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Top Events USA news blog where we hope to keep you up to date with the news about top events across the USA

Friday, September 30, 2011

Fall wine, crafts and ghosts in Northwest North Carolina

Over 160,000 people usually visit the Brushy Mountain Apple Festival in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina – this year on October 1. Created to celebrate the apple harvest from the nearby Brushy Mountains, the one-day arts and craft festival features over 100 food concessions, 400 art and craft vendors, and four large music stages. All of the crafts and exhibits are designed to display the unique heritage and culture of the southern Appalachian Mountains. Admission is free. 
The Yadkin Valley Grape Festival in Yadkinville on October 15 features over 25 wineries from the Yadkin Valley, an American Viticulture Area located in the northwest corner of North Carolina. The event also offers live entertainment, food, children’s activities, chili cook-off, and motorcycle ride to benefit the Hospice of Yadkin County. The festival is designed to showcase grapes and wines produced in the Yadkin Valley Appellation – consisting of Surry, Yadkin, Wilkes, parts of Stokes, Forsyth, Davidson and Davie counties. 
Locals in the nostalgic place known as Mayberry enjoy experiencing a three-day Autumn Leaves Festival from October 14 to 16 in downtown Mount Airy. Mayberry's downtown is alive with music, food and art.  This popular event celebrates the area’s rich musical heritage with nationally
renowned local musicians performing bluegrass, old-time and gospel music. Admission is free. 
The Mount Airy Museum of Regional History combines history with a bit of mystery with its newest program, Historic Mount Airy Ghost Tours. The tours are held every Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. through Oct. 22. 
Historic Wilkesboro is said to be haunted by a variety of locales, and every year, folks check for themselves during the Wilkes Candlelight Ghost Tours. Tour times are 7:30pm, 8pm, 8:30pm, and 9pm.
For more information on the Cascade Highlands visit www.trueblueridge.org 
For more information about top events in North Carolina take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in North Carolina.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

World's Largest Ballooning Event Takes to Skies

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta celebrates its 40th event from October 1 to 9 at Balloon Fiesta Park with 550 hot air balloons representing 20 countries and honoring the person who started it all in 1972 – Sid Cutter, the founder and "Father of Fiesta".
New this year will be the Sandia Resort and Casino $100,000 challenge, the richest active prize in ballooning. It will test pilots' skill and provide great visuals as competitors play an airborne version of ring toss, trying to connect with one of ten poles during the competitive flying events.
The mass ascensions will fill Albuquerque's morning skies with 550 hot air balloons on October 1, 2, 8 and 9.  The 16th America’s Challenge Gas Balloon event, a cross country competition, and the popular Balloon Glows (featuring 200+ hot air balloons in static display flickering their burners at sunset and into dusk) will round out the first weekend's evening events.
Opening day at Balloon Fiesta Park will also feature both a balloon version and airplane version of the "Missing Man Formation" balloon launch to honor the so-called "Father of Fiesta" Sid Cutter who passed away earlier this year.
The competitive flying starts on Monday of Balloon Fiesta week.  Competitive flying will continue throughout the week, taking a break on Wednesday for the Flight of the Nation's.  
Flying pigs, a giant butterfly and other unique objects are among the 99 special shape balloons that will take to the skies for their own mass ascension and balloon glows on Thursday and Friday at Balloon Fiesta Park.  Additional Mass Ascensions and a Balloon Glow will be included in the final weekend.
For more information visit the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
For more information about top events in New Mexico take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in New Mexico. http://www.topeventsusa.com/state-events-new-mexico.html

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Florida's Paradise Coast Celebrates Stone Crab Season

Florida’s annual Stone Crab Season runs from October through to May and fans of the tasty crab claws flock to Southwest Florida’s Paradise Coast region to find fresh-from-the-boat claws brought in daily to docks in Naples, Marco Island and Everglades City.  
A favorite place to savor a serving of stone crab claws – typically served cold with a tangy mustard dipping sauce – is the waterfront seafood market district along the Barron River in Everglades City, known as the Stone Crab Capital of the World.  
Another popular spot is the Old Naples Waterfront on the Gordon River and Naples Bay.  Since the 1920s, seafood processing began on the site of Tin City and in the  1940s, just a stone crab claw's toss across the Gordon River, Combs Fish Company opened its doors where today fishermen still bring in their stone crab claws, which are immediately processed and served fresh next door at Kelly’s Fish House Dining Room.
This year, on October 29 and 30, the Old Naples Waterfront area again celebrates the opening of the season with the second annual Stone Crab Festival. The festival, organized by the Old Naples Waterfront Association, features music, children’s activities, a block party and plenty of specials in the restaurants along Naples Bay.  Event venues include Tin City, Naples City Dock at Crayton Cove, Port O’ Call Marina, Bayfront Naples, Naples Bay Resort and Naples Harbour Yacht Club.  
For more information on Naples, Marco Island and the Everglades – Florida’s Paradise Coast, call 1-800-688-3600 or visit www.ParadiseCoast.com.   
For more information about top events in Florida take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Florida

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Branson Beckons Fall with National Harvest Festival

Silver Dollar City celebrates outdoor adventures with the National Harvest Festival this fall. One of the country’s most recognized craft festivals, the two-month event is a bounty of American crafts with over 125 demonstrating artisans, all-new shows, and fall specialty foods at the Branson theme park, September 10 to October 29.

Outdoor artistic performances take stage on Silver Dollar City’s Main Street with internationally-recognized craftspeople who create works of art completely out-of-the-ordinary – chalk street artists drawing in 3D and full color, a sand sculptor who will take 50-tons of sand to create a massive display, recognizing the special elements of the Harvest Festival such as lumberjacks and eagles.
The Harvest Festival entertainment includes an invitation to bring dancing shoes to join in Missouri’s Biggest Barn Dance with live music by much-loved bands like Texas in the Swing, Missouri Travelers, Les Gilliam & His Silverlake Band, and Silver Dollar City’s own legendary Horsecreek. The Opera House production show Headin’ West, winner of the theme park industry’s World’s Best Overall Production (“Big E” Awards), returns to tell the story of the American pioneer spirit in the 1870s west.

Fall harvest foods are served up throughout the park, with favorites such as smoked turkey legs and hearty skillet meals cooked on open grills. Tastes of America features festival dishes throughout the park, such as Indian Tacos and Wrangler's Buffalo Chili. Fall specialty desserts include an array of pies: Pumpkin, Peach, Pecan, Peanut Butter, Strawberry, Blackberry Cobbler and more.

The festival runs September 10 – October 29, open Wednesdays through Sundays, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., and on Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. Information: 800-831-4FUN(386) or www.silverdollarcity.com 
Visit www.explorebranson.com for information about Branson.
For more information about top events in Missouri take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Missouri

Monday, September 26, 2011

Final Race on US Steeplechase Circuit

The Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup is a perennial favorite in the fall in South Carolina. As the final race on the US Steeplechase racing circuit, the Colonial Cup often decides which horse, owner, trainer and rider wins the coveted Eclipse Award. 
The 42nd annual running of this famous race will be celebrated on Saturday November 19 at Springdale Race Course, Camden along with a special Salute to our Troops tribute. To honor the men and women in uniform, 3,000 free general admission tickets and 500 Infield Reserved Parking spaces are being given away on a first-come, first-serve basis, to active and retired military.  
The gates open at 9am, and the Pre-Race Show starts at 11am and features the Carolina Skydiving Team jumping the course with giant American flags, an official Swearing In Ceremony on the race course of US Army recruits, and patriotic music. 
It is a day for families, tradition, and fun including tailgating, Jack Russell Terrier races, a carousel, exotic animal petting zoo, military equipment displays, the Buffalo Soldiers, and the Paddock Shoppes retail village. 
Post time for the first race is 12:30pm, there are six races, with 35-40 minutes between each. 
The Colonial Cup, first run in 1970, was created to encourage and promote international racing at Springdale Race Course. The Carolina Cup Racing Association, a non-profit organization, relies on the Carolina Cup (in March) and the Colonial Cup races to fulfill its mission of operating Springdale Race Course as both an equestrian and tourism center. Springdale Race Course, owned by the state of South Carolina, is a world-renowned, 600-acre European style Thoroughbred racehorse training center that operates year-round and is home to Hall of Fame trainers Jonathan Sheppard and Janet Elliot. Famous equine residents have included Flat Top, Storm Cat, Forever Together, Zacchio and Ruffian.
For more information, please call 803-432-6513 or 800-780-8117 and visit www.carolina-cup.org.

For more information about top events in South Carolina take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in South Carolina

Friday, September 23, 2011

Polka Music by Day - German Bier Hall by Night

Oshkosh Oktoberfest is returning for a second year to the Leach Amphitheater in downtown Oshkosh on September 30, October 1 and 2. The Oktoberfest weekend is filled with entertainment and activities. 
Attendees will enjoy traditional German music throughout the three days from many bands including Dorf Kapelle, Tuba Dan Band, Happy Schnapps Combo, Jerry Schneider Band, Karl & the Country Dutchmen, and Oshkosh’s own Copper Box. German dancers from Milwaukee’s D’Oberlandler Dancers, a vendor shopping area, A Polka mass by the Maroszek Brothers, authentic German food from The Roxy Supper Club, and German bier will help make it a true traditional Oktoberfest celebration.  
The Festival also will include an exciting raffle sponsored by Cerebral Palsy of Mideast Wisconsin and a combined 2K Bier Run and Costume Contest. More activities include a cultural tent hosted by the German Club at UW-Oshkosh, children’s contests, a Masskrugstemmen (Beer Stein Holding Contest), Barrel Rolling contest, Dachshund wiener dog races, and the “Tapping of the Ceremonial Oktoberfest Keg.” The weekend will be fun for the entire family.  
Oshkosh Oktoberfest is organized by Oshkosh Festivals Inc., the same non-profit organization which also hosts Oshkosh Irish Fest. Proceeds from the event help fund local charitable agencies and help build the event for future years. Generous sponsors of this event include Boat Yard Bar and Grill, Hacker-Pschorr/Paulaner Brewery, Valley Graphics, and Thundera Multimedia. 
While many Wisconsin residents claim German ancestry, organizers are quick to point out that you don’t have to be German to attend the fest or to have fun.  The latest updates to the weekend’s schedule and activities can be found at www.oshkoshoktoberfest.com/ .  
For more information about top events in Wisconsin take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Wisconsin

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Top Chefs in First Hawaii Food & Wine Festival

Food and wine aficionados are invited to join world class chefs and top-tier vintners in paradise for the inaugural Hawai`i Food & Wine Festival that promises to combine breathtaking scenery with mouthwatering fare.
The premium Pacific bounty, sustainable food and agricultural traditions of the Hawaiian Islands are highlighted in the skilled hands of some 30 star chefs from the United States, Canada, Japan, Korea, India, Singapore and Australia. 
Set on the lush and celebrated island of O`ahu, this unforgettable three-day East-West epicurean experience scheduled September 29 to October 1 invites culinary connoisseurs to “Taste our love for the Land”.
The three-day extravaganza will feature three exclusive signature events: Streets of Asia: Morimoto and Friends at The Modern Honolulu; First Annual Halekulani Master Chefs Gala Dinner Series at the Halekulani; and From Mauka to Makai: Hawaii’s Sustainable Future at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, each showcasing dishes using local produce, seafood, beef, and poultry. 
Inspired by the ancient Hawaiian tradition of ahupua`a – an interdependent system where everything necessary for survival could be grown, gathered and exchanged locally – the Hawai`i Food & Wine Festival highlights the islandsʼ return to a sustainable eco-system of agriculture, environment and economy. Proceeds from the Festival will go to benefit the Hawai`i Agricultural Foundation and the Kapi`olani Community College Culinary Institute of the Pacific.
In addition to exciting cooking demos, wine tastings and culinary workshops, industry seminars and field excursions planned during the daytime, the Hawai`i Food & Wine Festival features signature dining experiences.
Two of Hawaiiʼs own James Beard award-winning chefs, Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong serve as event co-chairs for the Festival. Visit HawaiiFoodandWineFestival.com for more information.
For more information about top events in Hawaii take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Hawaii

Two Snohomish Events in Top 100

The Arlington Fly-In and Lights of Christmas have each been designated one of the Top 100 Events in North America for 2012 by the American Bus Association (ABA). 
The Arlington Fly-In every July is an airshow hosted in Arlington, Washington. Thousands of general aviation pilots fly in from around the US to attend. Warbird, antique and homebuilt aircraft are on display. There are rides and attractions for the entire family. 
The Lights of Christmas, held at Warm Beach Camp for 20 nights in December, is the largest holiday light display in the Northwest, combining live entertainment, children’s activities, food, and overnight getaway options.

“All of Snohomish County is thrilled to have two of our events voted to the Top 100 Events list for 2012,” said Amy Spain, executive director, Snohomish County Tourism Bureau. “This is the third consecutive year that the Lights of Christmas at Warm Beach has made the list and the fifth non-consecutive year for the Arlington Fly-In.”

ABA launched the Top 100 program in 1982 to help motorcoach and tour operators incorporate new and undiscovered events into their itineraries. It has since grown into one of the most sought-after lists by travel professionals, motorcoach operators and the traveling public. The list receives worldwide attention.

“Being on the Top 100 List truly highlights the tourism value of the Arlington Fly-In and Lights of Christmas,” said Peter J. Pantuso, CTIS, ABA president and CEO. “Both events gain a real boost in visibility, which enhances their future economic contribution to the destination and shines the tourism spotlight more brightly on surrounding events and attractions.”

Visit  www.snohomish.org/ for events and attractions in Snohomish County.
For more information about top events in Washington State take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Washington

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Corn Maze, ArtsFaire and Mariachi Music

There is always something going on in Las Cruces, New Mexico, from festivals and fiestas to art shows and annual events.

Children of all ages can explore a massive corn maze that is designed and cut using ultra-accurate GPS technology. As a family tradition for more than 11 seasons, the Mesilla Valley Corn Maze is just one of the activities at the Lyles Family Farm, which attracts more than 2,000 visitors every day. Children and families can choose from many activities, which include jumping on a hayride, climbing the tire hill, panning for precious stones, stuffing a scarecrow together, and many others. The maze is open from late September to late October.

As one of the region’s largest cultural events in the state with an average of 25,000 visitors annually, the Renaissance Artsfaire hosts a juried art show that showcases the arts, crafts and performances of local and regional artists – all with a medieval twist. The two-day celebration is held in Young Park during the first weekend of November (this year on Saturday, November 5 and Sunday, November 6) and features plenty of handmade goods, art, food, performances and fun for the whole family.
The best mariachis the world over gather each year for the Las Cruces International Mariachi Conference, a four-day festival that celebrates the culture of mariachi music through live performances from local and regional mariachi groups, as well as two concerts at the Las Cruces Pan-American Center. 
The village of Mesilla features Sunday Mariachi performances in September before the festivities begin and wraps them up with the “Mariachis y Mas” fiesta in the town plaza on November 11, 12 and 13.

Visit www.mustseelc.org/ for information about attractions and events in Las Cruces
For more information about top events in New Mexico take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in New Mexico

Smith Mountain Lake – Closer than You Think

Celebrate Smith Mountain Lake’s biggest event of the year, the 23rd Annual Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival on September 24 and 25. There will be 27 wineries and 85 food and craft vendors.
Whether you are a wine lover or just tempting your taste buds, Virginia wines offer flavors and styles to please every palette. Winemakers will be on hand to answer wine-related questions and assist guests with their sampling. 
Three popular live bands will be there to entertain festival-goers.  Saturday crowds will enjoy the band Super Hold. Sunday’s festivities feature the bands Barefoot West featuring Corey Hunley, and The Worx. 
The Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival will be held at LakeWatch Plantation in Moneta, directly off of Route 122, about 1 mile south of Hales Ford Bridge. This venue allows for easy access to the site, an abundance of free parking and more space for festival-goers to enjoy the festivities. 
Directions: Take Route 122 (Booker T. Washington Hwy ) south from the Hales Ford Bridge approximately 2.2 miles and turn left (east) into Lake Watch Plantation to SML Wine Festival parking. The Festival site is located on VA Route 122, three miles north of Westlake Town Center.
Smith Mountain Lake's great natural beauty – from the waters and woods to the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia – is closer than you think! Located in central Virginia along the Blue Ridge Mountains, Smith Mountain Lake is equidistant from Roanoke and Lynchburg. It’s a short 4-hour drive southwest of Washington D.C. and two hours north of Raleigh, NC.
Visit www.visitsmithmountainlake.com for more information.
For more information about top events in Virginia take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Virginia

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Family Fun in downtown Columbia

Mark your calendars – the last full weekend in September (September 23 and 24 this year) always means that the Southern Fried Festival is happening on the Courthouse Square in Columbia, Tennessee. Less than an hour south of Nashville off I-65, this event is a must for family fun. There’s something for everyone to enjoy.
Friday night kicks off with music on the KFC Stage. Entertainment this year is local band Smooth Vinyl, with Ricochet headlining the evening.   Community First Bank & Trust Kids Zone will be offering inflatables at no charge. A petting zoo and pony rides will be available for nominal fees. Arts and crafts vendors, the Marketplace, and the General Store will all be offering items to tempt your billfold. The Man Cave located in the City Parking Garage will offer all sorts of opportunities for fun.
Saturday’s schedule begins at 10am with a children’s parade and stage performance by the Zinghoppers for families. That will be followed by a cooking challenge and food demonstrations in the early afternoon.
When the food adventures are finished, the music starts up in two locations. Mule Town Records performers will be located at North Main and 6th Street. At the First Farmers Stage, local bands including the Community Band will keep toes tapping until 6pm. Attention then shifts to the KFC Stage where Bill Avery and the Uptown Band will get the crowd on their feet.  At 8pm the Kentucky Headhunters return after an absence of two years to wow the crowd. 
During all the fun of Friday and Saturday, the food vendors will have plenty of temptations for your savory or sweet tooth.  If you come hungry, you’re guaranteed to leave full and happy.
All this for only $3 admission for ages 12 and up. You can’t beat that price for a lot of entertainment!
Visit www.southernfriedfest.com for more information.
For more information about top events in Tennessee take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Tennessee

An Invitation to Watch History Unfold

Kansas' own Medicine Lodge Indian Peace Treaty Pageant on September 23, 24 and 25 commemorates the great Peace Council of 1867 between the U.S. Government and the proud civilization of the Plains Indians:  Apache • Arapaho • Cheyenne • Comanche • Kiowa.
The Medicine Lodge Peace Treaty re-enactment compresses 300 years of history into two hours of entertainment and education. Set against the panoramic backdrop of the timeless “Red Hills” and the Kansas sky, the Pageant commemorates the diverse cultures of the “Discoverers, Explorers, and Settlers” mixed with the Native peoples of the Central Plains.
In a natural amphitheater, near the actual site of the council where the Medicine River (named by the Kiowa for its medicinal waters) and Elm Creek flow together, the re-enactment takes place, and peace will come with time to the prairie.
The Pageant is an invitation to watch history unfold: the Spanish Discovery with Coronado; Lewis and Clark and Zebulon Pike come alive on the prairie, and now the natives are unsure of their place in their homelands. The settlers were moving West and thoughts of railroads were in the future. Not all were peaceful journeys in the covered wagons, and sometimes, the cavalry would rescue the settlers in an Indian attack. The longhorn cattle drive is another colorful scene.
The community of Medicine Lodge transforms into a frontier town, with parades and the Medicine Lodge Historical Night show, which re-enacts the Bank Robbery that took place in the1880’s, and Carry Nation who loved to smash saloons and any place that sold the “Demon Rum!” The setting for the Pageant and the entire celebration is wrapped in the rust-colored glory of the Gypsum Hills on the horizon.
Don’t miss the Annual Kansas Championship Ranch Rodeo, featuring working cowboys competing in events much like the day work on their ranches. The Cowboy Trappings and Trade show, Ranch Horse Show and All Women's Ranch Rodeo will make the event unforgettable.
The Peace Treaty Pageant is a Kansas 150 event.  See the web-site for more information:  www.peacetreaty.org
For more information about top events in Kansas take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Kansas

Monday, September 19, 2011

Welsh Eisteddfod in Hollywood

The 2011 West Coast Eisteddfod: Welsh Festival of Arts which celebrates Welsh identity and cultural expression takes place at the Barnsdall Art Park, 4800 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood, California from September 23 to 25.
A free outdoor festival on Saturday and Sunday includes Welsh food and drink, traditional and contemporary music, lectures, crafts, classes including Welsh language instruction, a Celtic marketplace, demonstrations in rugby, Welsh Corgis, genealogy, storytelling, a Welsh Mythology and Legend Art Show featuring over 30 artists, a Welsh-American traveling exhibit, and tours of the Hollyhock House created by Welsh-American Frank Lloyd Wright.
The opening ceremony is on Friday September 23 on the Barnsdall grounds and the Theatre from 6pm to 9:30pm with performances by Paul Child, Michael Aston of Gene Loves Jezebel, Monica Richards/InfraWarrior. The evening begins with a Druid blessing, followed by choral music from the Welsh Choir of Southern California. Also opening is the Welsh Mythology and Legend Art Show.
The Eisteddfod Prize Competitions in Poetry, Voice, Comedy, and Storytelling take place Saturday, September 24 in the Barnsdall Theatre from 3pm to 9pm.
The Film Festival and Lecture screens ‘Otherworld’, ‘Eldra’ and the ‘Quarryman’ Sunday September 25 in the Barnsdall Theatre from 1:30pm to 6:30pm. The special guest host is Aparna Sharma, Assistant Professor of Department of World Arts and Cultures at UCLA.
Every day there will be authentic Welsh food by Alex Catering, Welsh Cakes by The Welsh Baker, Sir Nathan's Red Dragon Lemonade (a charity stand to raise money for children’s cancer needs), and alcoholic refreshments by Oberon's Welsh Pirate Bar.
For more information visit www.aravenabovepress.com

It Takes a Village to Have an Oktoberfest

Seattle’s fall tradition, the Fremont Oktoberfest from September 23 to 25, is fun for everyone from the creative kids to the fair food foodie. In the free Village area, located just outside the entrance to the Fremont Oktoberfest Tasting Garden, guests can also groove to music on the Village Stage, shop the Village Market, or grab a pint in the Pyramid Breweries Village Garden.

In the Kids’ Area, young ones and their parents can feed their need for speed by racing decorated veggies in the Zucchini 500, bowl with sugar pumpkins, get their faces painted, or creatively carve pumpkins. For even more playful pumpkin fun, the Oktoberfest Village Stage will brew up non-stop entertainment including the infamous Texas Chainsaw Pumpkin Carving contest. 

For the shoppers, two dozen vendors will be lined up with local wares, artsy crafts, autumn jewelry, and fall apparel in the Village Market. When the shopping fun is done or you just need a break to toast fall, head to the Pyramid Breweries Village Beer Garden.

For the foodies, this festival is an ode to the German bratwurst! Pair it up with a block of coveted curly fries and you’ve got yourself a true Fremont Oktoberfest feast. Inside the Tasting Garden, taste even more fair food and Fremont specialties.

Last, but not least, Sunday becomes Dogtoberfest in the Fremont Oktoberfest Village. Find four-legged pals accompanying their owners in the Fremont Oktoberfest 5K, strutting their stuff in the CityDog Magazine Cover Model Contest or lapping it up at the doggie water tasting in the MOViN 92.5 Lounge. Sunday attendees can also participate in the Fremont Oktoberfest Street Scramble, a scavenger hunt through the Fremont neighborhood.

For more information, visit FremontOktoberfest.com 
For more information about top events in Washington State take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Washington

Friday, September 16, 2011

Maine Lakes Brew Fest

A brew festival is a celebration of beer. And with some 26 brewers on hand to answer questions at the Maine Lakes Brew Fest on Saturday, September 24, at Point Sebago Resort, Casco, Maine, it's an opportunity for the beer novice and curious to learn more and to have some fun. 
Sponsored by the Greater Bridgton Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce, the 8th annual Maine Lakes Brew Fest is a beer tasting extravaganza with over 100 different brews to sample, gourmet food from some 15 food vendors, music by the Disclaimers, Olde Mill Tavern Afterburners, and Tux Burke as MC and Vocalist, and an Artisan's Craft Show. Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the gate and include a souvenir glass, 10 sample tickets and voting coupons for your favorite brew or wine. 
Point Sebago Resort, located on the shores of pristine Sebago Lake in Maine’s Lakes Region, is the perfect venue for this tasting event. It's easily accessible off Route 302 and offers on-site parking.
Here are other upcoming events in the region. 
The Fryeburg Fair (October 2 to 9) is Maine’s largest Agricultural Fair.  
The Waterford Fall Foliage Road Race and Chili Festival on October 9 is the hottest festival in the Lakes Region area and takes place during the Waterford Fall Foliage Road Race.
Looking for a unique way to get into the holiday spirit? Then don a winter jacket and boots, choose a spot along Main Street in Bridgton and enjoy the Festival of Lights parade on Decrmber 3.
For more details on the Brew Fest call 207-647-3472 or visit www.mainelakesbrewfest.com  or for information about the Greater Bridgton Lakes Region visit www.mainelakeschamber.com

For more information about top events in Maine take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Maine.

Fête the Fall Harvest in Newport, Rhode Island

As the summer sun starts to give way to milder coastal breezes, and the tree tops are painted in vivid hues of crimson red, brilliant yellow and burnt orange, Newport and Bristol County enter into what is arguably its most majestic of seasons. 
Apple and pumpkin picking at the local farms is a family favorite, and don't forget to fête the fall harvest with a fun-filled hayride and at the many upcoming festivals. 
There’s no hayride on the water, but the Newport International Boat Show, one of the largest in-water boat shows in the country, is on right now (September 15 to 18). Savor the most sophisticated wine and food festival on the East Coast at the Newport Mansions Food & Wine Festival (September 23 to 25). Browse through a colorful marketplace of fine and functional art on Newport's scenic waterfront at Newport Arts Festival (September 24 and 25).
On the first two days of October enjoy HarborFest where a waterfront block party welcomes fall with locally grown food, live music, art and fun for all ages. The Norman Bird Sanctuary Harvest Fair is an old-fashioned autumn Fair with crafters, food, games, animals, hay rides, and its legendary mud pit.
The inaugural Oysterfest on October 9 is at historic Fort Adams overlooking Newport Harbor and Narragansett Bay and you can raise your steins and toast the flavors of fall at the 3-day International Oktoberfest (October 8 to 10).
Bowen's Wharf Seafood Festival (October 15 and 16) honors the harvest of the sea with copious amounts of seafood, continuous live music and family fun, all beneath the Wharf's colorful tents.
For a complete line-up of autumn events, travel packages and last minute deals, visit www.GoNewport.com
For more information about top events in Rhode Island take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Rhode Island

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Honoring Eastern European Roots & Autumn Equinox

The autumn equinox, a time of balance between day and night, heralds in the celebration of Vinotok in Crested Butte, Colorado from September 18 to 24.  
Meaning “fall wine festival” in Slovenian, Vinotok culminates on September 24 after several days of celebrating and commemorates the bounty of the summer harvest and gathering of the community before the long winter ahead.
It is a time of village feasting, of forgetting the woes of yesterday and honoring traditional Eastern European roots. In the midst of the 26th annual celebration is a colorful array of medieval characters, a street theatre performance, storytelling, and music. 
The origins of Vinotok began when creator and now “Godmother” of the event, Marcie Telander, sat around the pot belly stove at Tony’s Conoco, listening to the “old-timers” of Crested Butte tell stories from their native lands of Austria, Hungary, Scotland, Ireland, Norway, Italy and Slovenia. 
A common thread emerged. Many of these cultures had a wine festival in the fall when, as they were putting down wine for the upcoming year, the old wine from the previous year had to be drunk.  They roasted a goat, told tales and danced polka.  A fire was always present, a vestige of ancient cultures asking the sun to not stay away too long.  
It was typically on the fall equinox, a time of planetary balance, and in those cold countries, the start of the new year.  They celebrated what they harvested – the hay, children and stories of those who had created roots in a new land.
For more details of the Vinotok celebration and to find out more about other area events or to book personalized vacation packages, call the Gunnison-Crested Butte Tourism Association’s toll-free line (800) 814-8893, or visit www.gunnisoncrestedbutte.com/
For more information about top events in Colorado take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Colorado.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Travel Back to the 18th Century

Have you ever wondered what daily life was like during Colonial America? In this time of economic uncertainty, do you sometimes long for the 'simple life' when everything was handmade in America and lasted for many years? 
This year's Penn's Colony Festival is designed to encourage visitors and enthusiasts to participate in a 'Living History Challenge' before and during the Festival which will be held on September 17 and 18 and again on September 24 and 25 in Saxonburg, Butler County.
Each year, Penn's Colony Festival features artists and musical entertainment reminiscent of the historic time period of the French and Indian War. Celebrating its 28th year and set on 12 easy walking, tree shaded acres, Penn's Colony brings history to life.  
Through arts and crafts, entertainment, family activities such as games and pony rides, and more, Penn's Colony has something for everyone.  The marketplace features 150 exhibits from juried artisans offering quality, handmade in America crafts, jewelry, food, furniture and functional items from their shops nestled along the village streets.  
"This is not just another craft show," says founder Beth Rush.  "This is an opportunity to travel back to the days when people made things that lasted.  You can see and feel the passion in the work of these artisans.  You can talk with them and ask them why they do what they do.  They'll be glad to share their stories of how they made the decision to act on their passions to create and preserve the handmade-in-America arts."
Penn's Colony is located on Saxonburg Boulevard, just off Route 228 East, outside Saxonburg in Butler County.  For directions and other details, visit www.pennscolony.com or call 724-352-9922.
For more information about top events in Pennsylvania take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Pennsylvania

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Bringing the Alps to the Rockies

The 2011 Breckenridge Oktoberfest, set for September 16 to 18, will this year offer new entertainment, VIP packages and a larger footprint that will allow for more space and additional beer-pouring capabilities at the growing event. 
In its 17th year, Breckenridge Oktoberfest brings the Alps to the Rockies with a weekend of parties, Paulaner Bier, authentic German cuisine and opportunities to view fall foliage.
The weekend kicks off Friday, September 16 with the Paulaner Brewmaster’s Dinner featuring a six-course gourmet German meal that includes beer or wine paired with each course. Tickets are $75 per person; the dinner typically sells out in advance.
Saturday and Sunday, September 17 and 18, Breckenridge’s Main Street closes and a street party comes to life with traditional costumes, German food, Oompah and polka music, Bavarian dancers, children’s activities, a keg-tapping ceremony, 5k run and plenty of Paulaner beer served in commemorative steins manufactured and shipped from Munich, Germany. 
The Breckenridge Brewery will serve seasonal microbrews; Paulaner and Toasted Head will pour a selection of wines. VIP packages include steins, beer tickets, hors d' oeuvres and a private, shaded seating area with additional beer and wine pours. 
“Breckenridge’s Oktoberfest has become one of the largest in the Rocky Mountains. The party draws repeat attendees from across the country.” said Breckenridge Resort Chamber events director Sandy Metzger. “With each passing year, we aim to enhance our signature events and the 2011 Oktoberfest additions will accommodate increasing attendance and allow for an all-around better experience.”
Visit BreckenridgeOktoberfest.com for a complete schedule of events. 
For more information about top events in Colorado take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Colorado.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Spotlighting the Architects of American Music

Through hell and high water, the Ponderosa Stomp has spent the last decade bringing icons of American music back to the stage, shining a spotlight on the architects of songbooks that are part of the nation's collective musical DNA.  
2011 marks the 10th anniversary of the Stomp, which has expanded over the years from a 2-day concert to include a film festival, music conference, record hop and a DJ dance party. 
On September 16 and 17, the Ponderosa Stomp takes over a new venue in Louisiana, the Howlin’ Wolf, while moving the music conference, film festival and record hop into a central locale, the Renaissance Arts Hotel. 
Celebrating the seminal songs that formed the backbone of American pop culture from the post-war era through the generations is not for the meek of heart  – founder Dr. Ira (Dr. Ike) Padnos and his fellow members of the Mystic Knights of the Mau Mau specialize in finding performers missing from the stage for decades as well as reuniting the bands who’ve not performed together in decades.
This milestone year will be hailed  with tributes to the essential New Orleans music man Cosimo Matassa, Stax Records, Excello Records and Southern music with Allen Toussaint, William Bell, Big Jay McNeely, Eddie Floyd, Lady Bo, Sir Mack Rice, Lazy Lester, Dave Bartholomew, The Bo-Keys w/ Skip Pitts and Howard Grimes, Carol Fran, Classie Ballou, Warren Storm, The Relatives and more. 
For details on the line up click here: www.ponderosa_stomp_10_concert.php

For more information about top events in Louisiana take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Louisiana.

Exploring the "Wild West" of San Diego's East County

San Diego's East County region conjures up images of the Wild West when cowboys, pioneers and prospectors set their sights on this vast inviting frontier with its quaint rural towns nestled amongst rolling hills, alpine mountains and desolate desert expanse.
Visitors can experience this exciting chapter of San Diego's pastoral past at various historic sites and towns throughout East County, as well as at community events that celebrate the western days of yesteryear.
The historic town of Julian located in the picturesque Cuyamaca Mountains, was founded after the Civil War when displaced Confederate veterans from Georgia headed West to seek their fortunes in this new, mostly unsettled land. 
Today, visitors can explore Julian's Gold Rush past at four area gold mines and the Julian Pioneer Museum, as well as on historic walking tours and much more. Julian celebrates its rich storied past with two major annual community events:
Julian Gold Rush Days, which takes place Father's Day weekend in June, celebrates the discovery of gold with a number of fun-filled activities, including gold panning, gold mine tours, historic skits, old fashioned games and more.
While other nearby gold mining towns disappeared over time, Julian's pioneers stayed, farmed the rich land and continued to thrive with the production of its newest asset: apples. The town celebrates the annual Julian Fall Apple Harvest from mid-September through mid-November, a tradition begun in 1909. Autumn is one of the most popular times of year to visit this delightful mountain community steeped in western charm.
For more information on East County and the entire San Diego region, visit www.sandiego.org/eastcounty
For more information about top events in California take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in California.

Friday, September 9, 2011

8-Day World Music Festival

The largest and longest running festival of international music in the United States returns with eight days of free and low-cost concerts throughout Chicago from September 15 to 22.
The City of Chicago transforms into a global center for the best of today’s international music when the 13th annual World Music Festival: Chicago 2011 returns. 
Presented by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE), in partnership with the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture (COTC), the city-wide, multi-venue, eight-day festival features acclaimed musicians from more than 40 countries. 
Featuring traditional and contemporary music from diverse cultures, the performances and events include a combination of free and low-cost ticketed concerts, many of which are family friendly.
The festival kicks-off in Grant Park’s Spirit of Music Garden as part of Chicago SummerDance, followed by seven jam-packed days of performances and events in Chicago’s neighborhood parks, clubs, cultural centers and downtown venues, culminating with the “One World Under One Roof” finale featuring multiple concerts held throughout the Chicago Cultural Center from 6:30 to 11:30pm.
Highlights include the Chicago debut of Staff Benda Bilili, an extraordinary group of paraplegic street musicians from the Democratic Republic of Congo who perform on homemade instruments, make their Chicago debut as part of their first U.S. Tour; The Creole Choir of Cuba (Caribbean); Boubacar Traore Trio (Mali); Sounds & Rhythms of Afghanistan; Esma Redžepova (Macedonia); Movits! (Sweden); Mad Professor (UK), among many others.
Since its inception, World Music Festival: Chicago has attracted more than a half million concertgoers and has presented more than 500 artists and ensembles from over 75 countries, making it the largest international music festival in the United States.
The full schedule can be viewed at WorldMusicFestivalChicago.org
For more information about top events in Illinois take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in Illinois

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Experience Fall in North Dakota

September means different things to different people. It’s a time to celebrate the bountiful harvest that’s coming to a close, reminisce with friends and neighbors at the end of another summer and reflect on our lives and how they’ve been affected after the events of September 11, 2001. 
September is a time when many small communities come together to celebrate another bountiful harvest. Edgeley, Hazen, Abercrombie, Casselton and Enderlin host festivals in September, and Grand Forks caps the week-long Potato Bowl with a University of North Dakota football game. And you’re sure to find something unique and food galore at Bismarck’s Downtown Street Fair.
Few things are more colorful than outfits worn by Native American and Scandinavian dancers. Two of the largest events in the nation celebrate the pageantry of these unique cultures in North Dakota. The United Tribes International Powwow brings dancers and singers from around the world to Bismarck, while Minot becomes the center of the Scandinavian universe during Norsk Høstfest.
The rhythmic pumping of the old steam engines takes people back to a time when the harvest was as much manual labor as it was automated. People still gather to see how it was done in days gone by at events like the Central North Dakota Steam Threshers Reunion at New Rockford, the Stump Lake Village Threshing Bee at Pekin and Sodbuster Days Fall Harvest at Fort Ransom. Cavalier will host a Pioneer Machinery and Tractor Trek.  Each event has ongoing demonstrations, food and displays of how prairie folk got things done generations ago,

Everybody remembers where they were on that fateful day 10 years ago. Along with other memorial services in North Dakota, the International Peace Garden in Dunseith is planning a 911 Memorial ceremony that includes dignitaries, first responders, military and area bands.  
For more information on North Dakota events visit NDtourism.com
For more information about top events in North Dakota take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in North Dakota.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

An Event for Every Taste

Stretching across the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Cascade Highlands has interesting September events and festivals in store for visitors.

The Stomp Festival is held in Moratock Park each September on the riverbanks of the Dan River in Danbury, NC, where crafters, musicians and vendors gather to celebrate the river and the arts. The festival offers crafts, food, music, kayaking demonstrations, children’s activities and more. Stokes Stomp this year is on Saturday and Sunday September 10 and 11. Admission is free.
The Mountain Heritage Festival in Sparta on September 17 is for the craft lover with music, food, crafts, children’s activities, antique cars, farm equipment, and the crowning of the Possum Queen. Expert expositions of all kinds are demonstrated including cider pressing, chain-saw carving, blacksmithing, old-fashioned corn meal grinding, and Christmas tree decorating. Admission is free.
Visitors from across the country will flock to Mount Airy from September  22 to 25 for a four-day celebration of yesteryear known as the Mayberry Days Festival. It allows fans of The Andy Griffith Show to enjoy a glimpse of life in that nostalgic place known as "Mayberry", while tracing the footsteps of Mount Airy's most famous son. Several actors from the show will make appearances. 
Pumpkin growers from far and wide come to Elkin each year to compete for the “heavyweight title” in several categories for growing produce. This year’s Yadkin Valley Pumpkin Festival on September 24 is an official weigh-off for the Great Pumpkin Common Wealth, a national body overseeing competitions in giant pumpkin and vegetable growing. The festival features craft vendors, children’s activities, pie-eating contest, and food. Admission is free. 
For more information visit www.trueblueridge.org 
For more information about top events in North Carolina take a look at the Top Events USA selection of the annual main festivals and events in North Carolina.