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North Carolina Festivals and Events to Enjoy in October

After a long, hot summer, the cooler days of October are a welcome respite. The crisp air and gorgeous leaves help set the stage to enjoy outdoor fall festivals and events held across our great state. Here are some fun activities to add to your family’s calendar this October.

North Carolina Seafood Festival

Head to the Morehead City waterfront October 1-3 to enjoy lots of fresh, delicious seafood, live performances by musicians and street artists, arts and crafts and so much more at the North Carolina Seafood Festival. Visitors are encouraged to attend the Blessing of the Fleet during the festival, a way to recognize and honor the men and women who risk their lives to make a living from the waters and provide the wonderful seafood we all enjoy. For more information, visit NC Seafood Festival.

Carolina Renaissance Festival

Jousting knights on horseback, maidens, queens, mermaids, dragons, falcons and fairies await visitors at the Carolina Renaissance Festival on Saturdays and Sundays from October 2 until November 21. Festival goers will enjoy a fall stroll through the Village of Fairhaven where history comes alive with non-stop, immersive and interactive entertainment. The open-air Artisan Market features arts, crafts, games, rides, food and more! For more information, visit Carolina Renaissance Festival.  

Autumn Leaves Festival

Take a step back in time and visit “Mayberry,” the iconic town where you can enjoy a relaxing day and the company of good folks at the 55th Annual Autumn Leaves Festival in Mount Airy on October 8-10. This nationally recognized, historic festival is held in the heart of downtown on Main Street where visitors can peruse arts and crafts from over 200 craftsmen, enjoy delicious “down home” food like ham biscuits, barbecue and Amish doughnuts, and dance or clap along to music from old-time, bluegrass and gospel acts. The festival began in 1966 as a closing celebration for tobacco and apple harvesting seasons. Today it is the celebration of the start of the autumn season and was named as one of the top 20 events in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society. For more information, visit Autumn Leaves Festival.

North Carolina State Fair

You likely attended the annual North Carolina State Fair when you were a child, so why not share a piece of your childhood with your family and make plans to attend the North Carolina State Fair on October 14-24? The fair is located at 1025 Blue Ridge Road in Raleigh. You can enjoy the full fair experience with rides like the Centrifuge, Alpine Bobs, Cliff Hanger and SkyGazer, the 155’ Ferris wheel, attractions including the Tractor Pull, Motorsports Mayhem and Pulling for Autism Draft Horse Pull, and tasty fair foods like caramel apples, cotton candy, funnel cakes and fried Oreos. For tickets and information, visit NC State Fair.

Kersey Valley Spookywoods Haunted Attraction

Since 1985, Spookywoods has been a top haunted attraction in all of North Carolina. It was even selected in USA Today’s 2021 Top Haunted Attractions in America. Guests walk along a winding, dirt road surrounded by “spooky” things that “live” in the haunted woods. Victoria’s Revenge, Werewolf Forest, Hedge Swamp and Funeral Home are a few of the attractions that await the brave. Please note that this attraction may not be appropriate for younger children. Spookywoods is located at 1615 Kersey Valley Road in Archdale. For more information, call 336-431-1700 or visit Spooky Woods

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