The weather is cooler and the kids have gone back to school. It’s time for fall festivals. The summer was very hot this year. Maybe it’s been a while since you spent a day outside. Pack up the kids, wear your comfortable shoes and bring some cash, not all festivals take credit cards although the list is growing. You’ll have a good time.
Some of these festivals charge admittance but many are free to enter. If you have a small budget this year, look for the free festivals and bring your own drinks and snacks. There are always samples and other freebies.
Fall festivals were started by farmers who wanted to celebrate and mark the end of the growing season. Original competitions were who could cut the most hay fastest and who could catch the most greased pigs.
You don’t have to own pigs or be able to cut hay to have a good time at today’s festivals. Just bring an umbrella in case it rains and be prepared to have a good time.
Matthews Alive! Festival
Dates and Times: September 2-5.
What’s there: This year’s theme is Destination Matthews. The festival, which takes place in downtown Matthews, is in its 19th year. A variety of musicians and groups will perform. The list includes The Holiday Band, U-Phonik, The WannaBeatles Beatles Tribute Band, Henry Haney Project and the Band of Oz . There are also vendors and plenty of food. Lots of things for the kids to do.
For more information: http://matthewsalive.org
Cabarrus County Fair
Cabarrus Arena, Concord, Hwy. 49.
Dates and Times: September 10-18, 4 pm to 11 pm on weekdays. Weekends 1-11 pm.
Admission: $7 for adults, $3 for children under 12, $20 for ride wristband. Parking is freečcash for everything else.
What’s there: Live music plus midway rides, games, food, a petting zoo, agriculture education, business and community exhibits and more.
For more information: www.cabarruscountyfair.com.
Mint Hill Madness
Downtown Mint Hill
Dates and times: Friday, September 23 (5 pm to 11 pm) and Saturday, September 24 (8 am to 11 pm).
What’s there: Vendors, food, live music, cruise-in, beauty pageant, corn hole, baseball speed pitch, video games, gem hunting, magician and show car plus more.
For more information: www.minthillchamberofcommerce.com/madness.html
Battle of Bost Grist Mill
Hwy. 200, Concord
Dates and Times: September 10 – 11, 10 am
Admission: Adults 13 and over – $12, ages 6 – 12, $8, under 6, free.
What’s there: The Civil War encampment will feature 2 pm battles on both days with infantry, artillery, and mounted calvary. You will also see period civilians and a period fashion show. Bring your family, your friends, and yourself for a fun weekend of reenacting.
Also A Touch of Yesterday on October 1 and 2.
For more information: www.bostgristmill.com or 704-782-1600
21st Annual Founders’ Day
Hwy. 52, Gold Hill
Dates and Times: Saturday September 24, 10 am
What’s there: The Civil War Living History encampment area has been increased and an adjacent area will also include Heritage Living Exhibits, demonstrations and more. The 63rd North Carolina Troops will again host a skirmish between the North and the South at 4 pm on the lawn behind the Log Barn. Founders’ Day Parade begins at 10 am. Food and vendors too. Also, Gold Hill Ghost Tour October 29.
For more information: www.historicgoldhill.com
The 76th Annual Stanly American Legion, Post 76 County Fair
Dates and Times: September 28 to October 2: Gates are open Thursday and Friday at 5 pm – Saturday, Sunday and Monday, gates open at 3 pm.
Admission: $12črides are included in admission price. Thursday is Student Day with a $4 admission with ticket.
What’s there: Elvis contests, singers, dancers, demolition derby, agriculture exhibit halls, rides and games, plenty of food.
For more information: 704-983-2913
Get Lost Corn Maze
Hwy. 73, Millingport
Dates and times: 11 am to 7 pm from September 4 to Halloween
Admission: $6 per person
What’s there: Get Lost Corn Maze is a series of mazes cut into a rural area with surprises inside the mazes. This can take a while to get through so be sure to bring something to drink and have a plan for small children who may get tired walking through. Once you’re insidečyou have to finish.
For more information: 704.791.6950 or email@example.com
Best of Badin Festival
Dates and times: Friday and Saturday September 16-17.
What’s there: Vendors, games, music, food and more including tours of the Falls Dam, kid’s play area, live bands and street dancing. Fireworks on Saturday night. The Badin Museum is also open. Also Run the Valley 5K and 10K races.
For more information: www.badin.org
Aw Shucks Corn Maze
Dates and times: September 16 to November 20, Fridays: 6-10 pm (11 pm on Haunted Trail nights), Saturdays: 11 am to 10 pm (11 pm on Haunted Trail nights) Sundays: 1-6 pm
Admission: $8 per person
What’s there: Step back in time in the Old Fashioned General Store, enjoy a Hayride, and visit the Pumpkin Patch. Folks love our Animal Barn and visiting the Old Rail Car from the 1800s. The six acre Corn Maze is always fun and will entertain even the youngest of outdoor adventurers.
9th Annual Celebrate Midland Magic
Hwy. 601, Midland
Dates and Times: October 1-2
What’s there: Two day of events featuring food, vendors, children and adult rides, pooch pageant, car show, cowboy races, tractor pulls, music and more.
For more information: www.celebratemidlandmagic.com
No Tricks, Just Treats
Albemarle, N. Second Street
Dates and times: Thursday, October 27, 4 pm
What’s there: No Tricks, Just Treats festivities will kick off with a costume parade. Children, 12 and under, will have the opportunity to trick-or-treat through the downtown area. Treat bags will be provided for the children. A Kids’ event will be held at Courthouse Square Park.
For more information: 704-984-9417
Uwharrie Storytelling Festival
Albemarle, Central United Methodist Church
Dates and Times: Saturday, October 1, 1-7 pm.
What’s there: This will be the first storytelling event for downtown Albemarle. Local storytellers will be at the event with food vendors and entertainment. Sponsored by ADDC, Stanly County Library, Stanly County Arts Council and Stanly County Museum.
For more information: www.uwharriestorytelling.com
Old Fashioned Day
Morrow Mountain State Park
Dates and Times: Sunday, November 1 from noon to 5 pm.
What’s there: Exhibits and demonstrations planned include: gold panning, basket making, quilting, spinning, flintknapping, pottery, woodworking, old fashioned games, and history information. A Civil War encampment will be held at the Kron House.
For more information: 704-982-4402.
Hwy. 24,27, Midland
Dates and Times: Through October: Monday-Friday: 3:30-6 pm,
Saturday: 10 am to 6 pm and Sunday: 1-6 pm.
Admission: $5 for age 2 and over
What’s there: Pumpkin Weekends at Riverbend Farm offers incredible fun and educational opportunities for your entire family. Covered wagons take visitors on a ride through the farm’s rolling hills to see trees showing off their beautiful fall colors, and bright orange pumpkins waiting to be picked. Explore twenty-two acres of pumpkins in the field they were grown in. Make sure you bring your camera.
For more information: www.riverbendfarm.net
Carolina Renaissance Festival
Huntersville, off Hwy. 73
Dates and Times: October 8 – November 20, Saturdays and Sundays, 10 am to 5:30 pm
Admission: $19 for adults, $9 for 5-12, under 5 free
What’s there: The Renaissance Festival is a 16th century European style art and entertainment festival combining outdoor theater, circus entertainment, arts and crafts marketplace, a jousting tournament, a feast fit for royalty, and more.
For more information: 704-896-5544
3900 Rocky River Road, Charlotte
Dates and times: Open every day in October, Monday through Sunday, 9 am until dark.
What’s there: Pick your own pumpkin patch, Hayrides, Hay Mountain, Farm animals, Corn maze. Pony rides on Saturday and Sunday.
For more Information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Eldorado Outpost, near Troy
Dates: October 8 from 9 am to 6 pm.
What’s there: Activities include canoe adventure race, trail run, century bike ride, orienteering and geocaching, music in the mountains, book signings by local authors, nature walks, pottery demonstrations, and the taste of the Uwharries.
For more information: 910-572-3474.