5 Fall Festivals to Enjoy in Connecticut

Connecticut Renaissance Faire Fall
••• The Connecticut Renaissance Faire is held each fall in North Haven, Connecticut. Media photo by Eric Tetreault, courtesy of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire

Fall is the perfect time of year for festivals in Connecticut. The heat of summer has subsided, nature provides a colorful event backdrop at no charge, and leaf peeping along the drive to the festival can be as much fun as the event itself.

Connecticut is the third smallest state in the nation, so if you live in or near New England's southernmost state, the added bonus is that any Connecticut festival is a short, scenic drive away.

Here are five fall festivals in Connecticut that make for perfect autumn day trips:

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    CT Antique Machinery Association
    ••• Watch, as volunteers bring antique machines to life during the Connecticut Antique Machinery Association's fall festival in Kent, CT. © 2017 Kim Knox Beckius

    Cool, picturesque fall days leave many folks longing for simpler times. The Connecticut Antique Machinery Association's Annual Fall Festival provides a glimpse of technology long before the harried days of computers, cell phones and other relentless gadgets. You'll see hundreds of restored antique machines in operation. The festival also features blacksmith and sawmill demonstrations, exhibits and food. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for kids ages 6 to 12 and free for children 5 and under.

    Friday, Saturday and Sunday, September 22-24, 2017 (rain or shine)

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    Connecticut Renaissance Faire Fall
    ••• The Connecticut Renaissance Faire is held each fall in North Haven, Connecticut. Media photo by Eric Tetreault, courtesy of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire

    In Connecticut, fall is the season when days are warm and knights are playful! At the Connecticut Renaissance Faire in Lebanon, CT, you can enjoy themed weekends, explore a Medieval marketplace and watch shows ranging from music to magic to jousting. Admission is $15 for adults, $10 for children ages 7 to 15 and free for children under 7. Watch the Connecticut Renaissance Faire Facebook page for special event announcements and ways to save on admission.

    Weekends, plus Labor Day and Columbus Day, September 2-October 9, 2017; 10:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.

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    49th Annual Apple Harvest Festival

    Celebrate the annual apple harvest at this street fair in Southington, CT,   featuring an array of apple products, food booths, arts and crafts, carnival rides, eating contests, musical performances, a parade, fireworks and more. You can even cross bed racing off your bucket list. Admission and parking are free.

    September 29-October 1 and October 6-8, 2017

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    Learn how to cook with and grow garlic, buy freshly harvested bulbs, and taste everything from deep fried garlic to garlic ice cream at this fall festival in Bethlehem, CT, that takes garlic to extremes. Rides, games and live music are also part of the fun at the Bethlehem Fairgrounds. Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for seniors and $1 for children under 12.

    October 7-8, 2017

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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    Chowder Days at Mystic Seaport in CT
    ••• Sample chowders and other clam treats during the annual fall Chowder Days festival at Connecticut's Mystic Seaport. Media photo courtesy of Mystic Seaport

    Piping hot chowder soothes the soul on a crisp fall day. Try several different varieties of chowder and bisque at Mystic Seaport's annual fall Chowder Days in Mystic, CT. The festival is included with admission to Mystic Seaport, but there is an additional charge for the food. The weekend also features live music, scarecrow making, crafts and games on the green. Enjoy a horse and carriage ride for an additional fee.

    October 7-9, 2017, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.