By August 31, 2013 Read More →

Around the South: September 2013

Southern Guide to Life ~ Around the South ~ September

Find out what’s going on around the South this September.

Photograph by: Tibor Fazakas

Alabama

Decatur Riverfest (Decatur – Sept 13-14) The Riverfest features more than 70 professional and amateur BBQ cooking teams from across the United States, competing for prize money and trophies, totaling $20,000. It is the only barbecue cook off in Alabama sanctioned by The Kansas City Barbeque Society. The two-day event includes food vendors, children’s activities and live Motown, jazz, classic rock ‘n roll and blues entertainment from well-known regional performers. www.decaturjaycees.com

NEACA Fall Craft Show (Huntsville – Sept 20-22) Since 1873, the North East Alabama Craftsmen Association has promoted the study, appreciation, enjoyment and preservation of original handicrafts. Their annual craft festivals showcase these one-of-kinds art pieces.  All proceeds from the shows go to support a variety of local charities. To date, the NEACA has raised over $850,000 for charities in additional to their scholarship programs. www.neaca.org

Taste of the Bayou (Bayou La Batre – Sept 28) This seafood tasting event features 30+ booths with succulent dishes prepared by local and professional chefs. The event spotlights seafood caught and prepared by those who make a living from the area’s waters.  www.alabama.travel

Arkansas

Arkansas Hot Air Balloon Festival and Championship (Harrison – Sept 6-8) Begun in 1995, this unique outdoor event is held in beautiful downtown Harrison, Arkansas. The festival will kick off on Friday evening with The Hare and the Hound Balloon Race. The event will continue on Saturday morning with more Balloon Race Competitions. The 2nd Annual Blue Sky Art Festival presented by The Harrison Art League will be ongoing from 8:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. on the Court House Square with over 30 artist booths, food vendors and live entertainment. www.arkansasballoonfest.com

12th annual Smoke on the Water Ribba-Ramma (Pine Bluff – Sept 13-14) An amateur competition created especially for the weekend warrior and backyard griller with a $5,000 purse and both professional judging and a people’s choice award. www.smokeonthewaterbbq.com

Georgia

The Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival at Callaway Gardens (Pine Mountain – Aug 30-Sept 1) The event, highlighted by the extraordinary site of hot air balloons that glow in the night sky. Between balloon launches, the days are filled with entertainment, family activities, exhibits, demonstrations, music and more. As part of the Callaway Gardens Digital SLR Photography Workshop Series, there will be Mastering Night Photography workshops during the Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival which offer abundant photo opportunities. The event starts Friday night when the balloons are set up along the bank of Robin Lake for a coordinated “balloon glow” and continues on through the festival. Participants will receive both classroom instruction and hands on experience. www.callawaygardens.com

Dragon Con Independent Film Festival (Aug 30-Sept 2) The Dragon Con Independent Film Festival is a combination of short and feature-length independent film screenings, panels, celebrity guests, discussions, concerts, contests and seminars. Combined with the 35,000-plus Dragon Con attendees, the festival creates an extraordinary film event. www.filmfest.dragoncon.org

7th Annual Atlanta Arts Festival (Atlanta – Sept 14-15) This festival features a professionally juried fine arts event that will fill Piedmont Park in Atlanta with color and life. Ranked among the Top 100 Fine Art & Design Shows in the country by Sunshine Artist Magazine in 2012, Atlanta Arts Festival brings to the drawing board 200 local and nationally recognized artists from an eclectic mix of 12 mediums. Festival-goers will enjoy artist demonstrations and classes, live music, crafts for the kids and festival cuisine. www.AtlantaArtsFestival.com

8th annual Shrimp & Grits: The Wild Georgia Shrimp Festival (Jekyll Island – Sept 20-22) Located directly on the Georgia coast, Jekyll Island is a shrimper’s haven. This spirited three-day event is the only festival dedicated to the prime local product, Wild Georgia Shrimp, and its Southern cuisine counterpart: grits. Chefs and foodies from across the Southeast flock to the food-centric festival, either to try their hand at creating the event’s best shrimp and grits recipe, or to eat their way through the plethora of dishes available. Set under the cover of live oaks in the Jekyll Island Historic Landmark District, Shrimp & Grits: The Wild Georgia Shrimp Festival provides a laid-back, relaxed Southern atmosphere for savoring delicious coastal cuisine and great entertainment. Throughout the weekend festival, the theme is simple: taste, sip, enjoy, repeat! www.shrimpandgritsfestival.com

Kentucky

Gala in the Garden (Lexington – Sept 15) The Friends of The Arboretum will host the 9th annual Gala in the Garden. Gala attendees can look forward to delicious food and drink, lively music, and great company! The Silent Auction offers opportunities to bid on amazing items including trips to exciting destinations such as South Africa and London, England. You can even win a Fighter Pilot Experience. www2.ca.uky.edu/arboretum/calendar_events.php

5th Annual Squash & Gobble Arts Bazaar & Fall Festival (Greenville – Sept 21) (FREE) An outdoor art fair held around the historic downtown square. “Squash & Gobble” features various artisans from all across Western Kentucky. In 2012, over 70 artisan booths were present. These booths featured painting, drawing, jewelry making, stained glass creations, homemade candles & soaps, photography, pottery, woodworking, furniture and many others. In addition, there will be live musical performances throughout the day on the Veterans Plaza Stage. There will also be multiple activities offered for all the kids. Every activity is FREE and will include pumpkin painting, hayrides, straw bale maze, pony rides, and balloon twisting! A youth art competition is featured in “Imagination Alley,” a recently renovated alley in the heart of downtown, where Muhlenberg County students get a chance to compete for cash prizes and local recognition. You will also find a full food court area offering all your seasonal favorites like kettle corn and fried apple pies! www.tourgreenville.com

51st Annual Franklin Car Show (Franklin – Sept 21) “A Celebration of Cars, Crafts, and Hospitality”.  The 51st Annual Antique Auto Show in Franklin is in conjunction with the Festival on the Square featuring handmade arts and crafts. Cars will line the streets and booths will be around the sidewalks of the historic courthouse square. Over 50 trophies will be awarded and there will be dash plaques for the first 200 entries. www.kentuckytourism.com

Kentucky Bourbon Festival (Bardstown – Sept 17-22) Since 1776, the people of Bardstown, Kentucky have been making Bourbon.  Their dedication to the fine art of distilling eventually gave Bardstown the title of Bourbon Capital of the World. The Kentucky Bourbon Festival gives you six 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.  www.kybourbonfestival.com

BBQ on the River (Paducah – Sept 26-28) BBQ on the River is a Community Charitable Event! Can you think of a better way to spend an early fall weekend than enjoying great BBQ, lively entertainment, exquisite crafts, a charming downtown and a great time with 40,000 of your closest friends? Join the fun in Paducah, KY for three great days of BBQ Bliss as 40 plus BBQ teams from Western Kentucky, and beyond cook up over 80 tons of pork and chicken in hopes of taking home the coveted Grand Champions trophy. www.bbqontheriver.org

 

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