The calendar is packed with great events this October in Virginia’s Blue Ridge!
We’re in the full swing of fall festivals, performing arts, and fun outdoor adventures that showcase the beautiful fall foliage of the region.
Are you ready for an autumn getaway to the Blue Ridge Mountains? Here are 50 fun events to check out during your next visit!
1. DRIVE! Iconic American Cars & Motorcycles
Taubman Museum of Art
This special ticketed exhibition at the Taubman Museum of Art features an incredible collection of American-made cars and motorcycles that will change your perspective on automobiles as art.
2. Disney Junior Dance Party on Tour
Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and many of your favorite Disney junior characters will make appearances in this live show that the kids will love.
3. Salem Museum’s Ghost Walks
East Hill Cemetery - October 4-6
Sherwood Memorial Park - 11-13
Who says encounters with ghosts have to be scary? These ghost walks organized by the Salem Museum & Historical Society are fun & informative!
4. Noises Off
This production, written by Tony Award winning playwright Michael Frayn, features lots of slapstick comedy, slamming doors, and fast-paced fun!
5. The Meek’s Manor Fall Season
The Meek’s Manor
October 4 - November 3 | Thursday - Saturday
It’s always a frightening encounter when you step into the world of the Meeks family and their terrifying haunted house!
6. West Side Story
Mill Mountain Theatre
October 4-20 | Wednesday - Saturday
A Broadway favorite for more than 60 years, West Side Story is based on Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet and tells the tale of warring families through teen-aged gangs and star-crossed lovers.
7. Fall Party Ride
Find your best, most obnoxious night-time party attire for you and your bicycle and get ready for a great time and fun group ride with the gang from Downshift Bikes!
8. Tom Petty Tribute: The Wildflowers
Dr Pepper Park at The Bridges
Jump into the time machine and enjoy this Flashback Friday concert that features the iconic music of Tom Petty with a performance by The Wildflowers, a popular Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers tribute band.
9. Smith Mountain Lake Home Tour
Smith Mountain Lake - Franklin County
See some of the most beautiful homes and get inspiration for home decorating and architectural design by taking part in this unique home tour where the properties are accessible via car or boat.
10. Jeter Farm Fall Festival & Country Store
October 5-28 | Friday - Sunday
Pick the perfect pumpkin, race your friends through the corn maze, and snap a few selfies with the adorable farm animals at Jeter Farm!
11. Layman Family Farms Fall Festival
Layman Family Farms
October 5 - November 11 | Friday - Sunday
What’s your favorite part of fall? Is it the pumpkins? Is it the hay rides? Is it the corn maze? It’s all part of the fun of a Blue Ridge Day at the Layman Family Farms Fall Festival.
12. You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown
The Roanoke Children’s Theatre bring the classic characters of the Peanuts comic strip to life with its production of You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.
13. Mountain Magic in Fall Bluegrass, Antiques & Crafts Festival
Buchanan Town Park
Now in its 24th year, the Mountain Magic in Fall Bluegrass, Antiques & Crafts Festival is a wonderful showcase of the charm and history of the town of Buchanan in Botetourt County.
14. Marine Mud Run & Devil Dog Dare
Green Hill Park
You’ll never have more fun getting dirty than by participating in the various race options at the 23rd annual Marine Mud Run & Devil Dog Dare in Green Hill Park.
15. Generic Magic Festival: The Green Castle!
Taubman Museum of Art
Calling all witches and wizards for a great day that includes spell casting, ghost talks, and a celebration of all things magic.
16. Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day
What better place to take part in Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day than in America’s East Coast Mountain Biking Capital?! This free event at Explore Park will include games, instructions on the fundamentals of mountain biking, skills challenges, and group trail rides.
17. Virginia’s Blue Ridge Creature from Carvins Cove
The 3rd annual Creature from Carvins Cove mountain bike race will feature an XXC course, XC course, and the first ever Enduro course at Carvins Cove!
18. 2018 Kroger Cup
Youth soccer teams from throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast will be traveling to Virginia’s Blue Ridge to take part in the 15th annual Kroger Cup, organized and hosted by VBR Star Soccer Club.
19. Henry Street Festival
The 29th annual Henry Street Festival presents the rich African American history and heritage of Virginia’s Blue Ridge through a great day filled with entertainment, crafts, cuisine, customs and merchandise.
20. The Great Pumpkin Smash
Dr Pepper Park at The Bridges
Take your love of pumpkin to the next level at The Great Pumpkin Smash, a food & drink festival at Dr Pepper Park at The Bridges where pumpkin is the star of the show!
21. Jake Owen
Salem Civic Center
Jake Owen is bringing country music’s hottest beach tour to Virginia’s Blue Ridge with a stop at the Salem Civic Center as part of his “Life’s Watcha Make It Tour” that also features Tyler Farr and Morgan Wallen as special guests.
22. Menopause the Musical
The 2018-19 season of Broadway in Roanoke at Berglund Center kicks off with Menopause the Musical, a comedy and musical parody that has had millions of women laughing for the past 17 years.
23. KISS Tribute: Kiss America
Dr Pepper Park at The Bridges
KISS America performs in full make-up and costumes and provides the smoking guitars, fire breathing, and insane drum solos you’ve come to expect from a KISS show. See them in concert on October 12 at Dr Pepper Park!
24. Mavis Staples
A member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Grammy Award winner, Mavis Staples has been influential in gospel, R&B, blues, hip hop and nearly every other kind of music over the past 60 years.
25. Wine, Moon & Stars
Virginia Mountain Vineyards
Make it a night of stargazing and wine tasting in the beautiful setting of Virginia Mountain Vineyards in Botetourt County.
26. Roanoke GO Outside Festival
River’s Edge Sports Complex
Test out new outdoor gear, get down to the awesome live music, and check out some of the great live shows and demonstrations at this free 3-day festival that has become one of the region’s most popular annual events!
27. Agent of Good Roots
5 Points Music Sanctuary
The Richmond-based band brings their blend of jazz, classical, pop, and alternative rock to the stage at the 5 Points Music Sanctuary for the first time!
28. Carvins Cove Mountain Bike Challenge
The Carvins Cove Mountain Bike Challenge is a race for riders of all ages and skill levels, with three different course options and special categories for first-time racers and a family team relay.
29. LewisGale Salem Half Marathon
Salem Farmers Market
A half marathon in Virginia’s Championship City? The City of Salem presents a half marathon with a course that incorporates the beautiful sights and sounds of the city and a great atmosphere of friends & family cheering you on.
30. Smith Mountain Lake Oktoberfest & 5K Trail Race/Walk
Westlake Towne Center
Chow down on German-style food and Oktoberfest beer while listening to The Sauerkraut Band perform German-style music in traditional Bavarian attire.
31. Annual Kids Fishing Derby
Waid Recreation Area
Kids 15 & under will love getting the opportunity to fish the Pigg River, which will be freshly stocked with over 1,000 trout.
32. Vinton Fall Festival
Vinton Farmers Market
There’s fall fun for everyone with the kids activities, games, food, arts & craft vendors, and live entertainment at the annual Vinton Fall Festival.
33. Roanoke Valley Comicon
Enter the costume contest, browse through impressive collections of comic books, action figures & cards, and connect with other anime and comic enthusiasts.
34. Craftsmen’s Fall Classic Art & Craft Festival
With hundreds of artists and craftspeople participating and showcasing thousands of one-of-a-kind pieces, the Craftsmen’s Fall Classic Art & Craft Festival has become known as one of the premier art & craft shows in the Southeast.
35. Virginia’s Blue Ridge Gran Fondo
Ballast Point Brewing Company
Enjoy a wonderful day of road cycling through the countryside of Botetourt County and then relax afterwards with post-ride food and drink at Ballast Point Brewing Company.
36. Opera Roanoke Fall Gala Concert
Opera Roanoke’s fall gala concert at the Jefferson Center will provide “opera to die for” with features from the last acts of four different operas.
37. Broadway A to Z: Abba to Les Mis!
Salem Civic Center
This Roanoke Symphony Orchestra concert will incorporate many of the greatest Broadway hits of all time, including songs from Les Miserables, Guys and Dolls, Rent, West Side Story, and other classics.
38. Tracy Morgan
One of the most popular and respected comedians of his time, Tracy Morgan has been known for his stand-up comedy, work as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, and in the hit TV show 30 Rock.
39. Concerts by Canoe at Calico Cliffs
Register now as space is limited for this incredible experience that will feature a guided paddle along Philpott Lake and a private concert on the water by Seph Custer.
40. Shelter Fun Frolic
Peaks of Otter Winery
Bring your four-legged furry friends along for a walk and visit the farm animals as you make your way around the grounds of the Peaks of Otter Winery & Orchards.
41. Stargazing with a NPS Ranger
Take in the beauty of the starlit sky in Virginia’s Blue Ridge with a night of stargazing at the Pine Mountain Overlook, located on the Roanoke River Parkway between the Blue Ridge Parkway and Explore Park.
42. Star City Truck Stop - Food Truck Rodeo
Village Grill Restaurant - Grandin Village
Roanoke’s tastiest truck stop is back with the return of the Food Truck Rodeo in Grandin Village! It’s a delicious lineup of many of the region’s most popular food trucks.
43. Fall Colors Canoe Excursion
See the fall colors of Virginia’s Blue Ridge from the water by participating in this canoe excursion hosted by Play Roanoke. Be sure to register in advance!
44. Roof Top Riot - Mended Fences
Center in the Square
Join one of Roanoke’s most popular after-hours parties by heading to the rooftop of Center in the Square for the Roof Top Riot event!
45. Charenée Wade
An up-and-coming jazz artist, Charenée Wade is known for her amazing vocal ability with a sound similar to Betty Carter & Sarah Vaughan.
46. Hoot & Holler: In the Shadows
Mountain View Center
Can you handle a chilling night of unexplained spooks, spirits and bumps in the night? If so, register for a spot at this Hoot & Holler in the Shadows at Fishburn Mansion!
47. Big Church Night Out: Crowder, Jordan Feliz, Sarah Reeves & More!
Salem Civic Center
The 2nd annual Big Church Night Out will provide a night of worship, entertainment, great music, prayer, laughter, reflection and community, in an event and setting designed for everyone.
48. Old Dominion
Before Matthew Ramsey and Whit Sellers became members of Old Dominion, one of the hottest bands in country music, they were performing in their high school bands in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. Now, they return to perform at Berglund Center as Academy of Country Music Award winners with numerous Billboard chart-topping hits.
49. Open Studios Botetourt
Various Studios & Galleries - Botetourt County
14 artists will have their art on display in 11 different studios that are part of this year’s Open Studios Tour of Botetourt County. Don’t forget to pick up a passport card at your first stop and get it stamped at each location you visit.
50. Rowdy Dawg Mountain Bike Race
Pandapas Pond Recreation Area
Riders from throughout the Mid-Atlantic will get rowdy at this full day of racing that includes categories for various skill levels and a grueling course.
The events are one of the reasons fall is a great time for a visit to Virginia’s Blue Ridge. You’ll also want to take advantage of our list of the best spots to see fall colors and find out the perfect time to see peak fall foliage this year.
Keep up other more exciting things happening in the region by signing up to receive our free e-newsletter.