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Omaha Magazine

October 2019 Explore! Calendar

Sep 25, 2019 09:02AM ● By Tara Spencer
Event times and details may change. Check with venue or event organizer to confirm.


44th National Old Time Music Festival Oct. 3-6 at Christiansen Field House, Fremont. Three stages, four days, and endless entertainers. Goers can expect to see over 250 country performers from around the world. There is plenty of classic festival food to choose from while enjoying various genres of country music from bluegrass to mountain. 712-762-4363. —

Great Pumpkin Festival Oct. 4-6 along Main Street, Crete. There is fun for the entire family at this event. A zip-line down Main Street, Pumpkin Pie Eating Contest, and the Great Pumpkin Competition are a few of this year’s listed activities. 402.826.2136. —

Harvest Fair and Market Oct. 5 at The Pumpkin Patch at BE Farm, Bayard. Featuring the “Paint and Cider” event with artist Kelly Bhenke, this event also offers pumpkin picking, arts and crafts vendors, and food trucks. 308.641.5336. —

Elyria Pumpkin Festival Oct. 6, Elyria. Enjoy a free slice of pumpkin pie at the 27th annual event, and be sure to check out the pumpkins for sale. There are many activities for children, as well as vendors and a tractor display. 308.728.7875. —

Prairie Lights Film Festival Oct. 11-13 at Grand Theatre in Grand Island. Held at the historic Grand Theatre, films made by Nebraskans are promoted and showcased during this weekend in an attempt to encourage growth and support for local films and filmmakers. 308.381.2667. —

Old Time Autumn Oct. 13-14 in Brownville. This weekend celebration, taking place where it all began for Nebraska, focuses on historic sights and sounds, with activities such as carriage rides and a river cruise. 402.825.6001. —

Harvest Moon Fall Festival Oct. 12 in Hemingford. Featuring a goat roping contest, lip sync battle, haunted maze, home-brewed beer contest. and a 5K run/walk, this festival offers something for everyone. 308.487.3562. —

Guns 'N' Roses Oct. 15 at Pinnacle Bank Arena, Lincoln. The American hard rock band will be stopping in Lincoln during their “Not In This Lifetime” tour. 402.904.4444. —

Nebraska Country Music Festival Oct. 18-19 at Lincoln County Fairgrounds, North Platte. Music, dancing, and entertainment will be plentiful, and this year’s theme is “Nebraska Country Stars.” 308.390.1804. —

Bertrand Fall Craft Show Oct. 19 at Bertrand Community Building, Bertrand. Arts, crafts, beverages, and pastries are offered at this event featuring crafters and vendors from across Nebraska. 308.472.5029. —

Citizens’ Climate Lobby Environmental Film Party Oct. 22 at Bean Broker Coffeehouse and Pub, Chadron. This climate-solution centered group invites other concerned citizens to watch an environmental film and discuss afterwards. 308.432.4401. —

Boo at the Zoo Oct. 26-30 at Lincoln Children’s Zoo. Nearly 40 trick-or-treat booths giving out candy, coupons, and more can be found at Lincoln’s largest trick-or-treat event. All proceeds directly support the zoo and care for animals. 402.475.6741. —

Superhero Spooktacular Oct. 26 at Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum, Ashland. Arrive in costume and trick or treat around various stations, take photos with superheroes, and expect to see games and prizes throughout the event. New in 2019 is four superhero-themed escape rooms. 402.944.3100. —


Oktoberfest Oct. 4-6 at Amana Festhalle Barn, Amana. Beginning with the official keg-tapping ceremony, this festival featuring special food, events, and music—all with a German flare—has been celebrated in the Amana Colonies since 1965. 319.622.7622. —

Pumpkinfest Oct. 5-6 on Main Street, Anamosa. Titled the “Pumpkin Capital of Iowa,” thousands will come to Anamosa for this festival that features giant pumpkins, dozens of food and craft vendors, games for kids, and one of the largest parades in Iowa. 319.462.4879. —

Spooky Stories and S’Mores Oct. 9 at Bloomsbury Farm, Atkins. After the sun goes down, Wheezy the Friendly Witch will tell spooky stories while guests enjoy a s’more and a cup of hot chocolate. Until then, attendees can enjoy a hayrack ride, corn palace, fairy tale trail, and other activities. 319.446.7667. —

Scenic Drive Festival Oct. 11-13 in towns in Van Buren County. Thousands will travel to Southeastern Iowa for this three-day event. This festival is home to one of Iowa’s largest flea markets, and has many different opportunities for food and activities. 319.293.7111. —

Halloweenapalooza Oct. 11-12 in Ottumwa. With special guests Alex Vincent and Chucky, this festival held at the historic and haunted Hotel Ottumwa was created by horror filmmakers for horror fans. The weekend will consist of independent horror films, costume contests, and a zombie walk. 641.799.9770. —

Madison County Covered Bridge Festival Oct. 12-13, Winterset. Priding itself on its uniqueness, this festival encourages visitors to participate in old-time entertainments such as square dancing and marble shooting. The festival also has other activities, including a farmers market, parade, hot air balloon rides, and the annual horseshoe tournament. 515.462.1185. —

Osborne Heritage Days Oct. 12-13 in Osborne. Heritage Days began in 1975 and has become one of Northeast Iowa’s most popular fall festivals. Thousands of visitors can expect to see demonstrations such as basketry, candle making, and quilting; contests including chili cooking and pumpkin decorating; and foods like caramel apples, pie, and buffalo stew. 563.245.1516. —

Ames Artists’ Studio Tour Oct. 12-13 at various art studios, Ames. Children and adults are invited to a “behind the scenes” look at the life of an artist. These self-guided tours through participating studios in the area will allow viewers to learn more about artistry. 515.259.0494. —

Arb'boo'ween Oct. 19 at Iowa Arboretum, Ames. Decorated pumpkins, hayrides, and a hay maze are some of the activities families can expect to see at this costume-friendly event. 515.795.3216. — 

Spirit in the Gardens Oct. 19-20 at Reiman Gardens, Ames. Dressing in costume will allow kids and families to participate in trick-or-treating, storytelling, and a Jack-O-Lantern Walk, with view 650 lit Jack-O-Lanterns. 515.294.2710. —

Spirit in the Gardens


ICT Bloktoberfest Oct. 4-5 at WaterWalk, Wichita. Combining Oktoberfest with a Wichita Block Party, plenty of food and brews will be available at this local, kid-and-dog-friendly event. 316.285.9227. —

Woofstock 2019 Oct. 5 at Sedgwick County Park, Wichita. “Falls Fluffiest Festival” has become one of the largest events of its kind in the midwest. This community-building event gives attendees the chance to create a difference for homeless pets while including fun activities such as doggy musical chairs. 316.524.9196. —

Greater Kansas City Japan Festival Oct. 5 at Johnson County Community College, Overland Park. With music, remarks by distinguished guests, the ritual of Kagamiwari, and a toast to open the 2019 Festival, this day brings multiple ethnic groups together to learn about Japanese culture. —

Greater Kansas City Japan Festival

Mid America Flea Market Oct. 6 at Kansas State Fairgrounds, Hutchinson. A $1 admission fee will allow shoppers to view and purchase a wide variety of merchandise, including antiques and primitives. 620.663.5626. —

Columbus Day Festival and Hot Air Balloon Regatta Oct. 11-13 at various locations in Columbus. One of the fastest-growing festivals in southeast Kansas, the main attraction is hot air balloons, but the event also includes art exhibits, a car show, and more. 620.429.1492. —

Botanical Brewfest Oct. 12 at Botanical Brewfest Overland Park Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, Overland Park. Adults can taste over 90 craft beers from around 40 breweries, enjoy food, music, dancing, and more. All funds raised benefit the Arboretum. 913.322.6467. —

Pioneer Harvest Festival Oct. 18-20 at Bourbon County Fairgrounds, Fort Scott. This weekend features one of the largest flea markets in the region and has educational and historic activities for all ages. Rock crushing and corn shucking demonstrations are two of many events happening at the festival. 620.670.2750. —

Nascar Playoff Races Oct. 19-20 at Kansas Speedway, Kansas City. The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoff Elimination race is an action-packed weekend with excitement for everyone. 866.460.7223. —

Maple Leaf Festival Oct. 19-20 at Lumberyard Arts Center, Baldwin. This traditional weekend has over 300 craft exhibits, quilt shows and displays, performing arts, music, food, and more. The festival is the biggest fall family event in the area, and provides the opportunity for local nonprofit organizations to raise money. 785.594.7564.


Great North American Oktoberfest Oct. 4-6 at location TBA, St. Louis. Featuring award-winning brewers of German-style beer, friends and family come together to celebrate German food and culture. The festival also includes games and rides for all ages. 314.622.4550. —

Republic Pumpkin Daze Oct. 6 in Republic. Since 1992, many gather to celebrate pumpkin season with activities and vendors selling arts and crafts. 417.732.6210. —

Kansas City Grilled Cheese Festival Oct. 5 at Ilus W. Davis Park, Kansas City. The second annual festival shows off grilled cheese from local Kansas City restaurants and food trucks. The day will also include live music, games, bounce houses, and face painting. 816.812.1829. —

Weston Applefest Oct. 5-6 at downtown Weston. Come to Missouri’s “Best Small Town” for one of Missouri’s best fall festivals. This weekend offers a downtown parade, apple dumplings and apple pie, arts and crafts booths, and much more. 816.640.2909. —


Summit Art Festival Oct. 11-13 at Downtown Lee’s Summit, Missouri. With over 100 artists from around the country, art, music, and food is plentiful at this 12th annual festival. 800.600.5932. —

Gaming Arts Media Expo Oct. 11-13 at Springfield Expo, Springfield. Featuring artists, game masters, and a costume contest, this three-day event includes many activities for gamers. 417.616.3101. —

Apple Butter Makin’ Days Oct. 11-13 on the courthouse square, Mount Vernon. Apple butter is cooked using century-old methods, and games and entertainment are available for all ages. This festival is one of Missouri’s most popular. 417.466.7654. —

Missouri Day Festival Oct. 18-21 at Trenton High School, Trenton. The largest festival of the year in Trenton, around 10,000 people are drawn to the area for this family-friendly event. Vendors and many events, such as a marching band competition, make for an exciting weekend. 600.359.4606. —

Spooky Saturday Oct. 26 at St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis. Parents and kids are invited for a day of educational activities throughout the zoo, with Halloween themes and surprises along the way. Costumed characters hope to see attendees in their costumes. 314.781.0900. —

This calendar was printed in the October 2019 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

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