At last! October is soon to arrive and hopefully with it, cooler temps. One thing we’re sure of is that there is no shortage of fantastic Southern events taking place this month. No matter where you are in the South, one of these options isn’t too far away. Get in the car, enjoy an adventure and embrace this most magical time of year!
September 30 – October 31, 2016: Sloss Fright Furnace — Birmingham, AL
Are you ready to be scared this Halloween? Come out to Historic Sloss Furnaces in Birmingham, Alabama, to experience one of Ghost Hunters’ favorite haunts and one of the Fox Paranormal Team’s Scariest Places on Earth. Sloss Furnaces is known to be haunted by the thousands of workers who lost their lives due to accidents, explosions and perhaps even murder throughout the storied history of this Iron City landmark. Fright Furnace creates a terrifying experience that takes you into the deepest, darkest parts of the furnace. This event is not for the faint of heart, so ready yourself for a bone-chilling Halloween experience! Sloss Fright Furnace runs from Friday, September 30 to Monday, October 31 with shows beginning at 6 p.m. Tickets cost $20 per person Sundays through Thursdays and $25 Friday, Saturday and Halloween night! Learn more at frightfurnace.com.
Through October 31, 2016: ChattaBOOga — Chattanooga, TN
Throughout the entire month of October, you can stop by Chattanooga and get in the spooky spirit of the season. Venture into the chill-inducing haunted cavern, go on a ghost hunt throughout the city, take a haunted train ride, get lost in a 10-acre corn maze and more. There’s fun for every age group all month long! Learn more at chattanoogafun.com.
October 1 – 2, 2016: St. James Court Art Show — Louisville, KY
Get ready Louisville because it’s that time of year again. That’s right, it’s time for the St. James Court Art Show. This year marks the 60th year for the Old Louisville favorite and will run from Friday, September 30 through Sunday, October 2. You are sure to find something that strikes your fancy, as there are more than 750 artists from across the country gathered together displaying their crafts for this one weekend in Old Louisville. Hours are Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more at stjamescourtartshow.com.
October 7 – 9, 2016: Richmond Folk Festival — Richmond, VA
Enjoy an entertaining and enriching weekend on Richmond’s riverfront during the three-day Richmond Folk Festival. The line-up is diverse and features performers from all over the world — Brazil, Italy, Bulgaria — as well as plenty from right here in the United States. Live the folklife, enjoy some amazing food and immerse yourself in three days of motley festivities. Learn more at richmondfolkfestival.org.
October 7 – 9, 2016: Antiques at the Gardens — Birmingham, AL
This weekend-long event at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens features gorgeous wares from Southeastern vendors and designers, talented national tastemakers, events, parties, classes and seminars. This year’s Antiques at the Gardens also features StyleBlueprint’s very own panel of local tastemakers! Moderated by StyleBlueprint Birmingham Editor Lauren Helmer, the panel features Birmingham’s cutting-edge designers, architects and style trendsetters sharing their design inspiration and business insights. The panel is followed by a fabulous After Hours in the Gardens party with live music and pop-up shops, not to mention the Gala in the Gardens black-tie evening kicking off this wonderful annual fundraiser. Regionally and nationally known architects, interior designers and landscape designers will show off their creative talent through curated, themed vignettes and artists, jewelers and antiques vendors share their fabulous finds. The Antiques at the Gardens is the premier fundraiser for the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and raises money to benefit the inspiring educational programs and outreach initiatives of The Gardens. Tickets are $15 general admission for non-members; free for Birmingham Botanical Gardens members. Learn more at bbgardens.org.
October 13, 2016: 7th Annual Food Invasion — Montgomery, AL
Montgomery’s Hampstead community hosts its seventh annual Food Invasion benefit dinner with featured chef Anne Quatrano. The Atlanta-based, James Beard Award-winning chef will be whipping up a farm-to-table meal for guests and proceeds from the benefit go to the Hampstead Institute, a nonprofit that serves and supports educational and healthy food initiatives in the community. Tickets are $150 per person and can be purchased at hampsteadliving.com.
October 13 – November 6, 2016: Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular — Louisville, KY
The Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular is always a crowd favorite. This year’s event will be held at Iroquois Park through Sunday, November 6. There are 5,000 uniquely carved pumpkins lighting up the walking trail, which spans one-quarter mile that will be illuminated from dusk to 11 p.m. during the week (Sunday-Thursday) and until 12 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Carvers work tirelessly throughout the month to constantly keep freshly carved pumpkins out. Learn more at jackolanternlouisville.com.
October 14 – 16, 2016: Southern Festival of Books — Nashville, TN
Join more than 200 of the nation’s and region’s most prominent authors at this year’s Southern Festival of Books held at the War Memorial Plaza in Nashville, TN. Authors on the program take part in a session — either a solo reading or a panel discussion — followed by a book signing. The festival hosts popular book exhibitors and performances on three stages throughout the weekend. Special events for children, book sales and other literary performances are planned, providing something for everyone. With mystery writers, debut novelists, poets, biographers, chefs and children’s authors, the Nashville community will come together to celebrate a love for literature. The festival is free and open to the public. Learn more at humanitiestennessee.org.
October 14 – 15, 2016: City Farmhouse Pop-Up Fair — Franklin, TN
Expect to find great vintage items, artisan goods and antiques at the City Farmhouse Pop-Up Fair in Franklin, TN, featuring more than 80 vendors. This event attracts people from all over the country and it’s in Nashville’s backyard. Enjoy an amazing weekend of curated art, music, food and more! Each year brings new celebrity talent, so check back for updates and information. Day passes are $12. On Friday, October 14, you can shop the show early at the preview party from 8 p.m. to 12 p.m. Tickets for this event are $25 per person and include access to Saturday’s show. Learn more at cityfarmhousefranklin.com.
October 15, 2016: Memphis Food & Wine Festival — Memphis, TN
It has been years in the making and it’s finally here! The inaugural Memphis Food & Wine Festival brings together top wineries and the top chefs from Memphis and the South — plus a few superstars from both coasts. Tickets are limited and are $200 each and the event begins at 6 p.m. Complete details and tickets are online at memphisfoodwinefestival.org.
October 15, 2016: Run Like Hell — Atlanta, GA
Get ready to Run Like Hell through Atlanta’s Oakland Cemetery for their annual 5K — or maybe just Run like Heck for the 1K run! Run Like Hell is a Peachtree Road Race qualifier and covers several areas of Oakland Cemetery, including the Grant Park neighborhood. All proceeds benefit the Historic Oakland Foundation and all walkers, leashed dogs and strollers are welcome. Learn more at oaklandcemetery.com.
October 21 – 23, 2016: 10th Annual RiverArtsFest — Memphis, TN
The region’s largest juried fine arts festival is back for its 10th year in the South Main Arts District. Come to see the works of more than 180 artists from around the country, music on three stages, food and beverages and activities for all ages. $5 admission for adults and kids attend free. The festival gets underway at 6 p.m. on Friday, October 21; more information is online at riverartsmemphis.org.
October 21 – 23, 2016: Taste of Atlanta — Atlanta, GA
Hey foodies, it’s time to knock your forks off at the 15th year of Taste of Atlanta! This year, more than 90 delicious local spots will serve wonderful bites, as well as show off the talents of some the best chefs in the city on four (!) live demo stages. Tickets are $25 for either Saturday or Sunday, as long as you purchase them before October 7 (prices increase that day) and VIP passes are available at an additional cost for a few additional perks. Learn more at tasteofatlanta.com.
October 21 – 23, 2016: Carolina Balloon Fest — Statesville, NC
If there’s a North Carolina event that is a MUST, it’s the Carolina Balloon Fest in Statesville. For three days, hot air balloons of all shapes and sizes color the sky. It’s likely a sight like you’ve never seen. Don’t be surprised to see Yoda, Darth Vader or even the Wicked Witch of the West floating by! Balloons launch twice a day, depending on the wind, but there’s plenty to do in-between, including wine and craft beer tastings, tethered balloon rides, a pilot meet-and-greet and so much more. Pack up chairs or a blanket and plan to spend the entire day having fun. You won’t want to miss the Saturday night Balloon Glow where all the balloons light up the night at the same time! Go to carolinaballoonfest.com for daily ticket prices and parking information.
October 22, 2016: Lexington Barbecue Festival — Lexington, NC
Plan to pig out at the 33rd annual Lexington Barbecue Festival. The popular event draws people from all over the South and it’s no wonder with plenty of famous Lexington-style barbecue, carnival games, pig races, a wine garden and seven entertainment stages. The Southeast Tourism Society has named it one of the Top 20 Events for October, so don’t miss out! Admission is free and festivities go from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit barbecuefestival.com.
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