2022 St. Louis Fall Festivals & Events Guide
By Rachel Huffman
In St. Louis, fall means mild weather, gorgeous foliage and a slew of things to do. From art to apples and beer to music, our area’s fall festivals and events have it all. So whether you live here or you’re planning to visit, make sure you add these to your calendar.
Saturdays and Sundays in September
Eckert’s annual AppleFest features fun, family-friendly events on its farms in the greater St. Louis area. While the apples are certainly the stars of the show – and ripe for the picking during AppleFest – you can also take a scenic wagon ride through the orchards, enjoy live entertainment and treat your taste buds to caramel apples and cider donuts. At the children’s carnival, your little ones can also ride a pony, feed a goat and get a thrill from the rides. In October, the Pumpkin Jamboree takes the place of AppleFest at Eckert’s.
September 3 to 5
Spotlighting and celebrating the history, culture and people of Japan, the Japanese Festival at the Missouri Botanical Garden is one of the oldest and largest of its kind in the U.S. Every year, thousands of visitors flock to the Garden to absorb the traditional Japanese art, food and entertainment on display. If you have time, consider taking one of the special tours offered in conjunction with the event. Explore the private Teahouse Island on a guided public tour, or marvel at the Japanese Garden, splendidly illuminated by shoji lamps, on a self-guided, evening-hours stroll.
September 9 to 11
Love is in the art. This year’s theme for the Saint Louis Art Fair exemplifies the feelings of joy and expressiveness that art provides to our community. In its 29th year, the fair attracts a variety of high-quality artists and enthusiastic art-lovers, plus some of St. Louis’ best restaurants, including Clementine’s Naughty and Nice Creamery, Juniper, Kimchi Guys and Steve’s Hot Dogs. Whether you’re looking for a piece of fine art to fill your home or a fun-filled day in downtown Clayton, you should stop by this three-day event.
Let’s get back to the land. The Fall Farm Festival at The Magic House gives kids – and adults – a chance to meet local farmers and learn about where and how their food is grown. The whole family can also sit in a real tractor, participate in agricultural activities and meet real farm animals in the museum’s Play Garden.
September 10 and 11
Music and heritage meet at this festival in the Grand Center Arts District. The second rendition of Music at the Intersection, a civic-led effort presented by Kranzberg Arts Foundation, will encompass four stages set up in streets and green spaces throughout the neighborhood. St. Louis-based musicians as well as national acts, spanning musical genres such as blues, jazz, soul, R&B and rock ‘n’ roll, will come together in this celebration of St. Louis’ musical, cultural and artistic legacy. Don’t miss headliner Erykah Badu on Saturday night!
This annual concert is a musical treat, capped off with a spectacular fireworks display. Pack a picnic, grab a blanket and nestle in the grass of Art Hill for an evening of orchestral favorites, film scores and more, led by SLSO music director Stéphane Denève.
September 16 and 17
One of St. Louis’ most idyllic events, The Great Forest Park Balloon Glow and Race is not to be missed. Event organizers say that it’s the oldest and best-attended hot air balloon race in the world – you might want to scope out the perfect viewing area for you and your family ahead of time.
September 16 to 18
Located in Kirkwood Park, the Greentree Festival is a time-honored tradition. The first festival was held in 1961 to replace drought-stricken trees in Kirkwood, Missouri, and today, the family-friendly event features a parade, food, entertainment, arts and crafts, contests and more. While you’re here, check out the folklife festival, where more than 40 artisans – from blacksmiths to frontierspeople and rope-makers to weavers – demonstrate their crafts and display their wares.
September 16 to 18
Running along historic North Main Street in St. Charles, Missouri, the Mosaics Fine Arts Festival features diverse artwork from artists across the country, alongside a pet pavilion and a children’s village with a creation station. The festival aims to stimulate the community and educate children and adults in art and its ability to enhance their lives.
Head to Ritz Park for this annual event, now in its seventh year. More than 70 retail vendors and community organizations will be in attendance; plus, businesses along South Grand Boulevard will offer varying specials, discounts and entertainment on the same day. Dispersed throughout the street, there will also be hands-on activities, face painters, balloon artists and games.
Held at the Community Music School on Webster University’s campus, this festival centers on traditional Korean performing arts, with performances by the Korean Performing Arts Institute of Chicago and other local groups. Highlights of the program include a bamboo flute solo, a taekwondo demonstration and, of course, the K-pop station. Attendees can also participate in visual art demonstrations focused on the Korean alphabet, calligraphy, crafts, traditional games and traditional clothing.
September 23 to 25
St. Louis residents and visitors look forward to Taste of St. Louis every year. With double the restaurants and vendors, this year’s event will be bigger than ever! Ozomatli and Eli Young Band will perform, and there will be two DJ stages, as well. Entry is free and open to the public.
September 23 to October 30
With thrills both on and off the rides, Fright Fest at Six Flags St. Louis is one of the spookiest events of the season. During the day, family-friendly attractions abound, but at night, all the creatures that go bump in the night haunt the park.
Visit the National Museum of Transportation for an afternoon of acoustic music and classic cars.
September 30 to October 2
Round up your family and friends and head to Eureka, Missouri, for its annual, shall we say, party. Eureka Days features carnival rides, a parade, a beer garden and more. Think you’ve got skills? Sign up for the cornhole tournament, enter the chicken wing eating contest or climb the U.S. Army rock wall.
This annual street festival promotes The Grove neighborhood of St. Louis with everything from African dancers to fire performers and a bubble bus to a fashion show. This year’s program also includes local talent, including Dylan Triplett, Mvstermind and Divas of the Grove, on the main stage. While you’re in the area, fuel up at the Food Village – or test your luck in the hot dog eating contest.
October 1 to 31
During the month of October, you’ll see some new faces around Eureka, Missouri. As part of the Scarecrow Festival, artfully designed scarecrows will strike regal poses in front of local businesses, schools, churches and homes. While you’re in town, embark on The Great Scarecrow Hunt for a chance to win cash prizes.
October 7 to 9
This fall, the Best of Missouri Market returns to the Missouri Botanical Garden with almost 100 vendors, offering unique handicrafts, locally produced foodstuffs, bespoke jewelry, native plants and more.
Local, regional and national craft breweries, distilleries and wineries will come together for the 10th annual Brew in the Lou. Hosted by Lutheran Elementary School Association (LESA), the festival in Francis Park also boasts food tastings, live music and local vendors. Admission includes unlimited beer, wine, spirits and food (while supplies last), along with a commemorative tasting glass, and proceeds benefit LESA’s 35 member schools, which serve approximately 9,000 students.
October 8 and 9
A stone’s throw from the Missouri Botanical Garden, the Historic Shaw Art Fair takes place at the intersection of Flora Place and Tower Grove Avenue. The fine art fair features 130 artists showcasing their ceramics, paintings, pastels, photography, sculptures, woodwork and more. Food and music will supplement the art.
The community will come together for this one-day festival, celebrating the changing of the seasons. Local vendors include 4 Hands Brewing Co., Bogart’s Smokehouse, ClayByTay, Noboleis Vineyards, Papillon Press, Riley Construction Toys and Sedara Sweets. The on-site farmer’s market will also feature artisan foodstuffs, such as chocolate, salsa and tea. Snack and shop to your heart’s content while listening to an assortment of live music.
More than 40 local and national breweries will come together for the St. Louis Beer Fest. There will be 120 beers available, and admission includes unlimited samplings as well as access to all the exhibits at the Saint Louis Science Center.
October 29 and 30
Attracting more than 100,000 visitors each year, the Apple Butter Festival is the largest event in Kimmswick, Missouri. While participants can enjoy the small-town ambiance, live entertainment and between 500 and 600 food, drink and craft vendors, there’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes, too. On Friday, the Kimmswick Historical Society gathers to peel and prepare the apples. Then, before dawn on Saturday and Sunday, the apples are cooked in a kettle over a wood-burning fire until the fragrant spread is thick enough to seal in jars. After one taste of the apple butter, you’ll want to stock your pantry with the indulgence.
In St. Louis, Oktoberfest is in a category of its own, with beer and funfair for all. This year’s event calendar includes Oktoberfest at Grant’s Farm, Saint Charles Oktoberfest, Urban Chestnut Brewing Co.’s Oktoberfest and Oktoberfest in Soulard, among others.
November 3 to 13
This year marks the 31st Annual Whitaker St. Louis International Film Festival. The festival showcases cutting-edge features and shorts from around the world, many of which will receive their only exposure in St. Louis.