, fan-curated music festival featuring a spectacular line-up every year, on-site camping, and a three-hour drive from NYC? Yes, please.


Mountain Jam

June 16 - 18

Hunter Mountain

Nestled in a ski resort in New York's beautiful Catskills, the Mountain Jam serves up 3 days of great food, classic music, and new friends for jam band fans every June.


What The Festival

June 16 - 19

Wolf Run Ranch, Oregon

Described as “summer camp for adults," you'll find yourself camping and jamming out in the Oregon forest by night and cooling off at the daily pool parties by day.


Eaux Claires

June 16 - 17

Eau Claire, WI

Co-curated by Justin Vernon of Bon Iver and Aaron Dessner of The National, this scenic Wisconsin experience is held along the banks of the Chippewa River and is a true celebration of music and art.


Wilco’s Solid Sound Festival

June 23 - 25


Happening only every other year, this fest is returning to the stunning MASS MoCA in 2017 for a weekend of music, comedy, art, camping and more.



June 28 - July 2; July 4 – 9

Henry Maier Festival Park in Milwaukee, WI

2017 marks the 50th year of Summerfest, the verified "World's Largest Music Festival." With 11 stages, hundreds of diverse acts, and 900,000 attendees, it's definitely one for your bucket list.


San Francisco Oysterfest Music Festival

July 1

Sharon Meadow

While the musical lineup hasn’t been announced yet, past performers at this fest have included Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Chromeo, & more. The true headliners, however, are the oysters.

FYF fest
   FYF Fest

FYF Fest

July 22 - 23

Exposition Park

Between FYF Fest's new July date and history of nabbing both Frank Ocean, and The Strokes, we don't even need to see FYF Fest's 2017 lineup to call it as one of the must-catch festivals of the year.

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July 28 - 30

Randall's Island

If headliners Frank Ocean, Tame Impala, and Nine Inch Nails are any hint of what's to come, the second year of Panorama, toted as the East Coast's answer to Coachella, is going to be killer.


Afropunk Festival Brooklyn

August 26 - 27

Commodore Barry Park

Held annually in Fort Greene, Brooklyn for over a decade, Afropunk is a two-day music festival highlighting Black artistry that has become an international cultural movement. Don't miss this.



August 3 - 7

Grant Park, Chicago

One of America's best music festivals pops up right in the middle of Chicago. Lollapalooza brings 160,000+ people together each year for big-name bands from nearly every genre, from Kid Cudi to MGMT.


Outside Lands

August 11 - 13

Golden Gate Park, San Francisco

Wine Lands, Cheese Lands, Choco Lands, and Beer Lands, all reside WITHIN Outside Lands. So yeah, it's more than just a music festival boasting past acts like Elton John, The Killers, Kanye, & more.

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   Hawaii Savvy

Burning Man

August 27 - September 4

Black Rock Desert, Nevada

A temporary, self-sufficient community is created in the Nevada desert every year as an escape for city-dwellers around the world. Burning Man is more than just a festival—it's a lifestyle.


Electric Zoo

September 1 - 3

Randall's Island

Tens of thousands of neon-clothed Electronic music lovers descend on NYC's Electric Zoo each year. In 2017, they'll turn Randall's Island into a colorful, bass-pumping mecca in the middle of the city.

Kaaboo Del Mar


September 15 - 17

Del Mar Fairgrounds

KAABOO Del Mar is the ideal balance of upscale amenities, great bands, and classic San Diego charm; the 360-degree experience includes art, music, comedy, and chef-driven food.


The Fest


Gainesville, Florida

The punk scene drives down and takes over Gainesville, FL every late October for this cult-favorite festival, featuring the biggest punk and indie names (and notorious unofficial basement shows).


Austin City Limits Festival

October 6 - 15

Zilker Park, Austin

This festival has gotten so huge over the years that they had to add a second weekend! Held in one of this country's most famed music cities, ACL Festival always has a diverse–and incredible–lineup.

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SnowGlobe Music Festival

December 12 - January 1

South Lake Tahoe

Make your NYE 2018 plans, now! Break out your best snow attire for "literally and figuratively the chillest festival ever." Past acts have included ODESZA, The Chainsmokers, and G-Eazy.

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  1. Barry Rivers

    Great story on the Best 20 USA Festival and no offense intended BUT are you aware of the Maui Film Festival celebrating its 18th annual incarnation from June 21-25, 2017. indieWIRE, one of the most highly regarded outlets in the world of film and film festival coverage wrote: “”The Maui Film Festival at Wailea is a ‘jewel-box’ festival – able to handle anything without becoming unwieldy or impersonal. Flawlessly planned. Watch for even greater things to come. The national press is taking notice, with the Hollywood Reporter, Variety, LA Times, CNN, E!, Entertainment Tonight and Vanity Fair all reporting on its goings-on.” Just thought it was worth reaching out to you on the chance the Maui Film Festival might be of interest to your readers.

  2. I love Euphoria… but Electric Forest is definitely just a bigger, better version. There’s nothing objective there. Electric Forest is what Euphoria should be aspiring to be like.

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