What: Festival at the Switchyard 
When: November 6, from 11 AM to 10 PM
Where: Historic Downtown Carrollton

Admission: FREE

(It is advised to park and the DART Green Line to the Downtown Carrollton Station. Parking will be limited, so plan accordingly.)

Finally, Festival at the Switchyard is returning to Carrollton! Why is this such a big deal? It’s only one of the biggest, family-friendly, FREE music festivals around.

Still not convinced? Here are the 10 reasons why Festival at the Switchyard is the can’t-miss event this weekend:

Switchyard is free to attend

The best part of all. Granted, if you choose to shop around or grab a bite at the awesome local vendors (more on them momentarily!), you’ll have to spend a few bucks. But there is no admission for you or any of your guests or family you bring along!

There’s something for everybody at Switchyard

The Festival at the Switchyard in Carrollton is geared toward everyone from kids to adults… music-lovers to foodies… devoted concert-goers, to folks there for the perfect “later-gram” picture. As you will learn going through this list, the activities for kids, adults and everyone in between are all-inclusive.

The location – Downtown Carrollton is adorable!

A hidden gem of Collin county downtown area, Historic Downtown Carrollton has treasures hiding in every corner. Dining spans Lemme Coffee Company to Babe’s Chicken Dinner House to Beth Marie’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream. Shopping is even more varied (check out the pink Vintage House!), still adhering to that old-time hometown vibe.

Be sure to explore a little while you’re here, and come back for the Square Deal Day events throughout the year!

experience carrollton in a whole new way at the town's premier event, the festival at the switchyard.
Experience carrollton in a whole new way at the town’s premier event, the festival at the switchyard. | courtesy of the city of carrollton

Concerts by amazing acts like Blue October, Dishwalla

Need an old-fashioned Beatles tribute? JPGR: A Beatles Tribute will come together and deliver. 

Craving country? Obviously, you’re in Texas! Shameless plans to tap into some classic Garth Brooks tune like “Friends in Low Places” and “The Dance.”

Austin-based Tomar and the FCs will bring the soul, and Dishwalla will scratch your alt rock itch. And we can’t forget rock band Blue October, giving us hits like “Into The Ocean.”

The main stage isn’t the only place you’ll find talent; you’ll also get to enjoy performances from local groups. From Newman Smith High School Troyanns Drill Team wow’-ing us with their dance routines, to the non-profit Korean American Youth Artists of Texas (founded by teens!) celebrating Korean culture through artistry-driven performances.

You’ll get an exciting martial arts demonstration from Sidekicks Martial Arts, and a tap dance routine from premier senior tap dance group, the Class Act Tap Company.

Whew, what a line-up! But there’s a lot more where that came from… and we’re not going to spoil it!

The children’s events – circus performance, juggling, stunt show

At 12:30 p.m. in the Plaza Arts Center, kids of all ages can enjoy local acts such as the Lone Star Circus, or Guinness World Record holder David Slick’s juggling. There’s even a stunt man, Shell Higgins (he was on America’s Got Talent!), performing death-defying feats such as sword swallow and a strait-jacket escape from a ladder.

Fun for big kids (you too, adults!) – bungee trampolines, zip line, carnival games

There’s more than music at this festival! Get ready for bungee trampolines, a zip line, and a giant slide to thrill you. Did we mention the carnival games? Or the caricature drawings?

And remember — it’s all free!

the festival at the switchyard in carrollton is back after skipping a year... and it's going to be better than ever.
The festival at the switchyard in carrollton is back after skipping a year… and it’s going to be better than ever. | courtesy of the city of carrollton

Local artisan booths to shop at

There will be five sections of vendors, combining food, shopping and other booths. As far as shopping, you can expect local artisans such as Cate’s Concepts (her wooden earrings are gorgeous), and One Rose Designs (her hand-painted decor — also gorgeous). Looking for a vintage record for that music-lover in your life? NTX Vinyl will be waiting with crates-galore to dig through.

All of the food vendors

Here’s where it gets good. Food vendors for Festival at the Switchyard include Ms. Bettie’s Gumbo: seafood gumbo, Nate’s BBQ, La Casita, Dosey Dough and HTeaO iced tea to wash it all down. That’s all just barely scratching the surface of the full food vendor list, so come hungry!

A beer garden

Need we say more?

Win a custom guitar!

Win a custom Festival at the Switchyard Guitar! Just follow the steps below and enter by Friday, Nov. 5 by 11:59 pm for a chance to win this cool souvenir:

  1. FOLLOW the festival’s Facebook page or Twitter page
  2. LIKE the pinned Facebook or Twitter post about the contest and COMMENT with your favorite Dishwalla or Blue October song lyrics.

Looking for more things to do?

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Jordan Jarrett

Jordan is the digital manager at Local Profile. She creates digital, print and social content. Her passion is profiling people and their experiences, connecting community through authentic narrative.