Thursday, October 13, 2016

Best Fall Festivals in Florida for RV Campers

Are you looking for the best fall festivals across the state? We have a juicy list for you that spans across the sunshine state and across a variety of interests. These events are sure to be a good time. Plus, we've included some of our RV resorts nearby so you know where to bunk after the event.

SOUTH FLORIDA

Stay at a Newby Fun Resort: 
Orange Harbor RV Resort Fort Myers [If you're 55+ and on the road for south Florida festivals, head back up to Orange Harbor RV resort. This beautiful resort is located on the water and features plenty of amenities and monthly events to keep you entertained.]
Photo Credit: VisitFlorida
FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL AIR SHOW – Celebrating its 35th year, the show will feature amazing military and civilian aircraft, some doing death-defying stunts performed by some of the best pilots in the world. Also, enjoy an expanded aircraft exhibit, a kids area and great refreshments.
When: Oct. 21-23
Where: Punta Gorda Airport, Punta Gorda
Web:  floridaairshow.com

CARDBOARD BOAT RACE – Come watch this hilarious family-oriented event, or better yet, be a part of the action by creating a team name and theme for your vessel and see how far you can go. You’ll be amused and amazed as vessels – yes, made of cardboard – speed across the water in their quest for the ultimate prize – the coveted plastic trophy.
When: Oct. 15
Where: Hollywood Marina, Hollywood
Web: hollywoodfl.org


37th ANNUAL FANTASY FEST – Leave the young’uns at home and head for this non-stop, adult-themed mega-party, featuring lavish floats, parades, costume competitions (one for pets, too!), street fairs, island bands and great food. This year’s theme is “Political Voodoo & Ballot Box Barbarians.”  Book your table early for the extravagant and outrageous 34th ANNUAL HEADDRESS BALL, Fantasy Fest’s premier gay and lesbian event. The first-place prize for best costume has been doubled to $3,000 for this year’s bash.
When: Oct. 21-30 for the entire festival and Oct. 27 for the Headdress Ball
Where: Where else but Key West (various locations)
Web: fantasyfest.com and headdressballkeywest.com


MIA ANIMATION – If you’re into animation, you won’t want to miss this industry conference. It focuses on computer animation, gaming, visual effects and motion graphics, web design and visual arts. It features world-renowned speakers, technology influencers and the best talent in the industry.
When: Oct. 21-22
Where: Wolfson Campus at Miami Dade College, Miami
Web: miaanimation.com

Photo Credit: The News -Press

27th ANNUAL DING DARLING DAYS – Enjoy a week of fun eco-activities in this great national wildlife refuge. It features free tours (via tram, foot, kayak and paddle boards), birding, archery clinics, a butterfly house and kids crafting.
When: Oct. 16-22
Where: J. N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge, Sanibel Island
Web: dingdarlingsociety.org

MIAMI ATTRACTIONS MONTH – It’s the ultimate BOGO: Enjoy an amazing array of Miami’s best attractions on a buy-one, get-one-free basis or some other form of serious discount. Attractions include, among others: Zoo Miami, Monkey Jungle, Miami Seaquarium, the Biltmore Hotel, Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Park, Vizcaya Museum & Gardens, Miccosukee Indian Village and Jungle Island.
When: The entire month of October
Where: Throughout Miami
Web: MiamiAttractionsMonth.com

Photo Credit: Visit Florida
SOUTH BEACH SEAFOOD WEEK & FESTIVAL – Help kick off the annual Stone Crab season and enjoy a myriad of other seafood yummies prepared by Miami’s top chefs and restaurants. Also: live bands, culinary and mixology demonstrations, a kids zone, health village and VIP hospitality benefits.
When: Oct. 20-22
Where: Between 7th and 9th Streets on Ocean Drive in Miami Beach
Web: sobeseafoodfest.com

GOOD EATS IN NAPLES – Back to back, there’s the Naples Foodie Camp and then the Naples Stone Crab Festival. Foodie Camp is an 11-day event that features chef-led 90-minute cooking classes at top area restaurants. Besides great stone crab claws, the Stone Crab Festival (at several connecting locations on the Old Naples Waterfront) also has live music, art and fun activities for the whole family.
When: Respectively, Oct. 17-27 and Oct. 28-30
Web: Respectively, FoodieCampNaples.com and stonecrabfestival.org

Photo Credit: Visit Florida
AHOY, MATEYS & LASSIES – There are two noteworthy pirate fests in SoFla in October, one on the west coast and one on the east coast: 11th Annual Pirate Festival on Fort Myers Beach, Oct. 7-9, and the Boynton Beach Haunted Pirate Fest and Mermaid Splash, Oct. 21-23. Both will feature some of the usual fun pirate fare: ship battles, costume contests, magic shows, live music, treasure hunts and lots of activities for the youngsters.
Web: Respectively, fmbpiratefest.com and bbpiratefest.com


HUMPHREY BOGART FILM FESTIVAL – This year’s gathering celebrates the 75th anniversary of “The Maltese Falcon” and the 70th anniversary of “The Big Sleep.” Besides these and other great Bogie Flicks, other activities include cocktail receptions, dinners and dancing, round table discussions and tours on the original “African Queen.”
When: Oct. 12-16
Where: Various locations in Key Largo
Web: bogartfilmfestival.com

 
Photo Credit: Visit Florida

BRAZILIAN FESTIVAL OF POMPANO BEACH – Get your Brazilian boogie on at the fifth annual fest. Two stages will feature internationally known Brazilian bands and solo performers and also the best of the local bands.  Also: a kids zone, skate board competition, more than 100 vendors and exhibitors and mouth-watering Brazilian food.
When: Oct. 22
Where: Pompano Beach Community Park in Pompano Beach
Web: brazilianfestpompano.org


Photo Credit: Visit Florida
OKTOBERFEST II -- Beer! Bratwurst! Butt-kicking live music! Kids activities! Bavarian beauties! More beer! Two big weekends of fun! 31st annual edition!
When: Oct. 21-23 and 28-30
Where: German-American Social Club, Cape Coral
Web: capecoraloktoberfest.com


ARTS & CRAFTS BONANZA – The 2016-17 season kicks into high gear in October with five major fests and fairs in SoFla. You’ll get to see work by some of the finest artists, crafters and photographers in the country – all in beautiful downtown settings with superb shopping, eateries and watering holes. Here’s the lineup: The Falls Festival of the Arts in Miami, Oct.8-9; 19th Annual Lauderdale by the Sea Craft Festival, Oct. 8-9; 17th Annual Downtown Stuart Craft Festival, Oct. 15-16; 29th Annual Las Olas Art Fair in Fort Lauderdale, Oct. 22-23, and the 3rd Annual Delray Beach Marketplace Art & Craft Festival, Oct. 29-30
Web: miamieventsandfestivals.com for the first one and artfestival.com for the others

CENTRAL FLORIDA

Stay at a Newby Fun Resort:
Buttonwood Inlet RV Resort Cortez, FL [This all-age family community is on the water and a perfect place to crash after some of these amazing events! It's right off the interstate, so you can zoom up the coast fast. Plus, it's walking distance from local amenities too.

Clearwater Travel Resort Clearwater, FL [This all-age family community is just minutes from the beach, which you don't want to miss if you're visiting Florida. Stop by this awesome resort to relax in their large pool or attend a fun monthly event!]

Fiesta Grove RV Resort Palmetto, FL [If you're looking for fun, this 55+ community has it in spades. Stop here to meet great people and join in on the exciting monthly events. You'll love all the amenities and it's just off the interstate so you can get to any of these great events fast.]

Winterset RV Resort Palmetto, FL [This 55+ community is one-of-a-kind with lots of amenities and an atompshere that keeps people coming back year after year. Stop by here for a fun time and then head on up the nearby interstate to get to any of the amazing events below.]

Leisure Day RV Resort Zephryhills, FL [Leisure Days is a 55+ community where the residents make you feel like family. We enjoy country living but are still just minutes from everything you’ll need. Tampa and Orlando are less than an hour away, so you’re in the heartbeat of Florida. Make this your home base as you enjoy all Florida has to offer.]

Woodall's Village Lakeland, FL [Known as the friendliest park in town, this 55+ community is the perfect place to hang your hat as you visit Florida. Stop here to enjoy all the fun monthly events from line dancing to country concerts. You're sure to get a taste of southern charm when you stay here.]
                                                                                                                     
BIKETOBERFEST – See why 125,000 bikers come roaring into Daytona Beach every year for one of the country’s top bike fests. The three-day continuous party features multiple motorcycle shows and rallies, live music, scenic rides along A1A and other historic roadways, racing at Daytona International Speedway and vendors offering the latest motorcycle models, parts and accessories.
When:  Oct. 13-16
Where: Daytona Beach
Web: daytonabeach.com/biketoberfest


RATTLESNAKE FESTIVAL – Often confused with the Texas city bearing the same name, this small Florida town has been celebrating this Wild West-ish festival every October since 1967. The 50th promises two full days of country music, cowboy demonstrations, a snake show, gopher races, rides, games, races and food trucks.
When: Oct. 15-16
Where: San Antonio
Web: rattlesnakefestival.com


Photo Credit: All About the Sunshine State
FRUITVILLE GROVE’S ANNUAL PUMPKIN FESTIVAL – This outdoor fall festival takes place on a real family owned farm and is a favorite among local families who take part in the free petting zoo and pumpkin photo opps and pay anywhere from $2-7 for various activities such as pony rides, a rock climbing wall and pumpkin painting.
When: Every weekend in October
Where: Fruitville Grove, Sarasota
Web: fruitvillegrove.com


Photo Credit: Visit Florida

SPACE COAST OKTOBERFEST & MUSIC FESTIVAL – Experience the combination of a traditional Oktoberfest celebration with a modern music festival, complete with steins of beer, bratwurst and other German foods, plus a dozen rock, country and pop bands. It’s also family-friendly with a huge kids’ zone play area and covered tent areas so you can relax in the shade.
When: Oct. 8-9
Where: Palm Bay Regional Park, Palm Bay
Web: spacecoastoktoberfest.com

SCARECROW FESTIVAL – Celebrate fall in Florida by stuffing your own scarecrow, participating in a pumpkin toss, riding a barrel train and petting farm animals. Kids can play carnival games and romp around in a bounce house, and at 1 p.m. a giant pumpkin will drop from a bucket truck, scattering candy and prizes.
When: Oct. 8
Where: Pioneer Florida Museum & Village, Dade City
Web: pioneerfloridamuseum.org




WINTER SPRINGS ARTOBERFEST – Set on beautiful Blumberg Boulevard in the upscale neighborhood of Winter Springs, ARToberFEST show not only showcases award-winning pieces from locally and nationally known artists, but also has German food and beer, live entertainment from Europa, a kids’ crafts area and exhibits of student and senior art.
When: Oct. 15-16
Where: Winter Springs Town Center, Winter Springs
Web: wsfota.org

LEGOLAND’S BRICK OR TREAT – Brick or Treat returns bigger and better, bringing back the friendly-not-frightening Halloween fun for kids. Take the little ones trick-or-treating along the Brick or Treat Trail, check out the larger-than-life LEGO models, take part in build activities and a scavenger hunt, see the world's largest LEGO jack-o-lantern, and end the day with a Halloween-themed fireworks show in Pirates' Cove.
When: Every weekend in October, plus Oct. 31 (no fireworks on Oct. 31)
Where: LEGOLAND, Winter Haven
Web: legoland.com/brick-or-treat-event


NORTH FLORIDA
Stay at a Newby Fun Resort:
Bayhead Tallahassee, FL [This family-friendly RV resort is in the heart of Tallahassee, right by major universities and tons to do! Check out a football game or just relax in this large, sprawling community. You'll enjoy a country feel while being just minutes from these amazing events!]

Sandhill Shores Fort Pierce, FL [Sandhill Shores is a 55+ active community with lots to do. Enjoy a beautiful pool, billiards, shuffleboard and more! You'll love the friendly neigbors and events happening daily! Stop here after one of these great events. You won't regret it!]


3RD ANNUAL JAZZ, ARTS AND BLUES FESTIVAL — Held in historic Live Oak, Florida, the Jazz, Arts and Blues Festival features an exclusive music lineup and artist exhibits as well as food and beverage vendors. Thousands of music lovers from North Florida and South Georgia gather to enjoy the friendly atmosphere and exquisite arts.
When: Oct. 21 - 22
Where: Live Oak
Web: liveoakjabfest.org

CORN MAZE — Sykes and Cooper call their fall spectacular agritainment — combining a nine-acres of “cornfusing” turns in this year’s maze. Other entertainment includes Friday night “Movies Under the Stars,”  a donkey named Jack, hay rides, a cow milking station, duck races and other fall-themed family fun.
When: Oct. 8-30
Where: Sykes and Cooper Farms, Elkton
Web: sycofarms.com

Photo Credit: Visit St. Augustine

OWL PROWL — Owls are definitely not the first creatures that come to mind in association with Florida. Gators, flamingos, dolphin, yes — owls not so much. But here’s a chance to learn more about these resident birds of the night during a guided walk with a St. Johns County Naturalist. Participants are encouraged to bring a flashlight, bug spray and water for this evening walk.
When: Oct. 14
Where: Canopy Shores Park, St. Augustine
Web: st-johns.fl.us/CountyNaturalist


ALLIGATOR WARRIOR FESTIVAL — Fun fact: Lake City was known as Alligator, Fla., in the early 1800s and its most famous resident was the Seminole commander, Alligator Warrior. In addition to celebrating the Native American people who made Florida their original home, this annual fest includes a reenactment of the 1836 battle of San Felasco Hammock, plus music, dancing, living-history camps, traders, craftsmen and food vendors.
When: Oct. 14-16
Where: Lake City
Web: alligatorfest.org

Photo Credit: Design Week Tallhassee
DESIGN WEEK TALLAHASSEE — Visual artists, from students to veteran freelancers, don’t need to travel to a design hub like the Big Apple to get the creative juices flowing thanks to seven days of sessions at the inaugural Design Week Tallahassee. Sessions will either be free or low-cost for all attendees and will feature topics such as UX Design, Illustration, Digital Design, Sign Design and Cartography.
When: Oct. 16-22
Where: Tallahassee
Web: designweektallahassee.com


5TH ANNUAL COUNTRY FRENCH FLEA MARKET — If you love upcycled treasures, handmade jewelry, shabby chic chairs, vintage Euro-inspired accents and local art, then bring your shopping list to the Sweet South Cottage market. More than 150 vendors will be selling items perfect for your home. There will also be free painting demonstrations and fantastic eats at a restored Queen Anne Victorian home.
When: Oct. 21-22
Where: Sweet South Cottage, near Tallahassee
Web: frenchcountryfleamarket.com


1890s FESTIVAL — Turn back time under the live oak trees in Victorian McIntosh with more than 30,000 people who arrive in town for the annual event. More than 280 arts and crafts vendors will host demonstrations by a spoon chime crafter, glassblower and basket weaver; or get a glimpse into the past at the town’s museum in the restored downtown railroad depot. Also: antique vendors; live music featuring Cajun, bluegrass and gospel tunes; plus children’s activities and food.
When: Oct. 22
Where: McIntosh
Web: friendsofmcintosh.org


QUINCY PORCHFEST — It’s like trick-or-treating for adults, except at each house there’s a different musical act performing instead of candy being passed out and you’re encouraged to stick around. Now in its fifth year, Quincy (pop. almost 7,000) will have you rocking and grooving to sweet tunes in the front yards of various homes throughout town.
When: Oct. 22
Where: Quincy
Web: quincyporchfest.com


BELLAMY BRIDGE GHOST WALKS — The restless spirit of Elizabeth Jane Croom Bellamy, who died in 1837, which accounts for numerous eyewitness tales of strange manifestations near the site of the Bellamy Bridge and proximity to Halloween, make late October’s annual Ghost Walks a spooky slam dunk. There are also the legends about a murdered moonshine runner and a headless driver that keep the spiritual lore alive. Reservations for the walks should be available starting in late September.
When: Oct. 28-29
Where: Bellamy Bridge Heritage Trail
Web: bellamybridge.org


THE FEST 15 — Only 15 years ago, The Fest was an indie, underground music festival with 60 bands playing four stages. Now, the event is so large that attendees can head south to Ybor City for a two-day Pre-Fest (Oct. 26-27) to reach even more music lovers. This year’s lineup also has added a comedy showcase can professional wrestling.
When: Oct. 28-30
Where: Gainesville, various venues
Web: thefestfl.com

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