Where to be on the summer solstice in Alaska

KTUU's 70 years of broadcasting
Published: Jun. 20, 2023 at 3:29 PM AKDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The longest day of the year is here and fun events and activities are plenty in the 49th state.

The summer solstice takes on extra meaning in Alaska, which is much further north than the other 49 states and therefore receives the most daylight in summer months — in fact, all regions north of the Arctic Circle get a full 24 hours of daylight!

So, what is there to do this week and weekend in Alaska? Here are a few options:


The state’s largest city is not short on stuff to do on Wednesday and this weekend.

  • 2023 Summer Solstice Celebration — June 24, noon to 5 p.m. in Downtown Anchorage: Hosted by the Anchorage Downtown Partnership, Ltd., the 20th annual festival will include music, food, drinks, and activities for almost all age ranges, including 3-on-3 basketball, an axe-throwing competition, a rock climbing wall, a petting zoo, and a robotic bucking salmon! Location: Fourth Avenue between E and G Streets, and G Street between Third and Fifth Avenues.
  • Summer Solstice Flattop hike — June 21, 6 p.m.: This annual hike takes adventurers up Anchorage’s most popular peak lining the Chugach Front Range. The trail picks up about 1,250 feet of elevation and treats hikers to spectacular views (if clear) at 3,500 feet above the Anchorage Bowl. Warning: Be prepared and wear durable hiking shoes and bring water!
  • Hilltop Summer Solstice Party — June 21, 3 p.m. to midnight at Hilltop Ski Area: The party will feature live music, a DJ, multiple food trucks, a strider bike race for kids, scenic chair lift rides and more!
  • Inaugural Solstice Open House — June 21, noon to 8 p.m. at the Hotel Captain Cook on West Fifth Avenue: Find your inner art enthusiast with the Elaine S. Baker art gallery. Art class signups are also available.
  • Stories at the Cemetery — June 21, 6 to 8 p.m. at Anchorage Memorial Park Cemetery at Seventh Avenue and Cordova Street: Enjoy (or be frightened) by a guided walk through Anchorage’s oldest cemetery while hearing tales of some of the most notorious pioneers who settled in the area over 100 years ago.
  • Puddle of Mudd featuring Hinder — June 24, 5:30 to 11 p.m. in Downtown: The rock band from the Kansas City area will treat folks to a concert with special guest Hinder on Saturday at F Street and Sixth Avenue. Tickets start at $70.
  • Summer Solstice Block Party — June 21, 4:30 to 9 p.m.: Barbecue, live music, lawn games, and an outside bar can be enjoyed by all ages 21 and up at the Inlet Pubhouse off West 12th Avenue. Entertainers include Danger & Diva from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., followed by Roland Roberts from 7 to 9 p.m.
  • Paint Nite: Summer Solstice — June 21, 6 p.m.: Hosted at the Williwaw Social on F Street, this age 21+ event will be held in the Speakeasy, and organizers say to arrive 15 to 30 minutes early. Supplies will be provided. $35 to attend.
  • Solstice Poetry Gathering — June 21, 7 to 9 p.m.: Come enjoy hearing beautiful words or share some of your own at Ruth Arcand Park off Abbott Road. Free, but donations suggested.


  • 118th Midnight Sun Game — June 21, 10 p.m. at Growden Field: Enjoy a true baseball bucket list tradition in the Golden Heart City as college-level players from around the country play under the midnight sun. Gates open at 8 p.m. and first pitch is at 10 p.m. as the Michigan Monarchs take on the Fairbanks Goldpanners without artificial lighting!
  • 41st Midnight Sun Festival — June 24, noon to midnight in Downtown Fairbanks: The city of Fairbanks celebrates almost 22 hours of daylight on Saturday with hours of entertainment along First and Second Avenues. Food and drinks are available, as well as shopping vendors, crafts, and live entertainment.
  • Midnight Sun Run — June 24, 10 p.m. at UAF Patty Center: This annual 10-kilometer race features all walks of life: from runners competing for speed to those just looking to have a good time. The race starts Saturday night on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus and covers 10K (6.2 miles) of ground.


  • Solstice Bonfire — June 21, 6:30 p.m. at Skater’s Cabin. A solstice bonfire will be held at Skater’s Cabin with s’mores provided. Admission is free.


  • Red Bull Solstice Scramble — June 24: Get your thrills watching racers from the Red Bull Scramble Series National Championship competing on challenging terrain. Rally SXS class vehicles are side-by-side off-road vehicles using turbocharged engines, as well as non-aspirated engines.


  • Solstice Bonfire — June 21, 7 p.m.: Come join the residents of Seward as the town celebrates the longest day of the year with a bonfire celebration!


  • Solstice Festival — June 21 all day at the Homer Harbor by the cruise ship dock: Hosted by the Homer Chamber of Commerce, this event runs through the afternoon and into the evening with live music, a deckhand skills competition, and food trucks and vendors.