5 Local Fall Festivals in 2010

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From cotton candy and roasted corn to Midway rides, ring tosses and petting zoos, fall festivals and fairs are always a favorite for kids and kids at heart.


Matthews Alive

When: Sept. 3-6; Fri. 6:30-10:30pm; Sat., 9am-9pm; Sun., noon-9pm; and Mon., 9am-5pm

Where: Downtown Matthews, 120 S. Trade St., Matthews

Cost: Free

Launch into Labor Day weekend at this family festival complete with one of the largest parades in the Southeast, as well as three stages that feature live entertainment, including the Kid’s Stage with every sort of fun-filled children’s entertainment imaginable. Indulge both your curiosity and your taste buds; sift through the products of more than 150 arts and crafts vendors, and savor the creations of 30 food vendors. Proceeds support local nonprofit organizations. For more information, call 704-814-9779 or go online to www.matthewsalive.org.


Yiasou Greek Festival

When: Sept. 10-13; Thurs., 11am-9pm; Fri., 11am-10pm; Sat., 11am-10pm

Where: Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 600 East Blvd.

Cost: Adults $2; Free for ages 12 and under

Go Greek at this annual cultural celebration of fine food, facts and art. Sample homemade assorted pastries, savor Grecian baked chicken, and snack on a tender souvlaki sandwich while listening to live music and watching students perform tradition Greek dances. This year, there will be an enactment of the traditional Athenian Changing of the Guards and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier to honor fallen fighters. Children can enjoy the mini-Midway with rides, face painting and more. For more information, call 704-344-4771 or go online to www.yiasoufestival.org.


Festival in the Park

When: Sept. 23-26; Thurs., 6-9pm; Fri. and Sat., 10am-9:30pm; and Sun., 11am-6pm

Where: Freedom Park, 1900 East Blvd.

Cost: Free

A perennial favorite festival for Charlotteans, Festival in the Park comes to life each year with live music in the band shell, lights in the tents of the Camelot exhibit, kids inflatables and other activities, and 150 artists and crafts people showcasing their creations. For more information, call 704-332-1800 or go online to www.festivalinthepark.org.


Mint Hill Madness

When: Sept. 24-26; Fri., 6-10pm; Sat., 9:30am-10pm; and Sun., 10am-5pm

Where: Downtown Mint Hill, Matthews Mint Hill Road and Lawyers Road

Cost: Free

Entertainment options abound for the entire family with live music, amusement rides, Queen City Dancing performances and a parade. Test your own singing talents at the 107.9 The Link Karaoke Stage. Also look to the sky for a CMC Medical Center Flyover and fireworks. For more information, call 704-545-9726 or go online to www.minthillchamberofcommerce.com.


Denver Days

When: Sept. 29-Oct. 2. Wed. and Thurs., 4-10pm; Fri., 4-11pm; and Sat., 10am-11pm

Where: Triangle Circle, off of NC Highway 16, Denver

Cost: Free admission; $10 parking fee

Reel in a thrill with rides and a midway provided by Cole Amusements. The excitement continues all weekend with concerts by local talents, and craft and food vendors. Proceeds from the festival contribute to the purchase of public land for a permanent park for the Denver community. For more information, go online to www.denvernc.com/denverdays.htm.


Can’t Miss Fall Fairs

Iredell County Fair

When: Sept. 6-11; Mon.-Fri., 5-11pm

Where: Iredell County Fairgrounds, 630 N. Main St., Troutman

Cost: Adults $5; Free for ages 6 and under; Students $1 Mon.-Wed

Enjoyment for the whole family with live entertainment, children’s activities, a petting farm, music, food and commercial vendors, livestock competitions and agricultural exhibits.

For more information, call 704-799-4475 or go online to www.eventcrazy.com.


Cabarrus County Agricultural Fair

When: Sept. 10-18; Weekdays, 4-11pm; Sat., 1-11pm; Sun., 1-10pm

Where: Cabarrus Arena and Events Center, Highway 49, Concord

Cost: $3-$7; Free for ages 5 and under

Enjoy amusement rides, live music and other entertainment, including an illusionist, a variety of vendors, and contests.

For more information, call 704-920-3976 or go online to www.cabarruscountyfair.com.


Dixie Classic Fair

When: Oct. 1-10; Sun.-Fri., 11am-11pm.; Sat., 9am-11pm

Where: Dixie Classic Fairgrounds, 421 27th St. NW, Winston Salem

Cost: Adults $8; Ages 6-11, $4; Free for ages 5 and under

Don’t miss 10 days of amusement rides and entertainment, including magic shows and candle making, contests, cotton candy and funnel cakes at the second largest fair in North Carolina.

For more information, call 336-727-2236 or go online to www.dcfair.org.


North Carolina State Fair

When: Oct. 14-24; Oct. 14, 3pm-midnight; Oct. 15-24, 8am-midnight.

Where: N.C. State Fairgrounds, 1025 Blue Ridge Road, Raleigh

Cost: Adults, $8; Ages 6-12, $3; Free for ages 5 and under

Relish games, rides, live bands, a children’s fun park, folk-festival competitions and nightly fireworks.

For more information, call 919-821-7400 or go online to www.ncstatefair.org.