From active to relaxing, urban to natural, quirky to conventional, and everything in between, our A to Z list of Northwest Arkansas must-dos this fall spells F-U-N!
A – AUTUMN VIEWS FOR MILES!
Take in the dazzling fall foliage aboard the Arkansas & Missouri Railroad excursion train! It departs from Springdale and travels over trestles, through a quarter-mile tunnel, all the way to the top of the scenic Boston Mountains and back again.
B – BRING OUT YOUR INNER BAVARIAN!
Pull out your steins and head to Rogers Main Street’s OktobeerFest on Oct. 7 for traditional Bavarian food, games, music and of course there will be beer! Yodel Yum!
C – CHEFS IN THE GARDEN AT BGO
The finest chefs cook up harvest season favorites Sept. 12 at Botanical Garden of the Ozarks. Stroll through the themed gardens while checking out cooking demonstrations, sampling dishes and sipping premium beverages.
D – DEMOLITION DERBY
Feel the frenzy of metal crushing on Sept. 30 at the 12th Annual Demolition Derby at Parsons Stadium in Springdale. Watch wild competitors deliberately and skillfully smash into each other’s cars to claim victory and big prize money!
E – EUREKA SPRINGS CORVETTE WEEKEND
Relax and have fun with hundreds of fellow Corvette fans at this annual event Oct. 5-8. No competition, no points to win or lose, just a lot of ogling and driving of America’s favorite sports car!
F – FOODIE SCENE: HOTTER THAN EVER
Award-winning chefs, locally owned farm-to-table and High South cuisine – NWA’s hip eateries are routinely recognized as national dining destinations! Whether you’re grabbing a causal bite at a street-side food truck, or entertaining clients over three sit-down courses, our fine cities have what you’re hungry for!
G – GET CRAFTY AT FALL FAIR WEEK
Northwest Arkansas has long held a rich arts and maker culture, and every October we are home to some of the premier arts and crafts fairs in the country! From Bella Vista south to Fayetteville and all parts in between, crafts fair weekend is not to be missed!
H – HALLOWEEN MONSTER DASH
A new healthy way to trick-or-treat! The Halloween Monster Dash on Oct. 29 in Fayetteville lets you run or walk in a 5K and pick up treats along the way! Or if you prefer a more traditional Halloween, check out the Nightmares Haunted House in Bentonville – crazy scary!
I – INTRIGUE AT THE AUD IN EUREKA
A Eureka Springs tradition, this annual Halloween show on Oct. 28 at the City Auditorium features Intrigue Theater illusionists who “pass” through walls, talk to spirits, and execute other feats challenging reality.
J – JAZZ UP YOUR NITE W/ JASON MORAN!
Spend an evening with jazz innovator Jason Moran as Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art welcomes him to the Distinguished Speaker Series on Sept 21. Hear about 20th century painters Moran has been influenced by, while he punctuates his talk with short jazz performances.
K – KNOCK BACK (OR SIP!) A LOCAL BREW
The craft beer scene is thriving in Northwest Arkansas! With the number of local breweries there’s always a chance to try new brews, ales and ciders, visit bars and eateries and celebrate our growing craft beer culture. You’ll never be left with an empty glass!
L – LOVE THE DRAMA!
M – MOUNTAIN BIKING: TOP TRAILS IN NWA
Every season is mountain biking season in Northwest Arkansas! With 200+ miles of trails criss-crossing the region, the only jump park of its kind in this part of the country, and our welcoming cycling community, NWA is your mountain biking sweet spot!
N – NAVIGATE THE MAIZE
Get lost in Cave Springs at the Ozark Corn Maze! Besides the wrong turns and dead ends, there’s a petting zoo, a pumpkin patch to pick your own and a ‘corn cannon’ to test your skills!
O – OUTDOOR FUN & ADVENTURE
With the best of Mother Nature at our lakes, rivers, trails and state and national parks, plus the Slaughter Pen Jam Mountain Bike Festival on Oct. 8-10, get ready to immerse yourself in outdoor fun and adventure Northwest Arkansas-style!
P – PLAYING IN THE DIRT WEEKEND
This Nov. 10-12 event mixes it up to celebrate 30 years of mountain biking in NWA! First, a benefit concert at the George’s Majestic Lounge, followed by a day of mountain biking at Devil’s Den State Park, and then mingling at an evening cocktail gala.
Q – QUILT FAIR AT SHILOH MUSEUM
Nothing quite compares with the beauty of a handcrafted quilt. Find antique and contemporary quilts for show and sale at this 40th annual fair held at Shiloh Museum of Ozark History on Sept. 9 in Springdale.
R – RAZORBACK SPORTS NATION!
In Northwest Arkansas, we call the Hogs year ‘round! Whether you’re a football or basketball fan, check out all that our beloved Razorbacks are offering in the 2017-18 season!
S – SQUARE 2 SQUARE BIKE RIDE
This 30-mile fun ride on Sept. 16 goes from Bentonville to Fayetteville via the Northwest Arkansas Razorback Regional Greenway. This ride has grown leaps and bounds since it kicked off in 2015, and a crowd of close to 1,700 is expected!
T – TINKERFEST AT THE AMAZEUM
This Oct. 7 festival celebrates the curious and creative in all of us! Together, makers, artists, and tinkerers showcase their work while inviting attendees of all ages to join in the DIY fun.
U – UNDERGROUND ART DOWNTOWN
The Fayetteville Underground art gallery presents a new exhibit each month, and through November, the Underground’s openings are part of Fayetteville First Thursday celebrations on the downtown square. Everyone is welcome!
V – VINTAGE MARKET DAYS
Grab your girlfriends, your mother or your kids for the very best of vintage vendors from across the U.S! This upscale vintage-inspired, indoor/outdoor market on Oct. 13-15 features the works, and is a favorite with locals.
W – WE LOVE PUBLIC ART!
Northwest Arkansas has embraced public art and made it our own! In Fayetteville, it’s popping up everywhere as part of the Green Candy public art initiative. Look around – murals by international and local artists are activating outdoor public spaces all over downtown. Large-scale paintings are appearing in other cities too, from a gigantic blue octopus in Bentonville to a giant jack rabbit along the Razorback Regional Greenway.
X – XNA NONSTOP FLIGHTS TO NWA
Fly your long-distance friends to NWA this fall for Bikes, Blues and BBQ, Arts and Crafts Fair week, or Razorbacks sports action! With the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport (XNA)’s nonstop flights from 14 U.S. cities, you can!
Y – YUCK IT UP OVER COCKTAILS
On Oct. 5, mix, mingle and sample cocktails infused with herbs grown onsite at the Peel Mansion gardens as mixologists compete to create the best beverage! An assortment of amazing bites will be available to accompany your fabulous chilled concoctions.
Z – ZOMBIE CRAWL
A creeping parade procession of funeral hearses and post-mortem street performers will lead the undead through downtown Eureka Springs on Oct. 28 for the 6th Annual Zombie Crawl. Need some practice before the parade? Check out the free “Thriller” dance workshop!