Founded in 1971, the granddaddy of all Northwest festivals boasts over a dozen stages and hundreds of performances, not all of them musical. Over three days, highlights will include oldies acts (Hall & Oates!), ’80s college rocker Kristin Hersh, gospel legend Mavis Staples, The Presidents of the United States of America, Minus the Bear, rapper Wiz Khalifa, the Butthole Surfers, Truckasaurus, local hip-hop star Macklemore, and too many others to mention. If music’s not your thing, there’s near-continuous entertainment at the One Reel Film Festival (in SIFF Cinema, beneath McCaw Hall), where short films are arranged into themed blocks. Also indoors and out of the sun are visual arts exhibits, many them interactive, over at the Seattle Center Pavilion (by the skateboard park). Top comedians including Eugene Mirman will be performing regular sets at the Vera Project, Leo K. Theatre (Seattle Rep), and Intiman. There, too, you’ll see local funnymen John Keister and Emmett Montgomery. Several local theater companies will also be conducting short performances in the Center House Theatre. Food stands abound, and adults can also enjoy a beer garden. Parking and traffic, as always, will be a nightmare, so consider walking, biking, or taking the bus to Seattle Center. And look for our on-the-scene coverage of Bumbershoot all weekend long on our Reverb blog. T. BOND

Sept. 3-5, 2011