Looking to Fall

Fall in Pennsylvania is all about foliage, food, and of course, festivals! Wind down your summer and get a jump start on planning your next trip to one of these top events.

Focus on Foliage:

The 63rd Annual Autumn Leaf Festival in downtown Clarion is from September 24 – October 2. This nine-day, award-winning festival is loaded with fun events and activities, including carnival rides, games, Farmers & Crafters Day, Tournament of Leaves Parade – the longest daytime parade in PA!.

Every weekend in October, board the New Hope and Ivyland Railroad for the annual Fall Foliage Excursion Train. All aboard a 1920s vintage passenger coach for a 2.5-hour journey through the picturesque countryside.

Food & Fun:

A summer-long tournament amongst area restaurants comes down to the finals for best wings in Happy Valley at the Tussey Mountain Wingfest Finals on September 1. Two-time champion Duffy’s Tavern in Boalsburg will be defending its title this summer.

The Taste of Hamburg-er Festival is a family fun day celebrating America’s favorite food – the hamburger. More than 30 burger stands compete for the best burger award and attendees can watch amateur and professional burger eating competitions. Bring your buns to Hamburg September 3 – you will relish the experience!

At the 21st Annual Chile Pepper Food Festival September 9, you will witness a jalapeno pepper eating contest, salsa contest, pepper field excursion, and a variety of food, such as Crabby Pepper Poppers, pulled pork nachos, and jambalaya. More than 100 Chile pepper and arts & crafts vendors will be onsite.

Go to the sprawling and beautiful grounds of the Hershey Farm Restaurant & Inn in Strasburg on September 10 to join the yearly fun at the Whoopie Pie Festival, which celebrates one of Lancaster County’s delicious and world-famous Pennsylvania Dutch confectionary icons.

Raise your glass to fine wine and fresh flavors at the seventh annual Wine & Food Festival, presented by The Hotel Hershey September 16–18. Enjoy a weekend of spirited events including a comedy show, local winery tour, Pinot Noir blending class, the Grand Tasting, and more!

Don’t miss the Apple Butter Festival in Elderton, October 7–9, which will include homemade goods, a barbeque, 5K race, live entertainment, Big Rig Truck Show, and a parade!

Classic Fairs:

Feast on traditional fair food as you explore livestock exhibits, live entertainment, harness racing, and amusements at the 251st York Fair, America’s First Fair™ September 9–18. Take in big-name acts such as Alabama, Chase Rice, Comedian Jeff Dunham and the I Love the 90’s Tour.

The 31st Annual Saxonburg Festival of the Arts, held at Roebling Park in Saxonburg September 10–11, promises a fun-filled weekend of arts, crafts, live music, art demonstrations, and more in historic Saxonburg.

Soak up some small-town charm during the 12th Annual New Freedom Fest September 17, featuring musicians, artists, businesses, and community groups. New Freedom is also home to Steam Into History, where history and train buffs can step on board a Civil War-era replica steam engine.

The 41st Annual Hartslog Day in Alexandria on October 8 will be a fun-filled event featuring food, music, and games throughout the day. More than 200 craftspeople, special events, museum exhibits, and children’s activities are planned.

One-of-a-kind Opportunities:

The Annual Autumn Hawk Watch at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary begins August 15 at the Sanctuary’s famed North Lookout and is conducted daily, weather permitting, through December 15.An average of 18,000 birds of prey will soar over the Sanctuary’s rocky North Lookout, a 1,500-foot outcropping on the Kittatinny Ridge or “Blue Mountain”, which doubles as an excellent location to view the changing colors of the season.

The Fourth Annual Go Green Festival is September 10 at the Kohl's parking lot in Cranberry Township, Butler County. Peruse a variety of vendors who supply renewable energy for both your home and your business and listen to educational talks on the viability of using wind, solar, and geothermal energy sources. This year the Go Green Festival will feature an Electric Car Show & Cruise.

Farmers and Threshermans Jubilee is a country festival where antique machinery takes center stage! For more than 60 years, this festival has showcased the early machines of agricultural life from ponderous steam engines and early gasoline tractors to horse- and dog-powered machines! This year, the festival will be held September 7–11.

The Ligonier Highlands Games on September 24 is an annual gathering featuring traditional bagpipe music, pipe and drum competitions, Scottish harp workshops, tossing the caber, the Scottish hammer throw, sheaf tossing, and more!

This year, the Leaves and Lights Festival will debut in Kittanning, Armstrong County. The event is being held to break the Guinness World Record of longest carved and lit pumpkins in a row, which is currently 2,015 pumpkins! The festival will be held October 28–30.

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