Band playing at Gahanna’s Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival (photo by James D. Decamp)

The Sweet Sounds of Gahanna’s Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival

Head to the Columbus suburb June 14 through 16 to check out this popular three-day music festival, now in its 25th year.

The wail of bluesy guitars and bright horns fill four blocks of the Columbus suburb of Gahanna each year during the Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival. Celebrating its 25th year in 2024, the event draws up to 25,000 summer visitors to the city’s Creekside District, and the festival has grown into a destination music event known beyond central Ohio.

Over the course of its three days, the festival hosts more than 30 acts across three stages: a jazz stage where attendees can see the likes of New York City’s horn-driven Huntertones, a blues stage that hosts acts such as Lil’ Ed & the Blues Imperials (a Chicago band that has been together for over 30 years) and a community stage for local musicians.

“People [have] come to expect a high level of musician entertainment, and for a relatively inexpensive ticket price, you can see multiple bands and some bands you didn’t even know existed,” says Lori Kappes, director of the Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival.

Other acts on the 2024 bill include Jason Ricci & the Bad Kind, Urban Jazz Coalition, Dave Powers Trio, MojoFlo, Sammy DeLeon y Su Orquesta, Midwest Modern Jazz Quartet, Blue Spectrum and many more. While music is the focus, works for sale by local artisans complete the festival feel, as does the wealth of food and drink available. Gahanna’s Creekside District is brimming with locally owned restaurants and bars.

The diverse mix of music draws out-of-towners, many of whom were not previously familiar with the community, according to Kappes.

“A lot of people who attend the festival are not from Gahanna,” she says. “Last year we had people from 27 different states and pretty much every city around Ohio.” 

For more information, visit