The summer solstice marks the onset of summer at the time of the longest day. This solstice occurs when the earth tilts the maximum toward the sun. Therefore, the sun is at its highest point of elevation with a noontime position that changes a little bit for several days before and after the solstice.

For many of us, the summer solstice occurs without knowing, but places around the world, like Anchorage, celebrate this type of astronomic event. During the summer solstice, Anchorage gets 22 hours of daylight that they use to celebrate. They have multiple small classic events, several outdoor activities like biking, hiking, and even concerts and festivals to take full advantage of the midnight sun.

Anchorage Downton’s turns into a massive celebration during the Solstice thanks to its partnership with the Summer Solstice festivities. Performances and activities are spread all over Town Square Park, Peratrovich Park, and E and G streets, so the city is transformed into a party with artists and musicians performing all around town for everyone to enjoy.

Ship Creek hosts the Slam’n Slam’n Derby just steps from the downtown streets for passionate anglers hoping to catch the biggest salmon under the midnight sun. It doesn’t take a master angler to win this contest; Hooking the biggest king salmon or a specially tagged fish will win you cash or new gear. Besides the Slam’n Slam’n Derby, the Anchorage Glacier Pilots have a summer baseball schedule filled with night games at the seventh-inning stretch after 7 pm.

Besides the many recreational activities available during this festival, you can also enjoy a cookout or a parade. You can also watch the service members from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson team up and compete in strength, agility, and precision contests. The ‘Hero Games’ is also available and open for athletic first responders in the fire department, military, coast guard, and police department to participate.

Most of the activities take place on Town Square and Fourth Avenue. Downtown is filled with live music, food trucks, vendors, a -chalk- art gallery, bouncy houses, a petting zoo, beer gardens, and hip-hop dance performances.