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Fall Festivals in Kentucky



One of the most wonderful things about visiting Kentucky in the fall is the number of opportunities for enjoying authentic Kentucky experiences through fall festivals. Most every community, large or small, hosts a festival complete with local traditions, food, music and family-friendly fun. Here is just a small sampling of the many possibilities that Kentucky fall festivals represent.

Poppy Mountain Bluegrass Festival

Touted as “one of the largest bluegrass festivals in the country,” this 20+ year-old music fest takes place in Morehead. Offering over 1000 acres of camping area and featuring 100 bands performing on dual stages, this event attracts over 20,000 visitors and is a must-see for lovers of bluegrass music. Past performers have included the likes of Lonesome River Band and Dr. Ralph Stanley. For more information call 606-784-2277.

Trail of Tears Intertribal PowWow   

This is a gathering of Native American people to celebrate their rich heritage; to socialize with old friends and make new ones and an opportunity to expose the centuries old traditions of the various dances and Native American crafts; and to educate the PowWow visitors with story telling and Indian lore demonstrations.   

Horse Cave Heritage Festival

Celebrating the heritage of the community, this fall festival event features a downtown street festival including arts & crafts, folklife program interviews, a quilt show, antique cars and tractors, live music and a 3K walk/run. For more information call 270-537-4967.

Barbeque on the River Tournament and Pig Out & Market Days

This family-friendly event in Paducah features plenty of food and fun. Over 50 teams compete for the Grand Champions trophy for the best in cooking Western Kentucky BBQ. The festival includes live music and entertainment, a charitable 5K run and riverboat tours.

St. James Court Art Show

In a tradition spanning many decades, one of the premier fall events in Louisville is the St. James Court Art Show held in the Old Louisville district of downtown. Featuring 750 juried artists from around the country, the event is attended by lovers of arts and fine crafts from across the region.

Kentucky Bourbon Festival 

The  Kentucky Bourbon Festival is 6 full days of smooth Bourbon, delicious food, and great entertainment, with a healthy dose of Kentucky hospitality thrown in for good measure. From black tie galas to historical tours, there is something for all ages and interests. It's a wonderful six-day event full of activities for the whole family.    

Forkland Heritage Festival

This festival hosted by Gravel Switch in Boyle County features a variety of historical exhibits including Native American artifacts and vintage farm machinery, a wildlife exhibit, living history skits, live music and entertainment, wagon rides, sorghum making, and a silent auction. For more information call 800-755-0076

Jack 0’Lantern Spectacular

5,000 carved and illuminated pumpkins line a ¼-mile walking trail in Louisville’s Iroquois Park  crating an unique  “art show” daily from dusk to 11 p.m. during the week (Sunday-Thursday) and midnight on Friday & Saturday.

So get out and enjoy Kentucky’s beautiful autumn weather and experience the Bluegrass State’s rich cultural traditions by taking part in a fall festival.  For a more complete list visit