Music has always been part of the culture of the south and Gadsden adds to that culture with the Gadsden Riverfest. The Riverfest offers Gadsden locals a panoply of bands and activities, ranging from live music through dance parties to a boat-decorating contest. Local breweries also bring their wares to the Riverfest Pub, making it a party no one wants to miss. Starting out in a mall parking lot in 1986 with no more than 750 attendees, Riverfest's expansion into the rip-roaring festival it is today shows what a blast locals and visitors alike have at this musical gathering.
Folks make sure to get downtown on the first Friday of every month for Gadsden's First Friday, a monthly celebration of music, fun, and classic cars. Lovingly maintained classic cars line the street on proud display while bands play up and down the street. City officials close off Broad Street for the evening as people dance, shop at the various downtown stores that keep their doors open late on First Friday and get delicious food at the food vendors and restaurants. Even if you just stop through Gadsden while traveling, you could do worse than stop by on First Friday.
Mary G. Hardin Center
The Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Arts is part of Gadsden's regard for the arts, providing museum-quality exhibits and then some to the community at large. Locals can visit the Center repeatedly without seeing the same thing twice as it has plenty to offer. Rotating art exhibits show visual arts from artists local, national, and international, live music shows can be seen in the Center's Courtyard Concert Series and dance performances are also shown. In addition to that, the Center offers art classes to the community so that locals can learn music and visual arts.