Excited JMU college students outside jumping Harrisonburg

Block Party in the ‘Burg

Saturday, August 27, 2022 from 2:30 – 4:30 PM 

Welcome to Harrisonburg, JMU Class of 2026! We are excited to welcome you to your home away from home. Check below for a list of activities you’ll find as you explore downtown Harrisonburg with us Saturday, August 27. Keep an eye out for signs to help you navigate around town – or find us at the Info Booth right on Court Square. We will show you the way!

Plus, check our recommendations for some of the best businesses to follow on Instagram – and don’t forget to follow us (Instagram – @downtownharrisonburg, TikTok – @downtownharrisonburg) for news, announcements, and events happening downtown all year round!

Proud Presenter:

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Featured Activities

  • Leave Your Mark on Downtown – Join in on the annual tradition of leaving your handprint on the mural at OASIS Fine Art & Craft!
  • Tie-Dye Activities – Customize your own scrunchies, bandanas, and pencil cases using tie dye!
  • Purple and Gold Airbrush Tattoos – Show your school spirit with FREE temporary airbrush tattoos
  • FREE Arcade Games – Test out your arcade game skills at Ruby’s Arcade!


All activities are FREE unless otherwise noted.

withsimplicity lipstick


Make sure to check out these businesses and booths for giveaways and free samples!



Leave Your Mark on Downtown

OASIS Fine Art & Craft

Join in on the annual tradition of leaving your handprint on the mural at OASIS Fine Art & Craft!

Drag Queen Meet and Greet

Court Square

Meet some drag queen royalty at this pop-up meet and greet with Rhinestone Productions.

Buttons and Polaroid Photos with Friendly City Safe Space

Court Square (near Rhinestone Productions)

Take a photo to remember your time at Block Party and a button for your backpack! Don’t forget to check out the cool upcoming events happening at the Friendly City Safe Space.

Tie-Dye Activities

Court Square

Customize your own scrunchies, bandanas, and pencil cases using tie dye!


Learn something new! Check out these businesses and booths for some fun, interactive demonstrations:

DIY Worry Dolls

Friendly City Food Co-Op Booth on Court Square

Make your own worry doll and grab a snack at this activity with the Friendly City Food Co-Op!

Crazy Community Quilt Squares

Virginia Quilt Museum

Draw your own design on a quilt square to be part of the 2022 Community Crazy quilt. Fabric paint, markers, and all of the supplies needed will be provided by the Virginia Quilt Museum.

Airbrushed Tattoos

Court Square

Show your JMU spirit with FREE purple and gold airbrushed tattoos from Air Illusions!

Henna Tattoos

Court Square – under tree

Find SKS Artworks to get a taste of Henna art!



  • Camelbak Eddy Water Bottles for $10 at Walkabout Outfitter
  • $5 matinee of Abbott and Costello’s “Jack and the Beanstalk” at Court Square Theater plus a FREE small popcorn to students who show their ID when purchasing movie tickets
  • 50% off 1 Item at withSimplicity with JAC Card to celebrate their grand re-opening!

More Deals & Steals!

Check out the Downtown Harrisonburg Student Guide for more discounts! 

Plus, stop by the HDR Info Booth on Court Square to pick up your Student Discount Cheat Sheet.

Tarot Card Readings

Court Square Booth

Want to know what the upcoming semester holds? Get a glimpse into the future with a free tarot card reading.

Rosie Co. Photobooth

Court Square Booth

Capture the moment with a free photo booth photo from Rosie Co.! Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook to download your digital copy.

The Great Tobini

Roaming Main Street Court Square

Prepare to be amazed! Find Tobini the street magician during Block Party!

FREE Arcade Games

Ruby’s Arcade – 165 S Main St

Try out the games at Ruby’s Arcade, including new video arcade games!

Asbury Open House

Asbury United Methodist Church

Enjoy free snow cones and popcorn, lawn games, building tours and community connection opportunities.

Harrisonburg Baptist Open House

Harrisonburg Baptist Church

Pick up a water bottle, and enjoy Inflatables and lawn games on the church lawn.

First Presbyterian Church Open House

First Presbyterian Church

Play a game of gaga ball, snag a free “Go Dukes” purple frisbee, and enjoy snowcones, and a live band in the courtyard.


Check out the booths from these local vendors:

Food for Sale

Merchandise for Sale

Games and Activities


  • iHeartRadio Station Van
  • MacRock
  • Harrisonburg Radio Group Station Van





30 Downtown Businesses to Follow on Instagram & TikTok:
  1. downtownharrisonburg: First things first, follow us (Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance) to stay up to date on everything going on downtown. We are on Instagram and are getting started on TikTok 🙂
  2. Heritage Bakery & Cafe: This cozy, french-inspired bakery & cafe posts images of their pastry case and special orders daily. Even if you don’t have the biggest sweet tooth, their feed is objectively beautiful.
  3. withSimplicity: These aren’t your mom’s sugar scrubs. Follow this local clean beauty business for cruelty and toxin-free skincare and cosmetics, plus self care tips and tricks.
  4. The Yellow Button: YB’s ‘lay-flats’ are reason enough to follow. They’re great outfit inspiration, plus their staff host regular try-on in stories so you can see how pieces look on different body types.
  5. Magpie Diner: It’s tough to get a table at Magpie, and it’s not hard to see why! Follow them for pictures of fresh breads, pastries and weekly menu items – and check out their stories to see what everyone else is having for breakfast.
  6. GiddyUp Courier: You don’t have to leave campus to eat downtown! Order on the app, and the fine folks at Giddyup will deliver on their bikes.
  7. The Lady Jane Shop: Inspired by Jane Austin, the Lady Jane is a go-to for greeting cards, decor, and local art (over 50+ local artisans have a place at Lady Jane!). Plus, the owner, Sara, might just be the sweetest person on the planet.
  8. Branch’s Soft Serve Etc.: Creamy ice cream and decadent desserts are what you’ll find at this food truck parked right on Main Street! Follow them for rotating flavors that update every Tuesday and mouthwatering pictures of sweet treats.
  9. Agora Market: Agora Downtown Market is a unique community of small business all operating under one roof. We suggest you follow each business individually, but the Agora account is beautifully curated and always keeps us up to date.
  10. Lola’s Deli: Three words. GIANT. BEAUTIFUL. SANDWICHES. Every day brings a new daily special, and every day, we are tempted.
  11. The Golden Pony: A great place to grab vegan and vegetarian food, but also one of the best venues to see live music downtown. Follow the Pony for upcoming shows and weekly specials.
  12. Black Sheep Coffee: Coffee, tea, breakfast and lunch made in-house, comfortable, living-room feel. Follow them for funny (and informative) content.
  13. Urgie’s Cheesesteaks: Two Philadelphia brothers with one mission – to deliver an authentic philly cheesesteak to your pie hole.
  14. Jack Brown’s/Billy Jack’s: known to seasoned residents as “Jacktown” follow both of these beloved restaurants for weekly specials and promotions, plus delectable burger pics.
  15. Wonder: The only place downtown to you can buy a skateboard, but they also have some pretty *cool* apparel.
  16. Ruby’s Arcade: Split a pizza with friends and play some ping pong, pool, or bowl with tiny bowling balls (“duckpin bowling” for the uninitiated).
  17. Walkabout Outfitter: Everyone needs a hammock to lay in on the Quad. Stock up on all your outdoor gear needs at Walkabout.
  18. Clementine Cafe: Another great live music venue downtown! And they have one of the best patios for outdoor dining. Plus, make sure to check them out on TikTok for more fun behind-the-scenes footage!
  19. Coffee Hound: Great coffee and lots of room to spread out and study. And they are dog-friendly so you’ll be sure to see some fuzzy faces too!
  20. Capital Ale House: Excellent burgers and appetizers. Plus, they just launched their new app and rewards program!
  21. Bella Luna Pizza/Bella Gelato: Put on some nicer duds and eat some really A+ pizza and pasta. Follow your meal with a rotating flavor menu of gelato located right across the street.
  22. Mashita: This korean-inspired food truck just recently opened a brick and mortar downtown. Follow them for weekly specials – and the offer delivery.
  23. Beyond: Downtown’s sushi and asian fusion restaurant. Grab a seat on their patio that overlooks Blacks Run.
  24. Kline’s Dairy Bar: You have to follow Kline’s to stay current on the flavor of the week. It might be sacrilegious not to.
  25. OASIS Fine Art & Craft: Are you an art lover? Follow OASIS to stay updated with the local cooperative art scene including upcoming shows, new merchandise, and more!
  26. DART Resale & Trade: Known for its curated collection of secondhand clothes, DART’s Instagram page is great to keep tabs on what is new in stock and what is in demand for Trade-in Tuesdays!
  27. Gamer Oasis: Into video games, tabletop games, nerd culture, collectibles and more? Follow Gamer Oasis to keep up to date on tournaments and events, and stop in to browse their large collection of used games and gear from your favorite fandoms.
  28. Great.full Goods: Great.full Goods has everything you need to start your zero-waste journey. Follow this account for informative and fun video tips on how to live more sustainably and stay in the know about upcoming subscription boxes and other inventory!
  29. Merge Coffee Company: Another beloved coffee spot in the ‘burg, Merge Coffee has you covered for caffeine and an airy study space. Plus they now have BACON STUFFED WAFFLES! Need we say more?
  30. Village Juice and Kitchen: Want some beautiful vegetarian and vegan-friendly dishes to grace your feed? Not only is Village Juice and Kitchen the perfect chill atmosphere to grab a healthy meal, but your plate will be Instagram-worthy too!


Students will walk north from campus along S. Main Street beginning at 2:00 PM. While there will be higher pedestrian activity downtown, parking will be ample and available. Shoppers and diners are encouraged to access parking decks and the municipal parking lot via S. Liberty and Mason Streets.

Official street closures for Block Party activities will be as follows:

11:00 AM – 5:30 PM

  • Parking around Court Square will be prohibited. All parking decks and the municipal lot by Turner Pavilion will remain open.

  • Parking in the SBC/Jimmy Madison’s parking lot will be prohibited.

12:00 PM – 5:30 PM

  • The south, west, and north sections of Court Square will be closed for event set-up and activities.
  • Parking in the City Hall parking lot is prohibited. All parking decks and the municipal lot by Turner Pavilion will remain open.

1:00 PM – 5:30 PM

  • Both lanes of Main Street from Martin Luther King Way to Rock Street will be closed.
  • Court Square will be closed.
  • All parking decks and the municipal lot by Turner Pavilion will remain open.

Reopening Streets

  • Main Street will reopen around 5:30 PM, depending on crowd levels, at the discretion of HPD and Public Works.


  • The Municipal Parking Lot by Turner Pavilion will be open. It will be easily accessible from S. Liberty Street. No event-related activities will be held at the Pavilion.
  • The Water Street and Elizabeth Street parking decks will be open and accessible from S. Liberty Street and Mason Street respectively. Upper and lower levels of both parking decks will be open to the public.
  • All 4-hour parking downtown is always free. Spaces reserved for permit holders become free public parking on weekends and holidays and, after 5:00 PM, on weekdays. Free parking is located throughout downtown and labeled with signs. Please check road closures that will prohibit street parking at those locations.


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