Home > Travelogue > Your 2019 Up North Fall Festival Guide

Your 2019 Up North Fall Festival Guide


The approach of the most colorful season of the year is the perfect reason to celebrate! Whether your Up North base camp is in Manitowish Waters or Madeline Island or anywhere in between, there’s likely to be a fall festival near you while you’re in the region. Here are some of the highly anticipated festivals happening Up North this autumn.

Classic Fall Festivals

Fall Festival – Amery – September 12–15

Celebrate early autumn in various locations throughout Amery. Festivities include the Grand Parade, the Queen Pageant, an arts & crafts fair, a tent dance, the high school football game, a quilt show, a demolition derby, and a car show.

Scarecrow Fest – Phelps – September 14

Visit this town tucked into the Nicolet National Forest to see some early autumn color, take part in the pumpkin-chucking contests, peruse the craft fair wares, browse the car show, go on a hayride, and indulge in free chili and deep-fried pickles.

Fall Harvest Fest – Lake Tomahawk – September 14

The Lake Tomahawk Lions Club presents this annual tradition, which includes a car show, crafts, children’s activities, food, and more!

Colorama – St. Germain – September 21

Celebrate the glorious fall colors with free horse-drawn wagon rides through woodland trails, pumpkin painting, the Mums the Word mum sale, live music, and concessions including Pints in the Park beer tasting from regional microbreweries. Also part of the festivities is the second annual Helo 5K Run, which benefits the Vilas County Sheriff’s K-9 Program.

Fall Festival – Hayward – September 21

Head to downtown Hayward to take part in contests and children’s games, browse the arts and crafts fair, and listen to live music.

41st Annual Pumpkin Festival – Bessemer – September 25–29

In addition to the crafts and food vendors, face painting, children’s activities, craft fair, and concession stands you would expect to find at a fall festival, this Upper Peninsula Michigan town’s take on the classic fall festival also includes unique events such as pumpkin geocaching, a zombie crawl, and a pumpkin pancake breakfast.

18th Annual Fall Fest – Cable Area – September 27–28

This picturesque northwestern Wisconsin town will transform to a dreamy autumn scene as its streets are lined with cornstalks, hay bales, and pumpkins to celebrate the Fall Fest. Enjoy live music; a car, motorcycle, and truck show; arts and crafts; enticing food; a wine and beer garden; and a bounce house and other kids’ activities. This festival’s food options will tantalize your taste buds—from the pumpkin pecan pancakes served with Wisconsin maple syrup to the farmer’s market to the food tent staffed by local chefs who will whip up some of their restaurants’ bestsellers.

Fall 4 and Fall Color Festival – Park Falls – September 28

This event kicks off with a 4-mile walk/run along the beautiful Flambeau River. En route, walkers and runners will judge the decorated homes to determine the winner of the Fall Colors Legacy Award. This event finishes at the Flambeau View Greenhouse, where there will be fun for the whole family: arts and crafts; pumpkins, scarecrows, and fall flowers; craft beers; a hayride; and other kids’ activities. Stick around Triangle Park after the festival—you won’t want to miss the 3rd Annual Chili Challenge!

24th Annual Harvest Fest – Boulder Junction – October 12

Play some kids’ games, shop the Haystack, indulge in fall treats, and go on a hayride! Kids are invited to dress in costumes and follow Granny Autumn to various events throughout Boulder Junction.

Jack-O’-Lantern Festival – Spooner – October 12

This festival has so many fun activities for the whole family—including kids’ inflatables, a pumpkin roll, and a pumpkin-carving contest during the day and a zombie run, bonfires, and live music in the evening.

Pumpkin Fest – Three Lakes – October 12

The Three Lakes Fire Department Auxiliary sponsors this quintessential Northwoods fall festival, featuring delicious soups and cinnamon rolls, a farmer’s market, and cranberry bog tours.

Hanson’s Garden Village Fall Fest – Rhinelander – October 19

Come to Hanson’s Garden Village to enjoy the petting zoo, corn maze, scavenger hunt, scarecrow contest, pumpkin bowling, apple slingshot, face painting, and other children’s activities. You can also meet the Hodag and some Disney princesses, join DJ Coco at a dance party, and hang out with local Girl Scouts to take part in fun activities and get information about their organization.

Madeline Island Family Fall Fest – La Pointe – October 19

Take a ferry to the largest of the Apostle Islands for a vintage car show, cider and soap making, a pie-eating contest, pumpkin decorating, quality street vendors, and a kids’ costume parade.

Special Celebrations of the Harvest

Wild Rice Festival – Lac du Flambeau – September 14

This event in downtown Lac du Flambeau features a 1-mile kids’ race and Circle of Life 5K, Native art and craft and food vendors, a wild rice and fry bread cooking contest, a pie-eating contest, and wild rice demonstrations.

Northwoods Rendezvous & Wild Rice Festival – Crandon – September 20–22

Don’t miss the debut of this unique and educational festival, featuring reenactments, demonstrations, and competitions associated with hunting, trapping, and harvesting during the 1790–1840 time period. The event will incorporate both European and Native American techniques and traditions.

Apple Festival – Bayfield – October 4–6

This popular festival on the shores of Lake Superior features orchard tours, history walks, live music, a grand parade, and even an apple-peeling contest.

Cran A Rama – Manitowish Waters – October 5

Celebrate cranberry harvest season with “Taste of Harvest” concessions offered by local restaurants and vendors, free cranberry marsh tours, free Fall Color Pontoon Rides, a cranberry cooking contest, self-guided fall color tours, fresh cranberry sales and samples, and even more.

Cranberry Fest – Eagle River – October 5–6

This festival, held in the Northwoods lake resort town Eagle River, will feature cranberry marsh tours, a cranberry beer and wine garden, live music, an antiques market, a fiber arts show, and a crafts fair.


Oktoberfest – Crivitz – September 14

This event features ceremonial keg tapping., followed by German food and beverages, three live bands, contests, kids’ activities, and more!

Oktoberfest – Iron Mountain – September 28

Join an authentic Bavarian Oktoberfest in downtown Iron Mountain. Family-friendly entertainment includes polka dancing, delicious German food, and sing-alongs.

Rondele Ranch Oktoberfest – Harshaw – September 21

This classic German celebration includes a beer tent, full liquor bar, live music, classic cars, remote control helicopters, multiple food trucks, and chainsaw carving. Admission is $5 per person.

Minocqua Brewing Company’s Octoberfest – Minocqua – October 12

Minocqua Brewing Company will be serving great Octoberfest beers from northern and central Wisconsin breweries and traditional German fare in the new Torpy Park Pavilion. The oompah of a live German brass band will serenade you as you savor your wiener schnitzel, brats, and black forest cake.

Festivals with a Unique Theme

Dancing Dragonfly Winery’s Grape Stomp Festival – St. Croix Falls – September 21–22

Dancing Dragonfly Winery, set in picturesque St. Croix Falls, just an hour away from the Twin Cities, will be celebrating autumn with a two-day festival featuring wine tastings, a grape stomp, live music, artisan vendors, food trucks, wagon rides, and children’s activities.

Project North Festival – Rhinelander – September 26–28

Eclectic concerts, thought-provoking art, and educational events honoring a commitment to environmental awareness will captivate downtown Rhinelander during the weekend-long event. This immersive festival aims to break down the walls between performer and audience by offering creative and transformative experiences for all who attend.

Camp 5 Steam Train Fall Festival and Cowboy Reenactment – Laona – September 28 and October 5

On September 28, Camp 5 will offer an award-winning Green Treasure Forest Tour, a corn maze, and a haunted slaughterhouse. Steam train rides will depart hourly from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Come back to Camp 5 on October 5 for an authentic cowboy reenactment and the robbery of the Lumberjack Steam Train.

Beef-A-Rama – Minocqua – September 28

This iconic event in the lake resort town of Minocqua features a Rump Roast Run, beef-eating contest, the Parade of Beef, and many quality vendors.

Zombie Days – Washburn – October 25–26

Zombies will take over this Chequamegon Bay town during this late-October event. There will be a zombie walk/run, a zombie pub crawl, zombie Zumba, and a zombie show choir in addition to a parade, haunted house, and pumpkin carving.

Big Water Film Festival – Ashland – November 6–9

With a chill in the early November air, it’s a perfect time to head inside and settle into your seat to see a variety of shorts and full-length films and documentaries at the Bay Theater in downtown Ashland.


Share this Post