words: Catherine Frederick
All over our great state, leaves are a kaleidoscope of red, orange, yellow and gold. The temps are getting cooler, and fall festivals are beckoning. Weíve listed just a few of our favorites for you to enjoy!
32nd Annual King Biscuit Blues Festival
– West Helena
Founded in 1986, this is one of the nation’s foremost showcases of blues music. Tens of thousands of enthusiasts from all over the world converge on historic downtown. Five stages, street musicians, special events including the Flour Power 5k Run, the Tour da Delta bicycle race, and a Kansas City-sanctioned BBQ Contest, arts/crafts vendors galore, and one-of-a-kind shopping. Visit kingbiscuitfestival.com.
Hot Water Hills Music and Arts Festival
– Hot Springs
A unique blend of art, food, and MUSIC! This festival has a quirky mix of music, art, food, drink, contests, and kids’ activities, and is as appealing to hipsters as it is to hippies! There will be a handmade art fair with one-of-a-kind paintings, pottery, and jewelry. Bring a lawn chair and join the fun! Admission is $5 per day. Visit hotwaterhills.com.
This annual event has been held for more than thirty years. Don’t miss lumberjack competitions, a pageant and parade, a car and motorcycle show, a pinewood derby and bow shoot, games for kids of all ages, a 5K, arts and crafts, and lots more! Visit grantcountychamber.com/timberfest.
26th Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
– Hot Springs
A ten-day festival complete with screenings and parties all within walking distance. Take in more than one hundred of the best international features and shorts along with one-of-a-kind forums, tributes to industry greats, and noted guests and visiting professionals. Admission varies. Visit hsdfi.org.
7th Annual Main Street Food Truck Festival
– Little Rock
There will be more than fifty food trucks, tons of craft vendors, and a variety of entertainment. Spanning six blocks, there will be plenty of food, entertainment, and beer. Admission is free. Visit mainstreetfoodtrucks.com.
Turkey Track Bluegrass Park
Located near Waldron, Arkansas, Turkey Track Bluegrass Park is one of the largest bluegrass festivals west of the Mississippi. Bring the whole family and enjoy wholesome family entertainment! Scheduled performances are held Wednesday through Saturday. Visit turkeytrackbluegrass.com.
Hillberry The Harvest Moon Festival
– Eureka Springs
Featuring music on Thursday through Sunday, this event is held at “The Farm” located in the Ozark Mountains. The venue boasts beautiful 360-degree panoramic views and sits on 160 acres, backing to Mark Twain National Forest. Admission varies. Visit hillberryfestival.com.
Annual Bluegrass Festival
– Eureka Springs
Bluegrass weekend kicks off in Basin Spring Park. Bring your instrument and join in the fun! Admission is free. Visit eurekasprings.org/event/annual-bluegrass-festival/.
Fall Festival Arts & Crafts Fair
– Van Buren
Historic Main Street is the site for this old-fashioned fall festival. Over 200 exhibitors display artwork, handcrafted items, antiques, collectibles, food, carnival rides, and entertainment. Admission is free. Visit oldtownvanburen.com.
Arkansas Rice Festival
The 41st Annual Arkansas Rice Festival observes the rich heritage of rice farming in Arkansas and celebrates the harvest. Enjoy lots of carnival rides, live music on stage, vendors, a pageant, and much more. Visit arkansasricefestival.com.
Street Eats Food Festival
– Fort Smith
The inaugural Street Eats Food Truck Festival takes place in Downtown Fort Smith. Enjoy multiple food trucks from the area, and live music, alongside the River Valley Artisan Market, Fort Smith Farmer’s Market, and other mobile vendors. During the event, Razorback football fans can watch the Arkansas vs. Alabama game on-site! Contact 479.274.9559.
Johnny Cash Heritage Festival
This first-ever festival honors the artistry of Johnny Cash and the early influences on his music. The festival includes educational panels, regional foods, local crafts, area musicians on the Colony Circle stage, and world-class entertainment in the cotton fields adjacent to the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home. Concert host is Rosanne Cash! Admission is a combination of free and paid. Visit johnnycashheritagefestival.com.
Arkansas Cornbread Festival
– Little Rock
Since 2011, this festival has exploded in popularity! Enjoy a cornbread competition for home cooks as well as professionals, outstanding live music, local breweries, and vendors selling Arkansas-made food, crafts, and gifts. Visit
Downtown Fall Festival & Chili Cook-off
This fun-filled festival harkens back to the “good ole days” when carnivals set up on the streets of downtown Russellville. Start the morning with a breakfast buffet and enjoy more great food from vendors, Chili Cook-off samples, and Pie & Cake Contest entries. There’s the “Tour de Pumpkin” Bike Ride, a 5k race & 1-mile fun run, car show, arts & crafts, kids’ costume contest, games, and live entertainment all day long! Admission is free. Visit mainstreetrussellville.com.
*Please confirm directly with the promoter or venue to ensure event details have not changed.