Nashville Annual October Event Guide

An Annual Event Guide to October Events in Nashville

A list of Annual October Events in Nashville that includes some of the Best & Most Well-liked Annual Events that take place in and around Nashville in the month of October.

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    From late September into early November, Nashville offers tons of festive opportunities during the Autumn and Halloween Season. There is an unlimited supply of Haunted Houses, Ghostly Tours, Pumpkin Patches, Fall Foliage Hikes, and Corn Mazes to be found and explored in the Middle Tennessee Area.

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    At this not-so-black-tie event, guests opt for zebra stripes and leopard prints over pinstripes and penguin suits as they enjoy the beauty of the Nashville Zoo at twilight. This benefit is normally held in early October.

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    Photo Credit: USN

    What began over a decade ago as a desire to bring artists and their artwork to University School of Nashville for a school fundraiser has evolved into a nationally respected art show that attracts loyal patrons and newcomers to view work by the carefully selected group of talented emerging and established artists.

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    Photo Credit: Artober
    Artober Nashville is a month-long celebration of arts and culture in Nashville, designed to inform and inspire the community’s awareness of and participation in the array of activities during the month of October.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/George De Sota

    The Annual Belmont Mansion Fashion Show, held in late October, benefits the Belmont Mansion Association, a group of individuals dedicated to the preservation of the historic home of Nashville’s first fashionista, Adelicia Acklen

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    The Loveless Cafe host an annual Biscuits & Bluegrass fall festival every October. This festival usually runs all day long with plenty of family events, music, biscuit eating contest, and plenty of impromptu pickin' parties.

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    Photo Credit: Rick Diamond/Getty Images

    The Annual "Bouquets for Breast Cancer" champagne and strawberries reception is normally held the first week of October at Rebel Hill Florist and benefits the Tennessee Breast Cancer Coalition (TBCC). In addition, throughout the month of October, Rebel Hill Florist normally continues to donate a portion of their sales to TBCC through a variety of special offers.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images
    Brain Matters is an interactive exhibit that has in depth information about the brain, how it works and information about diseases and disorders. This exhibit consists of three stations that allow you to spend as much time as you like delving into the mystery of the human brain. Located in 100 Oaks Mall (upstairs), this free Vanderbilt exhibit is open during regular mall hours.
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    Photo Credit: Buchanan Log House

    The Buchanan Log House host monthly lectures on the 3rd Sunday of each month. These historical lectures feature a different speaker each month and highlight the people and times that define the local Donelson-Hermitage area. Free and open the public.

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    Photo Courtesy of Kaleidoscope Media

    The Carriage House Music Series is known for having some of Nashville's best songwriters in attendance and performing. This bi-annual Nashville event has taken a bit of Nashville's rich history and blended it with one of Nashville favorite crafts to create a winning mixture of a great night of Nashville Entertainment.

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    Courtesy Tennessee Department of Tourist Development/Gary Layda

    Formally known as Celebration of Cultures, the Celebrate Nashville Cultural Festival celebrates and embraces the cultural diversity of our community by encouraging understanding, appreciation and respect of the cultures of the Greater Nashville community through a fun-filled day of music, dance, food, children's activities, a marketplace, and other educational components.

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    Clarksville Oktoberfest

    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Johannes Simon

    Clarksville Oktoberfest is held the first weekend of October.Upwards of 10,000 attend this festival with true German flair, which features German food, music, dancing and fun.

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    Photo Courtesy Tennessee Department of Tourist Development

    This event is held normally the first weekend of October, in Historic Collinsville, and features nineteenth-century, living-history, costumed tour-guides, battle reenactments and also includes a variety Pioneer Activities including a special Children's Day of hayrides, face painting and games.

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    Photo Credit: Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
    The Commodore Quake is Vanderbilt University's Homecoming festival. This annual even takes place every October and the festivities are sure to generate buzz beyond campus borders ever year. The Quake has a the tradition of showcasing music's most popular acts.
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    Photo Credit: Nashville Public Library
    Every summer beginning in Mid-August and running into October, the Nashville Public Library hosts a series of free Courtyard Concerts. These concerts normally take place once a week during lunch time hours at the Nashville Public Library.
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    CyberSphere at the Renaissance Center offers very impressive year-round brilliant laser light and planetarium shows with an infinite array of colors, scans the dome with incredible speed, creating some of the most unusual and colorful imagery in the world. Cost is normally under $10.
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    Photo Credit: Webster PR

    Traditional country music fans have the opportunity to enjoy a very talented line-up at the Ernest Tubb Midnite Jamboree, which broadcasts LIVE from the landmark Texas Troubadour Theatre (2416 Music Valley Drive, Nashville) every Saturday night beginning at midnight. Admission to these shows is FREE and many artists typically stick around after the show to sign autographs in the lobby.​

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    Fall Charity Golf Scramble

    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    The Fall Charity Golf Scramble is hosted annually by the Kiwanis Club of Madison and is normally held in the middle of October. This event raises money for scholarships to be awarded at the end of each school year. It’s a great opportunity to skip work, play 18 holes in the fall sunshine and support the youth of the Madison!

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Every month, local art galleries throughout downtown host receptions and art openings with most all offering free wine and other refreshments. As an added bonus, they also provide free shuttles between the galleries!
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    Presented by Downtown Clarksville Association, each ArtWalk event is normally held on the first Thursday of the month and highlights local artists at the many boutiques, restaurants & of course the Roxy in Downtown Clarksville Folks can enjoy local art on display in various venues.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    On the first Friday of every month in and around downtown Franklin you can tour the downtown Franklin art scene with their Franklin Tour of the Arts. This evening tour is normally free and, as an added bonus, you can always get unlimited pick-up and drop-off service on their trolly service for a minimum charge too.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    Normally held on the first Saturday of each month, The Frist Center offers a monthly Architecture Tour for those interested in learning more about this Nashville landmark building–the former Downtown Nashville post office and a prominent Nashville architectural treasure from the Art Deco period.
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    Photo Credit: Marc Romanelli/Getty Images
    The Frist Center for the Visual Arts are host to Senior Mondays - a series of events for those who admit their "senior" status. On these days, gallery admission is 50% off of regular admission for seniors. Special gallery talks, activities, and other discounts are also normally scheduled for/on Senior Mondays too. Senior Mondays are normally held on the third Monday of the month.
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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    Some of Middle Tennessee's finest bluegrass musicians perform under the light of a full moon - really! True to the Bluegrass form they will also have numerous jam sessions taking place at any given time in addition to performances on the main stage. Full Moon Pickin' Parties normally run annually from May through October.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Johannes Simon

    The Germantown Oktoberfest is filled with music, dancing, arts & crafts, historic home and church tours, antique exhibits and much more. There is absolutely heaps of authentic German music, food and drinks to be found during this Annual event, held the second Saturday in October. This Germantown event is actually two separate events, one is the Oktoberfest and the other is the Germantown Street Festival- but both are held in Germantown and during the same weekend.

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    Glee for Angel Tree

    Photo Credit: Gray PR
    Glee for Angel Tree features local high school choral groups engaging the audience with exceptional vocals, dance and digitized stage sets as they sing to benefit The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Program. Angel Tree Program gives individuals and partnering corporations an opportunity to adopt less fortunate children and seniors and provide them with personalized gifts and necessities during the holiday season.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Sergio Dionisio

    Cheekwood Botanical Garden & Museum of Art  host their annual “Goblins in the Garden” event every year in late October. Preschoolers and young goblins are invited to wear their favorite spooky or zany costume and head out to Cheekwood for Halloween fun.

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Goodlettsville's Fall Music Festival and State BBQ Championship Cook-Off held the 2nd weekend in October. Live music, crafts, great food, children's attractions, and a state BBQ cook-off! A great time for the entire family in beautiful Moss-Wright Park.
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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    The Grand Ole Opry host its annual Birthday Bash every October at the Grand Ole Opry House, by offering a star-packed October Homecoming Celebration that includes tons of entertainment including tours of The Grand Ole Opry, autograph sessions, visits to the Opry Museum, and much more.

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    The Grand Ole Opry, one of the worlds longest running radio shows, normally offers several live shows a week including shows every Friday & Saturday Night as well as a Tuesday Night show. Every year, in late fall, the show leave the Grand Ole Opry House) and returns to the Ryman Auditorium Stage for a few months, normally from November - January.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Mark Wilson

    To combat lung cancer and honor the memory of Hank Thompson, one of Hendersonville and Sumner County's most dedicated public servants. Trek and Treat is a Halloween Festival which also offers a 5K Run/Walk.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Sergio Dionisio

    The Tennessee State Museum’s annual ghost story festival, Haunted Museum, is normally held the week before Halloween. This is a free family oriented event that normally takes place during daylight hours.

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    Photo credit: Tennessee Department of Tourist Development

    This annual championship cook-off is held every year in late October in Lynchburg, usually the third week of October. Teams will include international entrants and all recipes feature Jack Daniel's. Festivities include Food booths, games, crafts, pig races, music and more.​

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Jammin in the Alley is a free concert series that takes place in Historic Downtown Clarkville's Strawberry Alley every third Friday from May to October. Music begins at 7p.m. and it's free to the public.
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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    Come enjoy the downtown skyline, sunset, lights, and some of the city's premiere live entertainment. Plenty of free parking in Lot R, under the pedestrian street walking bridge. Every Third Sunday (May thru October) 5:30pm-8:00pm, at the Cumberland Park Amphitheater, beside the Titans Stadium on the riverfront.

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    Beachaven Winery has Jazz on the Lawn concerts that are held on most Saturday Nights from April- October, offer free admission with free parking too. Of course you're encouraged to buy a bottle of Beachaven wine to enjoy with the music.

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    Photo Credit: Webster PR
    Jump in the car, take a drive into the country and pull off for a refreshing stop at Larry’s Country Diner. Join the folks at the “diner” set for some spontaneous music, guests and a full order of fun. Reservations to Larry’s Country Diner are free although they always tend to go extremely fast.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Rusty Russell
    Live on the Green is an environmentally friendly concert series that takes place every Thursday night (for 6 weeks) on the Public Square Plaza. Admission is free and the concert usually kicks off at 6 p.m.
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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Living History Fall Encampment held at Moss-Wright Park, Goodlettsville in mid-October.A 1780 encampment with re-enactors in period dress camping, cooking and working with authentic food and gear. Held at Mansker's Station, one of Tennessee's first settlements. The reproduction fort is considered to be one of the most authentic in the nation.
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    Photo Credit: Metro Parks

    Explore what's happening this month at one of the many Nashville Metro Parks. Metro parks offers a variety of programs and events throughout Davidson County - there's something for everyone!

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Rosie Greenway
    The Brown Bag Lunch Special Concert Series are usually scheduled from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. every second and fourth Thursday of the month at the Centennial Park Event Shelter. These free lunch hour concerts run from April to November and feature a diverse group of musicians as well as a variety of healthy, fresh and delicious Brown Bag Lunches for under $10.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Rick Diamond

    Dierks Bentley's Miles & Music for Kids, held in mid-October, is a motorcycle ride and event that normally begins at Harley-Davidson of Cool Springs and goes through beautiful Williamson County and Downtown Nashville. The ride ends at Riverfront Park for a two to three hour concert.

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    Enjoy some of Nashville's most accomplished and celebrated artists as they perform at the Frist Center on Thursday and Friday evenings. Musicians performing classical, jazz, Latin, Americana, bluegrass and environmental electronic music, as well as some of the area's accomplished singer/songwriters, contribute their talents to the Frist Center each week.
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    Photo Courtesy of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
    The annual Music & Molasses Festival, held the third weekend in October at the Ellington Agricultural Center in Nashville, offers molasses making, Bluegrass music, story-tellers, country cloggers, a grist mill, traditional crafts for sale, food including homemade cakes and pies, free buggy rides, log cabin activities for children with a trail hike, pony rides, animals to touch and much more.
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    Photo Credit: Campbell Entertainment Group

    Featuring some of Music City’s most talented up-and-coming artists, Music City On Stage! is packed with a wide range of hits and styles, showcasing why Nashville really is Music City! Held at the Studio Gallery at Fontanel each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings from 7-9p.m. Tickets include entry to the show, a home-cooked meal and a voucher (good for one year) to tour Fontanel Mansion. Advance reservations are strongly encouraged.

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    Photo Credit: Kaleidoscope Media

    Music City Roots is a weekly show built on the Americana music scene and the legacy of WSM's historic roots in live radio. It airs every Wednesday night from live from the Loveless Barn and features three to four artists in 30-minute segments, followed by a free-form "Loveless Jam."

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    © Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Every year, both, the Music Valley Antiques Market & Tailgate Antique Show are held in the third week of October, on Music Valley Drive, in the Opryland Area. Hundreds of antique dealers converge for a weekend of showcasing, buying and selling.
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    Musicians Corner is a central point, free and open to all, where Music City gathers to perform and enjoy its music. Music in all forms. Music to entertain us, build bridges within our community, welcome our visitors and connect us with the world. Free music is offered at Nashville's Centennial on Saturdays in May, June, September and October.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Jerome Pollos

    The NAIA Pow Wow and Fall Festival, which always begins on the Third Saturday in October, attracts people from all over the state of Tennessee. This event is billed in Indian Country as the largest Pow Wow east of the Mississippi. Each October Indians from around the Nation gather to share part of their culture.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Nick Clements

    The Nashville Cares AIDS Walk mobilizes individuals and teams from business and community groups to ask friends, family and colleagues to help fight HIV and AIDS locally. The AIDS Walk is a relatively easy three miles in the park and downtown streets. Free, family-friendly festivities include health & wellness fair, kids’ activities, refreshments and entertainment.

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Every third Friday of the month, the Nashville Farmers Market holds the special Night Market event. The night market is open evenings from 5-8pm on the third Friday evenings of each month from June through October. The event includes lots of opportunities to experience many of the flavors of TN & great fun for the whole family.
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    Photo Credit: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

    Held at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds, the Nashville Flea Market is known as one of the best Flea Markets in Tennessee and offers a relaxing day of wandering and discovery for the entire family.Nashville Flea Market is open on the fourth weekend of every month except for December when it's usually held a week earlier.

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    Photo Credit: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

    The Nashville Predators Hockey Season usually kicks off its regular schedule in October and it normally runs into early April.

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    Photo Courtesy Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
    Nashville Tennessee Home Decorating & Remodeling Show is an annual event held normally the first week of October at the Nashville Convention Center and features displays of home related products and much more.
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    Photo Credit: Natchez Hills Vineyard
    Natchez Hills Vineyard and Nashville Unleashed pair their passions for wine, music, and cuisine in unprecedented fashion, offering music enthusiasts a truly unique and mesmerizing concert experience by centering it all around an up-close-and-personal weekly acoustical performance and dinner concert, known as Nashville Unleashed. It's the perfect date night!
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    Copyright Photography by Nora
    The Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) presents its annual Songwriter Achievement Awards every year in mid-October. A true honoring of the written word.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    This free annual event draws art lovers from all over for a self-guided drive through scenic countryside as fall colors peak on the hills and hollows of DeKalb County and the Center Hill Lake region in Middle Tennessee. Visit artist members as they work in clay, wood, glass, fibers and metals showing their latest work. Craft demonstrations are also usually planned for several stops too.
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    Photo Credit: Gaylord Entertainment
    Every Thursday night from March through October, Opry Country Classics highlights classic country music and memories through music, storytelling, and film clips of country’s all-time legends.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/John Knill
    Oyster Urban Adventure Race is usually held in the 3rd weekend of October and offers plenty of Family Fun and Team Adventure as you race around Downtown Nashville.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Chris Hondros
    Usually held late in the month of October, PhreakNIC is Nashville's annual hacker convention and it offers an entire weekend of hacking, panel discussions, and more. The convention is not only for hackers, it’s open to anyone with an interest, including the general public.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Poet’s Corner at Scarritt-Bennett Center offers a monthly poetry reading on the fourth Thursday of each month . The environment is informal, and conversation between the poet and audience is encouraged. Normally held at The Front Porch at Scarritt-Bennett from 7-8 p.m, the event is Free and open to the public. Reservations are requested but not required.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    The annual R.O.P.E Awards are normally held in early October and offer a great award show as well as a Reunion of Professional Entertainers that features some of Nashville's finest musicians.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Tim Boyle
    Rollercoaster Yard Sale is normally held the 1st weekend of October.This Four day grassroots extravaganza offers miles and miles of yard sales, crafts, antiques, handcrafted quilts, produce, southern foods, BBQ, entertainment, flea markets and more.It spans from Mammoth Cave, KY to Byrdstown TN.
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    Photo Credit: Nora Mayor
    Every Fall the Schermerhorn Symphony Center plays host to the annual Regions Free Day of Music The hugely popular event invites the entire community to Schermerhorn Symphony Center to enjoy free musical performances all day long and into the night. The free event is usually held in the first days of October and features a wide variety of local ensembles performing throughout the day.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Steve Mason
    The Second Saturday Book Sale is monthly book sale that offers plenty of great deals on books each month. This monthly event is held at the Donelson Public Library Branch, located at 2315 Lebanon Road, on the 2nd Saturday of each month - normally from 10:00am to 2:00pm.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    Join the park and the Sgt. York Patriotic Foundation for the annual commemoration of Alvin York’s battle in the Argonne Forest in France during World War 1. York’s life and times will be celebrated through presentations, music, local crafts, site tours and hikes, speeches, and children’s activities. Food and souvenirs will be available for purchase.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Phillip Dvorak

    Several times every month, Nashville Shakespeare Festival gathers to read one of the works of William Shakespeare. Normally, the readings are held at the Nashville Public Library on the first Saturday of the month (sometimes even the 2nd too) and readings at the Brentwood Library are generally held on the third Saturday.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Scott Barbour
    The Al Menah Temple Shrine Circus has been held at the Municipal Auditorium for years and normally this 4-day run is held in the first days of October.
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    Copyright Rick Moore
    Join in on the free fun at Fort Negley on the last Saturday of each month at 2 pm for feature presentations on the big screen. It’s free and open to the public!
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    Songs for the Cure

    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Songs for the Cure hosts several benefits throughout the year and offers folks not only a way to help others but also a chance to listen to some amazing music by some of Nashville’s best songwriters and musicians.
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    Photo Credit Getty Images/Matthew Simmons

    The Southern Festival of Books is held the second full weekend of October in downtown Nashville. This is a three-day celebration of books. The Festival is free with no tickets or reservations required and plenty of Authors on hand to sign their books.

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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke
    Sumner Crest Winery Summer Festival is held on the third Saturday of the month from May to November, and is a great way to spend a relaxing evening. Pack a picnic and your favorite blanket or lawn chair, buy a bottle of Sumner Crest wine for the evening and a couple to take home for the upcoming week, sit back and enjoy the music.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Jonnie Miles
    The Tennessee Beer Festival held their first ever event in mid-October of 2010, at Two Rivers Mansion. The festival brought together an array of breweries from different parts of the country and featured over 25 breweries in attendance with nearly 100 different beer offerings.
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    Photo Credit: Getty Images/Cate Gillon
    Tennessee Highland Games is held at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, usually the first weekend of October. This event is Middle Tennessee's annual celebration of Scottish ancestry and culture features performances by Scottish pipe bands, a Highland Dance competition, whiskey tasting, a variety of seminars and children's activities.
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    Copyright Jan Duke
    ••• © Jan Duke

    Expect 2 days of living history at the annual Tennessee History Festival at Bicentennial Mall. Costumed interpreters from every era in Tennessee’s history will be on hand demonstrating techniques, military tactics, cooking demonstrations and other period trades.

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    Photo credit: Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
    Celebrate Tennessee's State Parks! Discover miles of scenic waterways and acres of pristine land. Activities range from hikes, outdoor events, and family-friendly fun to weekend getaways and more.
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    Photo Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Titans Season usually kicks off its pre-season games in August with its regular schedule running from September into January.

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    Photo Credit: Scarritt-Bennett Center

    Vespers & All that Jazz offers community worship services for all ages every Sunday evening in Scarritt-Bennett Center’s Wightman Chapel. Inspired by jazz as a process of making music and using the music as a way to experience the interruptive spirit of God, Vespers & All That Jazz encourages compassion, peace, justice and wonder. The services are informal and last approximately 45 minutes.

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    Photo Credit: Tennessee Department of Tourism

    Walk Nashville Week celebrates and promotes walking in your daily life and walking throughout Nashville. This annual event is normally held the first week of October every year and includes a walk event each day of the week.

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    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    More than 15,000 people attend this annual event, held the 2nd weekend of October in Watertown. It showcases hundreds of exhibitors that display items ranging from antiques, clothes, arts & crafts, and much more.

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    Photo Courtesy Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
    The Watkins Visiting Artists Series is an annual year-long program which welcomes nationally and internationally recognized fine artists, designers, filmmakers, educators and critics to the campus and the community. The series explores the artisits and their work through by hosting lectures and art exhibits.

If I've overlooked your favorite Annual October Event in Nashville or if you need me to update, add to, or change one of our current listings, please contact me anytime - Thanks Jan