One of the best things about fall? You’re never pressed for fun things to do, be it something as simple as a nature walk or adventurous as a foliage train ride. With tidings of cooler temps and cozy dinners also comes an influx of autumn-inspired events across the country, all dedicated to celebrating the season. Whether you frequent an October festival close to home and want to branch out, we’ve rounded up the best fall festivals happening across America. No matter which locale(s) you choose, prepare to immerse yourself in local foods, traditions, and cultures.
1.Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta
Where: Santa Fe, New Mexico
When: September 22-26, 2021
What to expect: This year’s 30th-anniversary celebration features special dinners at area wineries, cooking demos, and, of course, a grand tasting.
2. The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze
new york, united states
visitors are seen inside a tunnel made of pumpkins at the great jack lantern blaze spectacle which features more than 5,000 hand-carved, illuminated pumpkins created by professional artists during Halloween season in croton on Hudson village of new york city.
Where: Croton-on-Hudson, New York
When: September 17-October 31; November 3-7, 10-14, 18-21, 2021
What to Expect: Wander the grounds of historic Van Cortlandt Manor to take in the gorgeous designs created from more than 7,000 jack-o’-lanterns.
3. West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta
Where: Tualatin, Oregon
When: October 16, 2021
What to expect: Costumed racers in hollowed-out, thousand-pound pumpkins competing in a series of wacky water events. Started in 2004 by the Pacific Giant Vegetable Growers who wanted to do a paddle with a handful of gigantic gourds, the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta on the Lake at Tualatin Commons now attracts thousands of spectators each year.
4. Natchez Balloon Festival
Where: Natchez, Mississippi
When: October 15-17, 2021
What to Expect: A family-friendly event with hot air balloons, arts and crafts, live music, and rides, all set against Rosalie Mansion’s high bluffs above the Mississippi River.
5. National Apple Harvest Festival
Where: Arendtsville, Pennsylvania
When: October 2-3 and 9-10, 2021
What to expect: This festival is a total dream come true for anyone who loves apple picking season. You’ll find booth after booth of apple treats, as well as festival fun like hayrides, puppet shows, and a petting zoo.