Another fall season begins, bringing with it cooler temperatures but a rise in opportunity for seasonal family-fun in Gatlinburg. Nominated by USA Today’s 10Best as one of the “Best Destinations for Fall Foliage,” Gatlinburg is recognized as a fan-favorite for experiencing the greenery of summer transform into the warm hues of autumn. Along with a beautiful leaf-peeping season, visitors can also find a wide variety of seasonal events to plan to enjoy, celebrating the coming of fall.
Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival
Adorning Gatlinburg in a tapestry of red, yellow, and orange, local businesses decorate storefronts festively. The downtown Parkway is also lined with life-size 3-dimensional scarecrow people creating ample opportunity to find the perfect picture-worthy spot. Visitors are invited to vote for their favorite harvest decorations as local businesses compete to win the “People’s Choice Award.” During weekends of September and October, Smoky Mountain Tunes and Tales hold nightly performances along the Parkway, including storytelling, traditional dance, and song. Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival begins in mid-September and will continue through mid-November.
Sunrise at the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park
Experience the Smokies like no other during Sunrise at the Gatlinburg SkyLift Park. On Wednesday mornings through October 26th, the park offers VIP tickets, allowing early entry onto the chairlift. Upon arrival at sunrise, guests can enjoy birdseye views of downtown Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains illuminated by the golden rays of sunrise.
Oktoberfest at Ober Gatlinburg
An annual celebration for over a decade, Ober Gatlinburg hosts Oktoberfest, steeped in Bavarian tradition through October 30th. Upon entry, the park offers free shows daily featuring the Smoky Mountain Oompah Band. Traditional Bavarian food and drink will be served at Seasons of Ober Restaurant, as well as at the festival’s Bier Garten.
Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair
Featuring more than 200 artisans displaying their craft from across the United States, the Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair celebrates the rich artistry of the Great Smoky Mountains. Hosted at the Gatlinburg Convention Center, the gathering of talented artists provides visitors with ample opportunity to take a piece home with pottery, woodwork, artwork, glassblowing, and more around every corner. The fall fair begins October 13th and will run through October 30th.
Gatlinburg Garden Club Wine Fest
Wine and dine into the autumn season at the Gatlinburg Garden Club Wine Fest on October 15th. Held on the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies Plaza, savor the local flavor of ciders, meads, and wine. Guests can expand their palette with wine pairing lessons while taking home a locally-made wine glass as a souvenir. All proceeds will go to the Gatlinburg Garden Club Annual Scholarship Fund.
Astra Lumina at Anakeesta
Officially opening to the public on a NEW date, October 21st, Astra Lumina brings a cosmic experience to the heart of the Smokies. As the first and only of its kind in the United States, Astra Lumina at Anakeesta showcases an enchanted night walk culminated of light and sound projections allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the starry, night sky.
View full events calendar here.