The days are cool, the leaves are blanketing the horizon with color and it’s time for apples, pumpkins and making family memories.
Oktoberfest at NOMA Square
Oct. 5 – 8
NOMA Square, Downtown Greenville
Celebrate the fifth annual Oktoberfest as NOMA Square and Main Street are transformed into a Bavarian Biergarten with live German music and dancing, contests, food and more. Don’t miss the Foothills Oompah Band and the bratwurst eating contest. Proceeds benefit the Community Foundation of Greenville.
Aunt Het Festival
Named for the fictional creation of writer Robert Quillen, few events capture hometown charm like Fountain Inn’s Aunt Het Festival. The event includes a classic car show (with a food drive for God’s Pantry), vendors, food, children’s activities, a pumpkin patch and lots of old fashioned fun. Start the day early with the Lauren’s Hope Foundation 5K, Pump and Run or Kids’ Fun Run. For details, visit http://laurenshope.org.
Spartanburg International Festival
The spotlight is on Finland for the 2017 International Festival. Celebrate Spartanburg’s diverse community through food, music, hands-on activities, dance and more. Three stages feature diverse music and dance. Strolling entertainers also are featured throughout the festival. The Avenue of Nations features more than 30 cultural exhibits and The International Trade Zone offers unique shopping opportunities. The International Kids’ Zone features children’s entertainment and hands-on make and take activities for the entire family. Children can also get a passport that can be stamped as they “travel” to more than 30 countries. And don’t miss sampling the international fare offered at the Boulevard of Foods.
South Carolina State Fair
Oct. 11 – 22
The South Carolina State Fair has something for everyone. The event includes big names in music, rides for all ages, fair food to challenge even the most adventurous appetites and the best in crafting, baking and more. The State Fairgrounds will be loaded with options, so visit the website in advance for maps, details and promotions.
Fall for Greenville
Oct. 13 – 15
Come hungry and stay late as Greenville shows off for the season at Fall for Greenville. Avoid the lines by getting taste tickets in advance. Enjoy music, culinary demonstrations, competitions and more. The youngest visitors get an entire city block of activities, including rides (tickets required) and other things to do. Kids will love the freebies found at booths throughout the event, too.
Pumpkintown Pumpkin Festival
Oolenoy Community Building, Pumpkintown
It’s more than just the name that brings visitors from all over to the center of Pumpkintown. Events start with the parade at 9 a.m. and continue throughout the day until 5 p.m. Enjoy food, crafts from a variety of vendors, rides, entertainment and tons of old fashioned fun. There’s even a greased pole climb at 3 p.m. It’s also a great chance to pick out the perfect pumpkin for Halloween.
Boo in the Zoo
Oct. 20 – 22 and 27 – 29
It’s one of the hottest tickets of fall, but it’s also the perfect place for Halloween memories. This year’s Boo in the Zoo features more than 20 trick-or-treat stations, character photo opportunities with princesses and superheroes, an extinct species graveyard, a Not-Very-Scary House and a new area called Dragon Alley. Same some trouble by utilizing the free park and ride service from County Square to the Greenville Zoo and back. Buses will run continuously between the two locations from one hour before the event until 9 p.m.
Greer Station Oktoberfest
Celebrate the change of seasons with German oompah bands, German foods (including desserts) and, for the grown-ups, German beer. Be sure to visit the wide array of artists who will offer their handiwork at the event. And be prepared to get super silly at the Chicken Dance Competition.
Oct. 26 – 28
Pavilion Recreation Complex
Enchanted Forest gives children 10 and younger a unique fairytale trick-or-treat experience with a variety of storybook characters from Sleeping Beauty to Snow White and destinations like Robin Hood’s Hideaway, Shrek’s Swamp and the magical, mythical maze. The event also includes carnival games, bounce houses, face painting, balloon animals, treats and a costume contest each night. Save by purchasing tickets in advance.
YMCA of Greenville Festivals
YMCA Branch Locations
YMCA of Greenville branches will celebrate the season with festivals for the whole family. The Caine Halter Family Branch Fall Festival is 6:30 – 8 p.m. Oct. 27. Enjoy games including pumpkin bowling, mummy races and cornhole, bounce houses, costume contests, craft stations, hayrides, photo booths, music and more. The Eastside Family YMCA Harvest Festival is 6 – 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18. The event includes games, face and pumpkin painting, an apple eating contest, a bon fire and s’mores and more. Visit the website for events at other branch locations.
Bark in the Park
Conestee Nature Park
Help save a life and have some Halloween fun in the process. Pet lovers of all ages and their four-legged friends are invited to Conestee Nature Park, where a variety of food, vendors, auctions and games for the entire family will be set up for the event. Kids and their pets are invited to come in costume, and there will be dog contests with prizes. All proceeds benefit at-risk animals in the Upstate.
Farms and Pumpkin Patches:
6600 S.C. Highway 92, Enoree
Located in Enoree, which is an approximate 30-minute drive from Greenville, Stewart Farms hosts fall activities each season that include a corn maze, pumpkin patch and wagon rides. Plus, it operates the Big Boo, a family-friendly and not-so-spooky haunted maze Friday and Saturday nights in October, beginning Oct. 13.
6510 New Cut Road, Inman
Only a short drive from both Greenville and Spartanburg, Johnson Farms in Inman offers hayrides, a corn maze, pumpkin patch, playground, pedal cars and a gem mine. There’s also a concession store for buying fresh products.
650 Fisher Road, Greer
Each year, Fishers Orchard draws families to its Greer farm during its annual fall festival, which operates weekends through Oct. 31. Families can explore a corn maze, take a wagon ride, pick pumpkins and more.
1515 Denver Road, Anderson
Denver Downs in Anderson offers one of the largest corn mazes in the state, along with a pumpkin patch and a wide variety of family activities, including hay rides, bon fires and more. An events calendar and full details are available online.
Mini Miracles Farm
708 Old Rutherford Road, Taylors
Mini Miracles Farm opens a pumpkin patch and its farm each year to the public, and this year’s charity patch will be open Oct. 4 – 29. Hayride tours are offered on Saturdays and Sundays, and there’s an animal education station where kids can get up close to pigs, sheep and other farm animals. In addition, there’s a children’s play area, grass maze, wooden train and tractor. Advance tickets are available online.
October Pumpkin Patch
Disciples United Methodist Church
185 Riley Smith Road, Greenville
www.mydisciples.org or 864-297-0382
Find pumpkins and gourds in all shapes and sizes. Open 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Mondays – Saturdays and noon and 7 p.m. Sundays.
Holy Cross Pumpkin Patch
109 West Trade St., Simpsonville
Beginning Oct. 7, find pumpkins from very small to more than 50 pounds, as well as corn stalks, gourds and more. Open noon – 8 p.m. Mondays – Fridays, 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. Saturdays and noon – 6 p.m. Sundays.