The fall season hasn’t officially kicked off yet, but it’s just around the corner. Get in the spirit by planning your fall entertainment itinerary.
A variety of local and regional autumn events are in the works this season. Festivals will celebrate everything from film to food and heritage to harvests. Other events will offer statewide tours of picturesque lighthouses, take visitors on an exploration of old haunts, and offer exciting equestrian competition among the rolling landscape of scenic Fair Hill.
Here’s what’s happening this season:
NEWARK FILM FESTIVAL
The reels are rolling at the Newark Film Festival, which kicked off yesterday and continues through Sept. 11 at Cinema Center 3 in the Newark Shopping Center. The festival is celebrating its fourth year with more than 30 featured films and 112 screenings. For a complete schedule of movie times, visit the festival Web site at www.newarkfilm.com.
KENNETT SQUARE MUSHROOM FESTIVAL
Known as the Mushroom Capital of the World, Kennett Square, Pa., will host the 23rd annual Mushroom Festival this Saturday and Sunday. On the lineup of festival activities are a parade on Saturday at 10 a.m., a Dance Party on Saturday from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. and a street festival on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event will feature more than 160 food and craft vendors, an antique and classic car show, cooking demonstrations, mushroom-themed contests and more. Go to http://www.mushroomfestival.org">www.mushroomfestival.org.
HOME AND HEARTH DAY
Elk Landing will travel centuries back in time during Home and Hearth Day, taking place Sept. 13 at 10 a.m. Event-goers will experience 19th century life, taking part in hands-on activities such as candle making, butter churning, basket weaving and more. Participating in the festivities will be a barrel maker from Colonial Williamsburg, Va., a brew master from Pennsylvania, a wool spinner, furniture maker, and blacksmith. Elk Landing is at 590 Landing Lane, Elkton. Go to http://www.elklanding.org">www.elklanding.org.
Charlestown celebrates its maritime heritage during the 6th annual RiverFest, happening Sept. 13-14 on the grounds of The Wellwood Club and along Water Street. The two-day festival will include food and craft vendors, strolling entertainment, live music, a crabbing tournament and other waterfront activities. Go to http://www.charlestownriverfest.org">www.charlestownriverfest.org.
The Delaware Saengerbund will celebrate Oktoberfest Sept. 19-21 at 49 Salem Church Rd., Newark. A parade kicks off the festival on Friday at 7 p.m. Live music and traditional dancing will be provided throughout the weekend, as well as a variety of amusement rides and midway games. German specialties include Bratwurst, Weisswuurst, pretzels, Rollmops, potato salad and sauerkraut. The event takes place Friday from 5 to 11 p.m., Saturday from noon to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. Go to http://www.delawaresaengerbund.org">www.delawaresaengerbund.org or call 302-366-9454.
ELKTON FALL FEST
Elkton will celebrate the changing of the seasons with its annual street festival and Firefighter Combat Challenge Sept. 19-20. Opening the weekend entertainment Friday will be the Miss Fall Fest Contest from 6 to 7 p.m. and a performance by Motown music ensemble The Larry Tucker Band from 7 to 9 p.m. On Saturday, visitors will enjoy food and craft vendors, live music, a pretty baby contest and the Elkton Idol contest. The Firefighter Combat Challenge kicks off at 10 a.m. and continues throughout the day. Go to http://www.elktonfallfest.com">www.elktonfallfest.com.
MARYLAND LIGHTHOUSE CHALLENGE
The United States Lighthouse Society will host the sixth annual Maryland Lighthouse Challenge, happening Sept. 20-21. The event will highlight the state’s land-accessible lighthouses, including the Chesapeake Lightship, Concord Point, Cove Point, Drum Point, Fort Washington, Hooper Strait, Piney Point, Point Lookout, Seven-foot Knoll and Cecil County’s own Turkey Point Lighthouse. Throughout the self-guided driving tour, participants can collect a complimentary souvenir depicting each lighthouse they visit. Those who meet the challenge will be awarded with a special commemorative souvenir to mark their accomplishment. The event takes place from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. Go to http://www.cheslights.org">www.cheslights.org.
NORTH EAST YESTERDAY FESTIVAL
The town of North East will celebrate Colonial history during the annual Yesterday’s Festival, taking place Sept. 27 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. along Main Street. The event will feature historical arts and crafts demonstrations, children’s activities, live music, a magic show, antique cars, and a live and silent auction. Go to http://www.northeastchamber.org">www.northeastchamber.org.
MARYLAND BEER AND FOOD FEST
The Maryland Beer and Food Fest offers a taste of the season Sept. 27-28 at Ripken Stadium. Taking place simultaneously with the Harford Live Home and Garden Show, the event will feature hundreds of domestic, international and exotic brews and wines, as well as an array of mouth-watering concessions and gourmet food. Visitors can stop by the Celebrity Chef Tasting Tent, where local chefs will work to prepare signature dishes, or browse through the Farmers’ Market, offering the freshest cheese, vegetables and fruit. Live music will be performed throughout the weekend, and entertainment such as sumo wrestling, obstacle course challenges and other outdoor activities will be provided. Ripken Stadium is at 873 Long Dr., Aberdeen, Md. Go to http://www.mdbeerfoodfest.com">www.mdbeerfoodfest.com.
DARLINGTON APPLE FESTIVAL
Enjoy the fall harvest at the Darlington Apple Festival on Oct. 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Darlington, Md. The annual event will take place in downtown, rain or shine, and includes hundreds of food and craft vendors. An outdoor stage will feature live entertainment throughout the day, and a children’s area, offering games, pony rides, hay rides and scarecrow making, will be available. Visitors can stock up on the fall must-haves, including pumpkins, mums and apples. Go to http://www.darlingtonapplefest.org">www.darlingtonapplefest.org.
More than forty of the regions top microbreweries will join together in Kennett Square, Pa., Oct. 4 for Kennett Brewfest, held on South Broad Street from 2 to 6 p.m. Breweries include Samuel Adams, the Lancaster Brewing Company, the Appalachian Brewing Company and Boulder Beer. Live music will be performed throughout the day. Tickets must be purchased before the event and are available online at http://www.kennettbrewfest.com">www.kennettbrewfest.com.
HISTORIC HAUNTED GHOST WALK
Explore old haunts at Elk Landing Oct. 11 at 6 p.m. as author Ed Okonowicz returns with stories of the supernatural. The annual Historic Haunted Ghost Walk will include tales of Elk Landing’s haunting history and the spooks who may still roam the grounds. Elk Landing is at 590 Landing Lane, Elkton. Go to http://www.elklanding.org">www.elklanding.org.
Perryville kicks off the fall festivities with Autumnfest, happening Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Roundhouse Drive, adjacent to Rogers Tavern. The event begins with the Fall Appreciation Days Parade at 10 a.m. The parade, featuring marching units, antique vehicles and representatives from local organizations, will begin at Perryville Middle School and proceed to Broad Street, continuing on to Roundhouse Drive. A festival of food and craft vendors, live entertainment and family games will follow. Go to http://www.perryvillecc.org">www.perryvillecc.org.
FAIR HILL INTERNATIONAL
Athletes will demonstrate their equestrian skills Oct. 16-19 during Fair Hill International, taking place at the Fair Hill Natural Resources Area. The annual event draws competitors from across the country to compete in tests of dressage, endurance and stadium jumping. Throughout the four-day event, visitors will also enjoy dog agility trials, children’s activities, live music, exhibits, demonstrations and shopping. Go to http://www.fairhillinternational.com">www.fairhillinternational.com.
APPLE BUTTER FESTIVAL
Pick up a pint of homemade apple butter at the annual Apple Butter Festival Oct. 18, held at the Beehive on Route 273 in Fair Hill. The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Throughout the day, demonstrators will be on hand to whip up a fresh batch of the sticky, sweet fall treat. Also featured will be Colonial artisans, crafters and live music performances. Call 410-658-6220.