NASHtoday Events

Fall festivals, foodie events, and Halloween fun in Nashville

Fall festival season in Nashville, Tennessee, is right around the corner. Add these local events to your calendar to stay busy until the leaves stop being crunchy.


Boo at the Zoo returns Friday, Oct. 13. | Photo via Nashville Zoo

Table of Contents

It’s almost sweater weather, Nashville. With cooler weather comes a bustling festival season in Music City. We’ve rounded up 30+ activities — consider this the ultimate fall bucket list.

Fall festivals + fairs

Cheekwood Harvest | Through Sunday, Oct. 29 | Cheekwood
This year’s Cheekwood Harvest features three pumpkin houses, a scarecrow trail, beer garden, and other can’t-miss harvest happenings.

Kidsville Family Festival | Saturday, Sept. 23 | Centennial Park
The park will transform into the ultimate playground with dance performances, live readings, family-friendly yoga, and more family-friendly fun.

International Black Film Festival | Wednesday, Sept. 27-Sunday, Oct. 1 | Locations vary
The festival’s special presentations include a Lead Belly documentary, holiday film “Forgetting Christmas,” and a 10-minute preview of “The Color Purple” ahead of its release later this year.

Nashville Film Festival | Thursday, Sept. 28-Wednesday, Oct. 4 | Locations vary | In addition to 140 film screenings, make plans to attend filmmaker Q+As, industry panels, live music showcases, and after parties.

Two people being interviewed on a red carpet at the Nashville Film Festival

Roll out the red carpet — it’s almost time for the 2023 Nashville Film Festival. | Photo via Nashville Film Festival

2023 Fall Ball, Y’all Festival | Saturday, Sept. 30 | Nashville Farmers Market, 900 Rosa L. Parks Blvd.
NFM’s autumn harvest party will have live bluegrass, a pumpkin patch, fall-themed crafts, a pie baking contest, and more.

Touch of Brews | Friday, Sept. 29-Saturday, Sept. 30 | Sevier Park
Spend the day at this Grateful Dead-inspired festival with live music, craft beer, a kid’s zone, food, and vendors. Pro tip: Kids 10 and under get in free.

Artville | Friday, Sept. 29-Sunday, Oct. 1 | Wedgewood-Houston + Chestnut Hill
Expect 20 art installations and murals at this new visual arts festival, plus an After Dark Series showcasing interactive art experiences, music, and kids programming.

Nashville Oktoberfest | Thursday, Oct. 5-Sunday, Oct. 8 | Bicentennial Capitol Mall
This family-friendly tradition features local breweries, live music, a brat eating contest, a 5k Bier Run, and a Dachshund Derby.

Celebrate Nashville Cultural Festival | Saturday, Oct. 7 | Centennial Park
The annual festival features entertainment stages, educational exhibits, food, shopping, and other activities honoring over 50 cultures.

Fall Tennessee Craft Fair | Friday, Oct. 13-Sunday, Oct. 15
Shop fine crafts from jewelry, clay, and leather to wood, glass, and paintings from hundreds of Tennessee artists.

Light the Nations | Saturday, Oct. 21 | The Nations
The 7th annual event celebrating this West Nashville neighborhood features art, vendors, food trucks, live entertainment, and luminary bag decorating.

Southern Festival of Books | Saturday, Oct. 21-Sunday, Oct. 22 | Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park
The annual literary festival welcomes 150 authors to Nashville for two days of public programming, including author talks, book signings, and more.

El Día de los Muertos | Saturday, Oct. 28-Sunday, Oct. 29 | Cheekwood
Attend this annual celebration of Mexican and Latin American culture with traditional music and dance, vibrant art, and other activities.

PumpkinFest | Saturday, Oct. 28 | Downtown Franklin
Walk down Main Street to check out over 150 craft vendors and 30 food vendors + enjoy activities like costume contests, a kids zone, and live music.


Pumpkinfest is our kind of stroll down Main Street. | Photo by Daniel White Photography via the Heritage Foundation of Williamson County

Food + drink festivals

Nashville Brew Fest | Friday, Sept. 29 | First Horizon Park
The evening will feature over 50 breweries, 150 beers, food trucks, music, and lawn games — early admission at 7 p.m. is $65.

Nashville Food Faire | Saturday, Sept. 30 | The Yard at oneC1TY
Shop from dozens of local vendors selling blended teas, handmade pastas, hot sauces, jams, and other provisions. Guests are encouraged to bring non-perishable food items to donate to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee.

Taste of Bellevue | Sunday, Oct. 1 | Ford Ice Center
Sample food from 20+ vendors, including Oki Doki Pierogi, Han’s Deli, The Loveless Cafe, and Tito’s Mexican Restaurant.

Taste of West Nashville | Tuesday, Oct. 3 | Fat Bottom Brewing Co.
Arrive hungry at this annual tasting event. This year’s gathering features everything from sushi and pizza to coffee and cookie dough.

Mac and Cheese and Wing a Ding Ding Festival | Saturday, Oct. 7 | First Horizon Park
Choose from three ticket types to sample 30+ kinds of mac and cheese, wings, and fried chicken.

Nashville Whiskey Festival | Saturday, Oct. 7 | Omni Hotel Nashville
The general admission grand tasting ticket grants access to educational seminars and a complimentary glass.

Good Coffee Fest | Saturday, Oct. 14 | The Outfield in Wedgewood-Houston
This ultimate festival for coffee lovers features samples from local shops, coffee education workshops, and a variety of food vendors.

Kosher Nashville Hot Chicken Festival | Sunday, Oct. 22 | Gordon Jewish Community Center
Not only will you sample hot chicken and other Kosher food and treats, but the Nashville Jewish Arts & Music Festival is taking place at the same time.

Fall Fest | Sunday, Oct. 22 | Southern Grist Brewing Co. (The Nations)
This all-ages event has everything from a photo booth and face painting to a local fall market and beer garden. The 21+ crowd can enjoy exclusive beers and a limited bottle release.

Nashville Tequila Festival | Friday, Oct. 27 | The Yard at oneC1TY
Choose from a selection of 50+ types of tequila while partying it up in your best Halloween costume, posing in the photo booth, and eating tacos.

Halloween Pooch Party. Photo by Wendy O'Barr. Courtesy of Cheekwood Estate & Gardens.

Have you asked your pup what they want to be for Halloween this year? | Photo by Wendy O’Barr via Cheekwood Estate & Gardens

Dog-friendly to-dos

A DOGgone Good OLD Time | Saturday, Oct. 7 | Charlie Daniels Park, Mt. Juliet
Bring the family (and your pup) to this annual festival supporting Old Friends Senior Dog Sanctuary. Some of the activities include costume contests and parades, a silent auction, food trucks, and dog-friendly vendors.

Dog Day Festival | Saturday, Oct. 21 | Centennial Park
Join the Nashville Humane Association for a day of dog-centered activities, including costume contests, agility demonstrations, live music, food trucks, and a kids zone.

Halloween Pooch Party | Saturday, Oct. 21-Sunday, Oct. 22 | Cheekwood
Dress up Fido for a stroll through the gardens and enjoy special treats from dog-friendly vendors.

Pups & Pints Howl-oween Festival | Saturday, Oct. 28 | The Yard at oneC1TY
Bring your canine companions for an afternoon of dog-centric activities, food trucks, beer tastings, and a Bark Market with dog-friendly vendors.

Howl-O-Ween Dog Festival | Sunday, Oct. 29 | New Heights Brewing Company
The brewery hosts a day of costume contests, vendors, beer flights (for humans), and adoptable dogs from MACC.


If you love to dance, be sure to visit the Monster Mash area. | Photo via Nashville Zoo

Halloween happenings

BOOze at the Zoo | Thursday, Oct. 12 | Nashville Zoo
Guests will collect treats along the Trick-or-Treat Trail, hear jokes from Gourdon the Talking Pumpkin, sip on unlimited samples, and catch a Halloween-themed animal show at the amphitheater.

Boo at the Zoo | Friday, Oct. 13-Sunday, Oct. 29 | Nashville Zoo
For two weeks, visit the zoo for trick-or-treating, Halloween-themed animal shows, a “Scary-Go-Round” carousel, and “Monster Mash” dance area.

Hocus Pocus in Concert | Saturday, Oct. 14-Sunday, Oct. 15 | Schermerhorn Symphony Center
Watch the Halloween favorite starring Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy while the Nashville Symphony performs the score live.

Candlelight: A Haunted Evening of Halloween Classics | Multiple dates | The Parthenon
A string quartet plays Halloween-inspired tunes from “Beetlejuice,” “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” and more.

“Rocky Horror Picture Show” | Friday, Oct. 27-Tuesday, Oct. 31 | Belcourt Theatre
Let’s do the Time Warp again, shall we? The Belcourt’s annual screenings of the cult classic film feature live cast Little Morals.

Wick-or-Treat Halloween Market | Saturday, Oct. 28 | Paddywax Candle Bar (Berry Hill)
The candle bar hosts the community for a day of shopping, entertainment, and flash tattoos.

Halloween Chills and Thrills | Saturday, Oct. 28 | Cedars of Lebanon State Park
Families are welcome to go trick-or-treating in the campgrounds.