For 2024 Capital Lakefair, Downtown Olympia Gets Ready to Rock at Charlie’s Bar & Grill

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As if summer’s long days and balmy nights weren’t jam-packed enough, it’s almost time for Capital Lakefair week. Running from July 17 to 21, 2024, downtown Olympia is transformed by the festive arrival of an all-ages carnival, food vendors, family-friendly entertainment, a car show and parade, craft booths and fireworks. While you’re out exploring, head over to Charlie’s Bar & Grill at 620 4th Avenue for concerts, drinks, dancing and fun.

Taking center stage in 2024 will be the rockin’ fan favorites Nite Wave and Hell’s Belles. Tickets are $25 and going fast so make sure to get yours now. Then start limbering up for the dance floor, air guitar, pulled pork nachos and so much more.

chicken strips, cheese curds and french fries with ketchup pictured above a photo of the inside seating area at Charlie's Bar & Grill with wood tables and chairs and tv screens on the wall
During Lakefair week, head to downtown Olympia’s Charlie’s Bar & Grill for back-to-back nights of rockin’ rock concerts and mouthwatering meals. Photo courtesy; Charlie’s Bar & Grill

In Downtown Olympia, Charlie’s Bar & Grill is a Capital Lakefair Classic

Charlie’s Bar & Grill has been hosting Lakefair concerts for the last decade, explains Sarah Johnson, social media manager. She says doing so is a proud tradition instituted by local owners who enjoy supporting fellow local businesses and artists.

During these shows, which take place on stage in the back parking lot, there is a bar set up outside for drinks, but customers can still enjoy the full menu inside as well. Come early and eat before the music starts or cool off after the show with a frosty beer.

The restaurant serves lighter fare like hand-crafted sliders – topped with bacon jam and melted Cambozola cheese – as well as potato skins, a veggie platter, quesadillas and chicken wings. Extra hungry? Try one of their hearty sit-down items. The fish and chips are made with fresh halibut or cod and they also offer entrée salads, wraps, sandwiches, grinders, burgers and pizza-style flatbreads.

Charlie’s Bar & Grill is locally owned and has hosted Lakefair concerts for the past decade. The entire team loves supporting local musicians, fellow businesses, and the bustling downtown music scene. Photo courtesy; Charlie’s Bar & Grill

Food + Music + Summer = Fun at Charlie’s Bar & Grill

Whether you’re new to Charlie’s, a regular visitor or practically part of the family, these Capital Lakefair nights are not to be missed. Donny Giffin, lead bartender, says he loves working concerts. “It brings so many people from around the community,” he adds. “People you may not have seen in a while, even people from other states come for the shows. You can’t beat live music. I love bartending and when you get to do it with live bands performing, there’s nothing better.”

Griffin’s personal favorite menu item is the chicken bacon club, loaded with fresh avocado and chipotle mayo.

“The shows at Charlies Lakefair weekend are a must see,” says Griffin. “Every year is a ton of fun with great food, great drinks and great people. Once you’ve been, you will come back for every show.”

On Stage Ring in the Fun with the Hell’s Belles on Friday, July 19

It’s easy to dance off your dinner or Capital Lakefair treats with two headlining shows during the carnival fun. Hell’s Belles, with opener On The Rocks, take the stage on Friday, July 19.

On The Rocks kicks off at 7 p.m. with iconic classic rock anthems brought to life. At 8:30 p.m., Hell’s Belles – an all-female AC/DC tribute band – will pay homage to the 80’s originals the best way possible: energy, passion and heavy metal magic. Endorsed by Angus Young himself in Blender Magazine, Hell’s Belles are the closest one can get without actually moving to Australia and joining AC/DC’s road crew.

Hell’s Belles are committed, ferocious, meticulous women rock musicians delivering authentic AC/DC to the unbelievably supportive and wicked awesome fans. All day and all night long, all over the world, pitch perfect AC/ DC is delivered with a highly charged vigor that’s second to none.

Hells Belle's performing on-stage
On Friday, July 19, 2024, get ready to rock with Hells Belle’s, an all-female AC/DC tribute band that’s been endorsed the the originals. Photo courtesy: Hells Belle’s

But Save Room – and Energy – for the Nite Wave Party on Saturday, July 20

The next night, head back to Charlie’s for a Nite Wave Party to remember. With almost 15 years of performing together, Nite Wave brings 1980’s New Wave music to the forefront. They’ve opened for Billy Idol and shared the stage with Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Jane Wiedlin of The Go-Go’s, Clive Farrington of When in Rome, Marty Jourard of The Motels and Multi-Platinum selling artist Tiffany.

Nite Wave shows cover everything from Prince to Depeche Mode, Duran Duran to INXS. They’ve also used their platform to raise more than $17,000 for Northwest Harvest and the American Red Cross. They play at Charlie’s Bar & Grill from 9 p.m. until 12 a.m. on Saturday, July 20.

Nite Wave posing for a photo in white shirts
Saturday, July 20, 2024, it’s time for a Nite Wave Party. They bring to life the music of everyone from Prince to Depeche Mode, Duran Duran to INXS, all on Charlie’s outdoor stage. Photo courtesy: Nite Wave

Dance and Sing, Rock and Roll, Eat and Drink at Charlie’s Bar & Grill

Share the concert link with family, friends, coworkers and neighbors and get ready for a night (or two!) on the town. While online buying tickets, check out Charlie’s events calendar and don’t forget to clear your schedule for regulars like Taco Tuesday.

Or head over to their sister site The Brick on Trosper. With a menu including breakfast and brunch items like eggs benedict and chicken-fried steak, they also offer snacks, salads, wraps, sandwiches, grinders, burgers, pasta, steak, calzones, pizza and Happy Hour deals.

With a 100+ year history, Charlie’s Bar & Grill is a local landmark. Capital Lakefair, though barely 75 years old, is another not-to-be-missed destination with its welcoming atmosphere of all-ages fun. Celebrate both under the glorious summer sun this July.

Charlie’s Bar & Grill
620 4th Avenue, Olympia

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