In this college town south of the Twin Cities, there's a fine-arts festival, tractor pulls, a bike tour, reenactments of the famous bank raid and a Sunday parade.
This northeast Illinois fair, held since 1888, features exhibits, entertainment and music plus harness racing, tractor pulls and demolition derbies.
This festival in central Iowa, just west of Ames is named for a steam engine and features Civil War battle reenactments, mud volleyball and rides on the Boone and Scenic Valley Railroad. A parade is Saturday.
Celebrate the whooping-crane migration with voyageur canoe trips, a marketplace, crane trivia, children's activities and bird walks.
This Minneapolis suburb features a street market and carnival; dachshund races, a craft-beer fest, water-ski show and fireworks on Saturday; and a parade on Sunday.
This lakefront festival features a powwow, canoe rides, Aztec dancers, lacrosse lessons and fireworks.
The Victorian estate on the Mississippi River hosts horses, restored carriages and drivers in period dress for competitive arena and cross-country sport driving, a passion of the frontier aristocrats who built it.
There will be more than 80 artists performing at more than 30 venues across the city, with some performances free and some ticketed.
There's an arts and crafts show, flower market, music, wine tasting and sampling of food from local restaurants.
This big festival in southwest Michigan wine country features music on three stages, Friday fireworks, an art fair, motorcycle and bicycle tours, grape stomps and a Sunday parade.
Listen to local, regional and national storytellers spin tales in Myrick Park.
This town between Rockford and Sycamore offers a Volksmarch along the Kishwaukee River and a Craft Beverage Fest on Saturday, a duck race and family games on Sunday and music all three days.
In Whiteside Park, there's an arts fair plus music, an old-time medicine show and pony rides and a petting zoo for kids.
This free, easygoing festival in this Minnesota River town's Minnesota Square Park includes local favorites The Divers.
The famous author's birthplace celebrates with kids' pioneer games, a spelling bee and traditional music and crafts; pie-eating, fiddle and Laura contests; and a 1 p.m. Sunday parade.
Alphornists, Scandinavian dancers and Anishinaabe drum and dance corps perform in this town on the shores of Leech Lake. There's also a parade at 11 a.m.
In Lanesboro, Whalan and Peterson on the Root River State Trail, enjoy music, wagon rides and free samples from local restaurants and growers.
Go on guided tours of Ashland's famous murals, meet the artists and go on a mural scavenger hunt. There's also food, music, crafts and a car show.
Help celebrate the 1962 crash landing of a 20-pound piece of Russia's Sputnik on a street in Manitowoc. There's a wacky costume contest, a Miss Space Debris pageant, a pet costume contest, a space-themed movie and music.
Ride a 15-, 30- or 45-mile route along the Mississippi, lakes Como and Phalen and St. Paul parkways, starting and ending at the University of St. Thomas and punctuated by food and live music.
This festival in Vasa Park, along the Fox River, features music, dancing, food and crafts from the Nordic countries.
This self-guided tour of homes on one of the nation's best-preserved Victorian streets is held only once every two years. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 on the day of the tour if available.
This town near Peoria, home of the Libby's pumpkin-packing plant, calls itself the Pumpkin Capital of the World and serves pumpkin ice cream, pancakes and fudge at its festival, which features a 10:30 a.m. Saturday parade.
The harbor-side North House Folk School celebrates with storytelling, traditional workshops, a fish boil and concerts by songwriter/musicians.
There's music on three stages, plus dance and session tents, a cultural village, Celtic Kitchen and limerick contest.
There's a juried arts and crafts show, street carnival and parade Sunday.
Meet the Narren, enter a sauerkraut-eating contest, listen to polka and zydeco and watch the daily parade.
In downtown's East Village, eat at more than 50 cultural cafes for $5 or less (or taste for $1), shop at the world marketplace or listen to musicians strolling the streets or on stage.
This festival is held every other year in the capital of cheese country, the home of Swiss Colony and the last Limburger factory. There's a cow-milking contest, yodeling, dancing, tours and a big parade at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.
There will be bed racing, polka lessons and German comedy shows in addition to music and dancing in Rice Park downtown.
Carlos Creek Winery hosts this festival, which features music on three stages, crafts, a logging show, Friday fire dancing and fireworks, grape stomps, "I Love Lucy'' look-alike contests and a reenactment of the Lucy "Grapes of Laugh'' episode.
In this western suburb of Chicago, famous for its Frank Lloyd Wright district, there's music, craft beer, food from local restaurants and, for kids, a root-beer garden, games and zucchini-car races.
This town just north of Madison celebrates with a craft-beer tasting, bike tour, music and lots of contests: frau carrying, yodeling, beer keg race, dachshund dash and Limburger cheese and sauerkraut eating.
This festival between Madison and Milwaukee is named for the German word for a cozy and congenial atmosphere. It includes sauerkraut-eating, nail-driving, facial hair and costume contests, a vintage car show, music and a parade at noon Sunday.
There's a pumpkin regatta — yes, people paddling hollowed-out pumpkins across Cedar Creek — at the fest in this historic mill town just north of Milwaukee. There's also a scarecrow contest, grape stomp, hay rides, juried arts fair and lots of food.
No one's more fun than a voyageur, and they'll be dancing, boasting and trying to best one another at this family-friendly event at the North West Company Fur Post, an hour north of the Twin Cities. For the kids, there's a bead scramble, candle-dipping and a scavenger hunt.
This festival in northwest Illinois features live music and wine-tasting from 25 Illinois vineyards.
The parade begins in Hancock and ends in Houghton at Dee Stadium, where there's a festival with music, dancing and food from around the world.
On the Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail, sample local treats, listen to music, visit the National Trout Center, take wagon rides and play games.
See the Parade of Nations, an international bazaar and music on the World Stage.
See early fall color around this town in Nicolet National Forest. There's pumpkin-chucking, pumpkin and scarecrow contests, a craft fair, car show, hay rides and free chili and deep-fried pickles.
There will be pig races, a pig-calling contest, pig crafts, an amateur bacon cook-off and many bacon dishes, including ice cream.
This street festival in the Bay View neighborhood includes music on four stages, a children's area, cooking demonstrations and a strong man competition.
See the new art installations at Franconia Sculpture Park, just west of town, and watch art in progress. There will also be music, food and art-making for the whole family, including spin art and face-painting.
More than 150 historic buildings — theaters, breweries, mansions, cathedrals, hotels, museums — are open to the public, and many offer free guided tours. More than three dozen in-depth walking tours also are offered but sell out quickly.
On the shore of Lake Minnetonka, there's an artisan fair, apple pie-eating contest, music and a street dance.
Ride 16, 25 or 32 miles on parkways along the Mississippi and the Chain of Lakes. Start and finish is Boom Island, along the river in northeast Minneapolis; there's a party afterward with food, music and beer.
This family-oriented festival in Prairie Island Park, on the Mississippi River, features disc golf, paddling and airplane rides as well as music. A weekend pass includes camping and canoeing, and kids under 16 are free with an adult ticket.
In the old lead-mining district in southwest Wisconsin, play shove ha'penny in the Kiddleywink Pub, eat figgyhobbin and pasties, listen to tommyknocker tales and tour Cornish miners' cottages.
There'll be arts and crafts and music in this southwest Wisconsin village. The big parade is Sunday.
Tour five private homes and the History Museum in this picturesque town in northwest Illinois.
There will be music, dancing, children's games and lock and dam tours in this antebellum town on the Mississippi River.
In the colorful northwest woods, there'll be hay rides, corn maze, a chili cook-off, fish boil, arts and crafts and fireworks.
At this huge festival in west-central Wisconsin, there'll be marsh tours, pie-eating contests and more than 1,300 booths selling antiques, produce and arts and crafts. The big parade is at 2 p.m. Sunday.
This Mennonite community just southwest of Iowa City, famous for its quilts, offers pony rides, a pumpkin-carving contest, demonstrations of Old World artisanry, music and homemade potato chips, apple fritters, ice cream and chicken, biscuits and gravy.
In this northern Wisconsin lake-resort town, there's a Rump Roast Run, beef-eating contest and Parade of Beef.
Take polka-dancing lessons, enter the Bier Maiden or stein-holding contests and win costume prizes at this outdoor fest under tents downtown.
This festival at the Rock Island County Fairgrounds includes balloon glows, launches, tethered rides and a play area for children.
In this Brainerd-area lake town, watch 12 professional carvers turn logs into art. There will also be lumberjack/jill shows, horse racing, artisan booths and children's games.
It's the Iowa Barn Foundation's annual free, self-guided tour of restored historic barns.
Battles are reenacted at this festival at the Wade House historic site near Sheboygan. There's also a traveling medicine show, court martials, a sutler's row, period concerts and appearances by Abraham Lincoln.
Music, food and a juried art show along the St. Croix River, in Lakefront Park.
There's an arts and crafts fair, children's games, contests and live music downtown.
Midway Village Museum hosts one of the largest World War II battle re-enactments in the nation, with more than 1,200 uniformed re-enactors and more than 60 vintage tanks and other armored vehicles.
On the Root River State Trail, sample local food, listen to music, tour a museum and visit with Alice the owl.
In this northwest suburb of Chicago, there's pumpkin bowling, a pumpkin train and petting zoo, apple contests, music and a craft fair.
Beer-barrel relay races, polka lessons, a farm market and a tug of war are part of this downtown festival. The Sault International Marathon is held in the morning.
Racine's biggest street festival features five stages of entertainment and a car show, art walk, carnival rides and zones for kids and sports.
The Iowa City Brewfest is part of this festival, which includes keg bowling, beer sliding and nail-striking as well as a SodaFest with pop and stage entertainment for kids.
This large downtown festival is more general civic celebration than German festival, with an arts and crafts show, car show and music on five stages.
In addition to a juried art show, the festival in this town at the start of the Lake Wobegon Trail also features music, street performances, horse-drawn trolley rides, history tours and a vintage car and tractor show.
The festival in this town on the Illinois River between Ottawa and Joliet offers stagecoach and train rides, a crackerbox derby, a pie-eating contest, music, a carnival, Saturday fireworks and a parade at 2 p.m. Sunday.
At this big riverfront festival, there's food, music and carnival rides, plus the opening Torchlight Parade and the Maple Leaf Parade on Saturday morning.
There's German music and food at this Amana Colonies village, plus contests that include the Eisenmann, or Iron Man, competition: Teams roll kegs, walk a balance beam with full steins of beer and saw logs. The parade is at 10 a.m. Saturday.
This downtown festival features live music and local food, beer, wine and fine art.
This southern Minnesota festival is great for families, with a voyageur encampment of more than 1,000 reenactors dancing, demonstrating, competing and pulling visitors back into the fur-trade era.
In the bluffs above Trempealeau, this festival features a 10-foot apple pie, a hunt for a Silver Apple, a race of floating wooden apples and a bicycle tour with a 20-mile route through apple orchards and hillier 35- and 60-mile routes.
This town near Wisconsin Rapids calls itself the Giant Pumpkin Capital of Wisconsin and features a pumpkin-pie eating contest, pumpkin rolling and carving, a carnival and craft show.
The Lions Club puts on this riverfront festival, which includes wiener-dog races, polka lessons, nail-driving, pumpkin-decorating and a beanbag tournament.
This festival at Stronghold Conference Center features swordfighters, minstrels, magicians and the Gremlin's Garden for children.
In town, more strolling performers appear at the Autumn on Parade Festival, and the Harvest Time Parade is on Sunday.
This fest in the scenic hills of southwest Wisconsin is not only about pickles and sourdough bread but also cheese, chocolate, beer and wine. There are classes, tastings, performances, the 50-mile Farm/Art DTour, with Roadside Culture Stands, and Bike the DTour.
This fest features dancing, dachshund races and lots of contests: frankfurter eating, stein holding and barrel rolling.
This town west of Madison offers fjord horses, buggy rides, a Norwegian breakfast, a mini tractor pull, rosemaling and lefse-making demonstrations and photo opps with Jorgen the Troll.
The festival in this town next to big Horicon Marsh features bed races, a bike tour, rubber-duck races and parade at 11 p.m. Sunday.
Drive through bluff country to see 56 artists at 43 sites around Decorah, Burr Oak, St. Lucas, Waukon, West Union, Cresco, New Albin, Lansing, Elgin and Clermont.
There's a big scarecrow contest plus a carnival and the Autumn on the Fox arts show in this town west of Chicago.
Listen to the blues at the historic Indian Crossing Casino.
Every year, this northern suburb of Chicago tries to break the record for most lighted jack-o-lanterns. In addition to all-you-can-carve stations, there will be costume, pie-eating and carving contests and a parade at noon Sunday.
John Wayne was born there, George Washington Carver lived there and the famous covered bridges still are there. The festival in this town southwest of Des Moines features guided bus tours to the bridges, free horse-drawn wagon rides to Wayne's house, Old West shootouts, live music and a parade at 2 p.m. Sunday.
There's a juried fine arts/arts and crafts fair, farmers market, wine garden, bake shop, music and children's games in Grant Park.
In the southeast corner of Iowa, 11 villages feature quilt shows, scarecrow contests, bake sales, tours of historic sites, wine tasting and street fairs.
This festival just north of Milwaukee features music and food plus goofy contests: best lederhosen/dirndl, sauerkraut-eating, a German spelling bee and a live Glockenspiel show.
There'll be music, children's games and arts and crafts in this Door County village.
There will be wagon rides, music, magic, free pumpkins and crafts on downtown streets.
There's a juried show of more than 90 artists downtown, plus music and food.
This Lake Michigan beach town offers wine and craft-beer tasting, hay rides, pumpkin painting, live music and fine arts.
There will be a pumpkin pie-eating contest, a pumpkin regatta on the St. Croix River, a microbrew tasting and a pedal tractor pull.
This Civil War festival off I-80, half an hour west of Starved Rock State Park, includes battle re-enactments both days.
There will also be a Grand Entrance parade with the Lincolns, a Lincoln look-alike contest, medical scenarios and period music and dance.
There's a pumpkin-carving contest, kids' inflatables, pumpkin roll and, in the evening, a zombie run in the forest, bonfires and live music.
See old-time artisanry at the Swiss Historical Village, including sausage-stuffing and cheese-making in the 1890s cheese factory.
The street party in this northern Illinois town, gateway to Starved Rock State Park, features vats of "pioneer'' stew, a crafts fair and music.
There's music, food, dachshund racing and stein-hoisting and brat-eating competitions in Veteran's Park.
On Saturday, there are hayrides, pony rides, music and arts and crafts, pumpkin decorating, a straw dig and a scarecrow-stuffing contest.
Also on Saturday, chat with brewmasters and sample beer from Wisconsin breweries at Wisconsin Dells on Tap.
This Door County festival features pumpkin bowling, chainsaw carving, a pingpong-ball drop and a parade at 11 a.m. Saturday.
This popular studio tour includes artists at studios between Mineral Point, Spring Green, Dodgeville and Baraboo.
Solve a mystery by lantern light at the re-created North West Company Fur Post, an hour north of the Twin Cities. The program is family-friendly, and reservations are recommended.
In this Lake Michigan town, there's a pumpkin-carving contest, children's activities and an arts and crafts show.
This town in the southwest corner of Minnesota concentrates on the supernatural, with a ghost walk, ghost hunt, cemetery tour and tales from the grave.
Stop by the studios of more than 400 artists downtown and in the Raymond-University area. On Saturday, there's also a St. Paul Classical Music Crawl, with more than 20 mini-concerts on the hour and half-hour throughout Lowertown.
At Heritage Hill Historical Park, meet Wizards and Witches, test your magic skills and fill your cauldron with candy.
The Chicago Architecture Foundation sponsors this free, behind-the-scenes peek at more than 200 mansions, clubs, churches, hotels and theaters.
This downtown festival near Lake Geneva features wine and beer tasting, music, a car show, arts and crafts and a chili cookoff.
This big fest features readings, lectures, book discussions, writing workshops, live interviews and children's events.
This Lake Superior town offers a medallion hunt, family geocaching contest, fun run, appearances by Murray the Moose and family courses at the North House Folk School.
This downtown festival includes hayrides, a scarecrow contest, pumpkin-chucking, zombie runs, a pet-costume parade and a haunted asylum at the Maritime Museum.
This town, just north of Minneapolis, calls itself the Halloween Capital of the World. Festivities include a Light up the Night parade Oct. 22, pumpkin-carving and house-decoration contests and a 1 p.m. Grand Day Parade Oct. 29.
A cultural festival around Millennium Park includes mask-making workshops, tarot readings, ghost stories, a disco line, improv comedy, a children's costume procession with treats and a lighted parade along Columbus Avenue at 6 p.m.
This Fox River town hosts a pumpkin roll, hay rides, pumpkin-seed spitting contest, "Thriller'' dances, marshmallow shooting and a parade at 11:50 a.m.
Enter a pie-eating contest, listen to bands, go on a horse-drawn wagon ride and watch a pumpkin-catapult contest and quilt auction at Carlos Creek Winery.
The festival in this town, just west of Racine, features a pumpkin catapult contest, barbecue cook-off, pie auction, pumpkin-baking contest, children's games and music.
This bluff-country town, the southern trailhead of the Harmony-Preston Valley State Trail, celebrates Halloween with pumpkin decorating, lantern tours of nearby Niagara Cave, a costume contest and a 4 p.m. parade.
This family festival along Grand Avenue features a petting zoo, a children's karaoke contest and pony rides.
In this town between Rockford and DeKalb, there will be a pie-eating contest, carnival, craft shows, decorated pumpkins and a parade Sunday.
There will be mask making, pumpkin carving, trick or treating and a Halloween parade at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.
This all-ages evening spectacle in Hidden Falls Regional Park features larger-than-life puppetry, fire, song, stilting and, after the performance, food and dancing to the Brass Messengers, Jack Brass Band and Jazzland Wonderband.
This year's theme is "You Were Once Wild Here.'' Suggested donation is $10-$20.
Zombies will take over this town on Chequamegon Bay, with zombie Zumba, a zombie show choir, a zombie walk/run and a zombie pub crawl, as well as a haunted house, pumpkin carving and a parade.
There's a craft fair, kids' games and a Forbidden Forest, but the 1 p.m. parade is the main event in this riverside village just south of Madison, where residents reported more than a dozen UFO sightings in the winter of 1987.
The town's annual parade is along Main Street at 6:30 p.m.
This fest along State Street features music on two stages, outdoor horror movies, a costume contest with prizes and much sampling at bars.
In Walker Square Park, there will be an art market, ofrenda-making, Aztec dancers and a 1 p.m. parade.
Visit three parks just west of town, Heritage Village, McGulpin Point Lighthouse and Headlands International Dark Sky Park, for spooky but family-friendly surprises. There's a free trolley between Heritage Village and the lighthouse, and admission is free.
In the northeast arts district, 250 visual artists team with musicians and writers for this free festival.
Listen to experts discuss Lake Superior shipwrecks and maritime history and join tours of the aquarium and Coast Guard Center.
This festival features the creative processes of musicians, artists, comedians, writers, thinkers, scientists, magicians. Russian activists Pussy Riot will speak, and musicians include Wu Fei and the Duluth band Low.
It's at 11 a.m. downtown.
Attend demonstrations and seminars on more than 150 breeds at Alliant Energy Center.
See a variety of shorts, full-length films and documentaries at the Bay Theater downtown.
This event, which commemorates the 1975 sinking of the ore freighter with 29 men, is the only time the public can see the interior of the light tower when the beacon is lighted.
The fourth edition of this festival features a wave dash, shipwreck stories, and children's activities.
The nation's largest operating model railroad show includes more than 60 scenic railroads, clinics for hobbyists and a Kids' Activity Zone with racing trains, face painting and a Circus Train.
This free festival northwest of Des Moines showcases more than 100 Iowa artists, poets and musicians in seven venues, including the Hotel Pattee, in the downtown historic and cultural district. There will also be children's activities.
The expo at the Midwest Mountaineering store on the West Bank includes dozens of speakers and seminars about skiing, sled-dog racing and ice-climbing as well as camping, backpacking and other year-round adventures.
There's a tent encampment, winter skills seminars, Arctic film festival and chili feed at the North House Folk School.
This event at the Museum of Contemporary Art and Overture Center features fine art, music, treats and the Rediscovered Art & Treasures Sale.
Celebrate global cultures at the Hjemkomst Center, with folk dancing, storytelling, music and foods from seven countries. Children can pick up a passport to get stamped at booths.