New England Fall Festivals 2019

New England celebrates fall foliage season like no other place in the world. Some of the best New England fall festivals feature Octoberfest beer, food from the harvest, arts and crafts, hayrides, and pumpkins. Check to see if you will be around for any of the festivals held in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. There is a whole slate of fall events planned.

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31st Annual Harpoon Octoberfest

harpoon brewery boston
 Henry Zbyszynski/Flickr

On the last weekend of September in 2019, kickoff Octoberfest at the Harpoon Brewery in Boston, Massachusetts. 

Boston's Harpoon Brewery hosts one of New England's largest Octoberfest celebrations of the year. Sample fresh Harpoon beer and German food while you enjoy live performances by German oompah bands and some playful events like the chicken dance contest.

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Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival

Annual Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival


The 31st annual Manchester Fall Art and Craft Festival span three days at the Riley Rink at Hunter Park on October 4 to 6, 2019, for a weekend of leaf peeping and shopping.

Each year, Manchester, Vermont, hosts this fall craft show featuring works by 200 artists plus live entertainment, local food, beer, and more. Stop by for musical performances, tasty treats, or to browse goods from dozens of expert artists and artisans. 

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Northeast Kingdom Fall Foliage Festival

Northeast Kingdom Fall Foliage Festival in Peacham VT

David P. McMasters/Vermont Dept. of Tourism and Marketing

This seven-day fall festival showcases a different town each day in Vermont's remote and incredibly scenic Northeast Kingdom. The event runs from September 30 to October 6, 2019.

The seven participating towns are Marshfield, Walden, Cabot, Plainfield, Peacham, Barnet, and Groton. Jump in your car and travel town-to-town meeting local folks as they open the doors of their homes, historic sites, and churches and host a variety of activities ranging from guided tours, cider pressing, giant pumpkin contests, and concerts to lumberjack or pancake breakfasts and chili cook-offs or barbecue suppers.

04 of 10

72nd Annual Warner Fall Foliage Festival

People walking in the Warner Fall Foliage Festival

Warner Fall Foliage Festival 

Each year since 1947, Warner, New Hampshire, has hosted a fall foliage festival. The town entices visitors with an arts and crafts fair, carnival rides, a farmer's market, food, and a full lineup of free entertainment.

Highlights of the weekend event will include two grand parades, a 5-mile road race, a children's run, and a lobster dinner and barbecue chicken. This year, the event takes place over the first weekend in October. 

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05 of 10

Sunday River Fall Festival Weekend


Sunday River 

October 12 and October 13, 2019, is Fall Festival Weekend at the Sunday River Ski Resort in Newry, Maine.

The main event is the 19th Annual North American Wife Carrying Championships on October 13. It is truly a unique sporting event in which the winning carrier earns his partner's weight in beer and five times his partner's weight in cash. It is free to spectate.

Other events throughout the weekend include scenic chairlift rides, horse-drawn wagon rides, kids' activities, free concerts, and more.

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Boothbay Harbor Fall Foliage Festival and Craft Fair

Annual Fall Foliage Festival

 Bob Crink/Boothbay Railway Village

This 52nd annual fall festival at Boothbay Railway Village features crafts, entertainment, food, activities for kids, a pumpkin carving contest, and steam train rides for a nostalgic look at the leaves on Columbus Day Weekend.

Dozens of vendors will be on site selling handmade goods and delicious food, and there will be plenty of opportunities to listen to some great local music and meet the residents of Boothbay Harbor, Maine.

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Mystic Seaport Chowder Days Festival

Tourists in the Museum of America and the Sea at Mystic Seaport, Connecticut, USA
Aimin Tang/Getty Images 

Another Columbus Day weekend tradition is the Mystic Seaport Chowder Days Festival in Mystic, Connecticut, at the Mystic Seaport Museum.

If you're hungry for chowder, do not hesitate to visit the annual festival featuring New England's signature soup. There are several varieties of chowder, apple fritters, mulled cider and other seasonal selections, all of which must be purchased separately from museum admission. While there, enjoy family activities, live music, and all of the sights and experiences of this sprawling maritime museum.

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29th Annual Pumpkin Festival

Pumpkin Festival New Hampshire

Kim Knox Beckius

Make plans to help New Hampshire hold onto its title of Pumpkin Capital of the World in 2019 when the Pumpkin Festival returns to Laconia, New Hampshire, on October 18 and 19 this year. Bring a carved pumpkin—or a few. There will be kiddie rides, a zip line, a 10K run, a 5K walk, and much more.

The people of New Hampshire recaptured their Guinness World Record for the most lit jack-o-lanterns in one place in 2013 by besting the 30,128 glowing gourds Boston assembled in 2006.

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09 of 10

Wellfleet OysterFest

Wellfleet OysterFest
Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism/Flickr 

The annual OysterFest in Wellfleet features opportunities to sample oysters and clams prepared every which way. You can also shop for crafts, cheer for competitors in the Oyster Shuck-Off, participate in family activities, listen to music, and even learn something about the marine environment. 

The fun takes place on October 19 and October 20, 2019, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., rain or shine, in Wellfleet, Massachusetts. Enjoy an uncrowded Cape Cod in the fall, the off-season rates, splashes of fall color, mild temperatures, and, of course, the oysters.

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International Oktoberfest

International Oktoberfest! in Rhode Island

RI Waterfront Events 

Savor a taste of Germany at the 27th annual Oktoberfest featuring authentic entertainment including Bavarian bands on the first Saturday in October this year at Bold Point Park, East Providence, Rhode Island. The waterfront event offers a Biergarten atmosphere and authentic German food as well as a number of local vendors on-site selling their artisan crafts.

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