Popular music showcase returns after a two-year break

Female musicians will once again take over Wilmington as the Ladybug Music Festival, presented by Chase, returns to downtown on Friday, May 20.

The event began in 2012 as an inexpensive local alternative to the massive Firefly Festival that takes place annually in Dover. Today, Ladybug enjoys national acclaim as one of the preeminent showcases of female musicians.

More than 40 female (or female-identifying) acts will be featured, including all female bands, female-fronted bands, duos, and singer-songwriters of different genres. Sweet Lizzy Project, a Cuban-born, Nashville-based quintet that plays “electrifying big-stage pop-rock,” is this year’s headliner. Other top regional draws include The Upstarters, Laura Cheadle, The Black Coast and Sug Daniels.

“We are so excited to be able to produce The Ladybug Music Festival, the largest celebration of women in music, again after a two-year break,” says Gayle Dillman, event founder and owner of Gable Music Ventures. “Being able to offer this platform to over 40 female led bands from across the country, to perform and share their music, is extremely gratifying. To be able to hold this event in Wilmington and showcase LOMA demonstrates how the creative economy can work as an economic driver for so many of the small businesses we know and love.”

Performances will take place simultaneously from 5-10 p.m. in 10 venues — eight small businesses in the city’s LOMA District and two outdoor stages (300 block of Market St.; Humble Park on 4th & Shipley streets). Admission is free.

Other festival features include food trucks, retail shop sales and sidewalk vendors. Visit LadybugFestival.com