Things to do in Minnesota in the Fall 2015: The List
Duluth, MN in Nov, just before the ice starts to form.
city’s annual King Turkey Day festival.
Northfield, MN’s annual Defeat of Jesse James Days festival takes place Sept. 9-13. The wild-west style re-enactment recognizes Northfield’s defeat of James’ gang during its attempted robbery of the First National Bank in 1876. The festival also includes a rodeo, parade, and art fair.
Now in its 65th year, the Tri-State Band Festival in Luverne, MN is the region’s longest-running marching band festival. On Sept. 26, More than 2,500 students from bands in Minnesota, Iowa and South Dakota participate in field and parade competitions.
Johnny Appleseed Festival returns to Lake City, MN Oct. 3. Sample fresh picked apples and apple products, enjoy arts and crafts and a farmer’s market, or participate in the annual chili cook-off. The city is central to MN’s top apple growing region.
See giant pumpkins, enjoy a bowl of warm chili and participate in pumpkin carving and kid games at Stillwater’s Harvest Fest & Giant Pumpkin Weigh-off held Oct. 10-11. The event also features bluegrass music and a bake off. Over the years, pumpkins weighed in here have broken state and Guinness Book records.
Duluth’s annual Gales of November event takes place Nov. 6-7 at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center (DECC). Gales of November is named for the stormiest time of the year on Lake Superior. This year’s event features music, art, special Great Lakes Aquarium tours, speakers and more.
The annual Beacon Lighting at Split Rock Lighthouse takes place Nov. 10. The event commemorates the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald on Nov. 10, 1975. The annual event is the only opportunity to see the beacon lit.
King Turkey Day returns to Worthington Sept. 18-19. See Worthington take on Cuero, Texas in a turkey race to earn the title of top turkey town.
Theatre & Arts:
The Duluth Symphony Orchestra opens its 2015-2016 season with “Genesis” on Sept. 12 in Duluth, MN. Pianist Alexander Korsantia performs Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3
The North Shore’s Crossing Borders Studio Tour starts Sept. 25. Galleries and studios from Duluth to Grand Portage are open for tour, amid views of the fall leaves.
The Meander Upper Minnesota River Arts Crawl returns Oct. 2-4. The free, self-guided tour features 33 studios in Western Minnesota towns including Montevideo and Granite Falls, MN.
The Sogn Valley Art Fair returns to Cannon Falls, MN Oct. 3-4. The 43rd annual craft fair takes place at the Makarios Farm, featuring more than 30 artists from around the region, plus local produce and honey, food and live music.
Stillwater, MN’s annual Fall Colors Fine Art & Music Festival takes place Oct. 3-4. The juried fine arts festival features works from Upper Midwest artists, live music and food along the St. Croix River in downtown Stillwater, MN.
See work from more than 100 artists at Red Wing’s Fall Festival of the Arts Oct. 10-11 in downtown Red Wing, MN. The juried festival is in its 49th year and features food and live music.
Lanesboro, MN’s Commonweal Theatre showcases The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Nov. 13-Dec. 20.
The 12th Annual Minnesota Governor’s Deer Opener weekend takes places in Mountain Iron, MN Nov. 5-8.
The North Shore’s Bluefin Bay holds Fall Food & Wine Lovers Weekend Nov. 6-7, featuring special chef prepared meals with wine parings.
Tour the haunted ship William A. Irvin in Duluth, MN beginning Oct. 2. The self-guided tour of the historic ore ship features a maze of flickering lights, slamming doors and ghosts that haunt the ship all month long.
Brainerd, MN’s Great Pumpkin Festival takes place Oct. 17. Try your luck at the three-legged race, pumpkin rolling, pie throwing and pumpkin ring toss. Enjoy arts, crafts, food and free cider and hot chocolate.
Spend a weekend away in Grand Marais, MN during the annual Moose Madness Family Festival Oct. 16-18. Events include a fun run/walk, a scavenger hunt, short family-friendly classes at the North House Folk School, arts and crafts demonstrations and more.
Red Wing, MN carries on its 36-year tradition of Pumpkins at the Depot Oct. 24-Nov. 1. Lighted pumpkins are on display 24 hours a day for eight days leading up to Halloween. The event supports Red Wing Area Food Shelf.
Enjoy an old-fashioned Halloween at the Gibbs Farm in Falcon Heights,MN Oct. 31. Trick-or-treat at the farmhouse, and participate in the costume contest, find pennies in a haystack and make popcorn balls.
For the Adults:
Stomp grapes at the annual Carlos Creek Grape Stomp and Fall Festival Sept. 18-20 at Carlos Creek Winery in Alexandria, MN. Sample wines, list to music from 12 different live bands, and tour 150 art and food vendors. The festival’s “man cave” features Schell’s Beer.
Take out your lederhosen, it’s time for Oktoberfest! New Ulm, MN’s annual festival returns for the 34th year, offering four locations of entertainment – with plenty of accordions – and locally brewed August Schell’s beer. Don’t miss polka, German-style collectables and gifts, and plenty of German food. This year’s event takes place Oct. 2-3 and 9-10.
Winehaven Winery’s Federweisser Festival is held Oct. 17-18 in Chisago City, MN. The German style festival allows guests to sample wines made from the 2015 harvest. Come back Nov. 21-22 for the winery’s Cheese and Chocolate Weekend, and pick up special parings in time for the holiday season.
Alexis Bailly Vineyard in Hastings, MN hosts its annual Nouveau Harvest Festival Nov. 7-8. The event includes a special release of the winery’s Nouveau wine.
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