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Fall festivals

Welcome Fall with a great big local party

Oktoberfest events help warm us up as the temperatures start to fall. Courtesy photo

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Cozy sweaters, plump pumpkins, colorful leaves, hot cocoa and brisk breezes; what do all of these things have in common? They all signal the arrival of the fall season. There are so many terrific things about fall in the South Puget Sound, so why not celebrate them?

Our region boasts unique and fun fall festivals to kick off the season right. Here are some events that are totally autumn-party worthy, so get ready to mark those calendars!

The 10th Annual Oktoberfest Northwest

Let's see: great beer ‘n' brats, a little polka and yodeling, wiener dog races, a 5k run and kid-friendly zone (complete with a root beer garden) are some of the many authentic traditions with a Pacific Northwest twist that are happening at Oktoberfest Northwest. Enjoy the festivities and kick off fall for an entire weekend.

  • Oct. 9-11, Washington State Fair and Events Center, 110 9th Ave. SW, Puyallup. Admission prices and hours of operation vary. For details visit

Fall Garden Festival

Have a green thumb? Appreciate a beautiful garden? Then join Metro Parks Tacoma for its Fall Garden Festival at beautiful Point Defiance Park in Tacoma. There will be garden tours, special guest lecturers, educational activities and displays, vendors and a kid's activity area.

Orting Pumpkin Fest

Feast on delicious fall foods (especially of the pumpkin variety) at this community festival. Entertainment, car show, pumpkin display, kid's activities (including a little pumpkin parade), a miniature horse parade and so much more.

Tacoma Holiday Food and Gift Festival

This festival may not be exclusively fall oriented, yet when fall kicks off, well, we all know that the holidays are right around the corner. This robust festival runs for five days this fall and is considered the largest holiday show in the Pacific Northwest. Food, gifts, crafts, entertainment and cooking classes available each day.

  • Oct. 22-25, hours vary by day, Tacoma Dome, 2727 E. D St., Tacoma. Children 12 and under are free and adult admission is $14.50 which is good for all five days. The website,, will help with planning your visit.

PenMet Park's Scarecrow Festival

Come see the most elaborate and interesting scarecrows ever at the annual Scarecrow Festival in Gig Harbor. Local groups of scarecrow enthusiasts can compete for the best scarecrow design (entry form for the contest is on the event's website). Enjoy hay rides, hay mazes, farm animals, carnival games, food, a kid zone and live entertainment, too. Admission is free.

Fife Harvest Festival

This popular and longtime annual city fall festival in Fife offers up fun for the whole family. Enjoy art, crafts and food vendors, hay rides, a hay maze, live entertainment and a special kid's zone. Admission is free.

  • Oct. 3, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Dacca Park, 2820 54th Ave. E., Fife. For more details, visit their website at
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