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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 - September 8-16

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.

Horse Cave Heritage Festival - September 15-16

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.

The World Chicken Festival in London - Sept 21-24
The World Chicken Fesitval pays tribute to the legacy of the area where  Colonel Sander's established the first and original KFC in the 1940’s. The festival features live entertainment, games, kids activities and of course, lots of fried chicken - fried up in the world's largest skillet. 

Casey County Apple Festival - Sept 21-23
The  Casey County Apple Festival is held each year in beautiful, downtown Liberty and features vendors displaying Arts & Crafts, Food and Flea Market booths, plus various pageants. There's also free live musical entertainment, children's and youths, contest and foods, parade and a carnival. The show pieces of the festival are the 10 foot giants produced each year including a 10 foot giant chocolate chip cookie, followed by a 10 foot pizza and last but not least the 10 ft. Giant Apple Pie baked from scratch and served free to the public on Saturday.

Morgan County Sorghum Festival - Sept 22-24
This marks the 47th year that this  West Liberty festival has celebrated the rich tradition of sorghum making with great food, entertainment, and demonstrations! Learn not only about how sorghum is produced but also the many products it's used in as well as other farming traditions. 

Barbeque on the River Tournament and Pig Out & Market Days - Sept 28-30

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 - Oct 6-8

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  -Sept 11-17

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 - Oct 13-14

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 - Oct 12 - Nov 7

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