Celebrate fall with corn mazes, pumpkin patches, beer festivals and more
Dust off your lederhosen and head to Lake Eola Park for chicken dance-offs, stein-hoisting competitions, pretzel-eating contests and Bavarian music. 431 E. Central Blvd., worldofbeer.com, free, menu prices vary.
Unlimited tastings of 80 beers from more than 35 different breweries, plus burgers, tacos and waffles. 5-8 p.m. Saturday, 143 E. Main St., Tavares, orlandoweeklytickets.com, $40-$45.
Redlight Redlight Oktoberfest
Dress in your most festive lederhosen and dirndl (not just your everyday lederhosen and dirndl), bring your favorite beer mug, and dance the afternoon away. 2810 Corrine Drive, facebook.com/redlightredlight, free, menu prices vary.
Fall in the Field Show
Annual vintage market with an amazing array of antiques and primitive art. Renninger's Twin Markets, 20651 U.S. Highway 441, Mount Dora, renningers.net, free.
Avalon Park Beer Garden Preview and Oktoberfest
Saturday from 5 to 10 p.m., celebrate fall with a family-fun event offering a beer garden, community performances and a free bounce park; grown-ups can preview the beer garden Friday night. 3651 E. Avalon Park Blvd., avalonparkorlando.com, free.
Hollerbach's Sanford Oktoberfest
A German street party in downtown Sanford with real imported German beer, polka music, folk costumes, dancing and — new in 2021 — their first beard competition. Sanford Civic Center, 401 E. Seminole Blvd., hollerbachs.com/oktoberfest, Sanford, $30-$90.
The Ravenous Pig breaks in their spacious beer garden with a German celebration, serving a German-style roast menu, their own brewery's seasonal Oktoberfest lager, a live DJ, a liter-stein hoisting competition and more. Noon-5 p.m., Ravenous Pig, 565 W. Fairbanks Ave., Winter Park, facebook.com/theravenouspigbrewingco, free, menu prices vary.
Winter Park Autumn Art Festival
Nearly 200 artists from around Florida will present their wares at this juried outdoor art festival. Central Park, North Park Avenue and West Morse Boulevard, Winter Park, winterpark.org/autumn-art-festival, free.
Pig on the Pond Festival
South Lake's biggest annual event features live music, barbecue, a carnival, a chili cook-off and a Junior Grillmasters competition presented by Publix. Waterfront Park, 100 Third St., Clermont, pigonthepond.org, free.
Friday features traditional music, dancing, hayrides and yodeling, while Saturday is "Rocktoberfest," with Cat Ridgeway & the Tourists. In Celebration's signature move of scoffing at Mother Nature, there will be falling leaves scheduled at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. Celebration Town Center, 610 Sycamore St., celebrationtowncenter.com, free parking and admission.
Central Florida VegFest
One of the largest and longest-running vegetarian and vegan festivals in the world, the Central Florida Veg Fest returns to roomy Festival Park this fall with dozens of cruelty-free bites alongside a full slate of family-friendly activities. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, Orlando Festival Park, 2911 E. Robinson Street, cfvegfest.org, free.
All-day charity music festival to raise funds for a local breast cancer charity — 100 percent of ticket sales are donated to charity. This year features tribute bands of John Cougar Mellencamp, Guns N' Roses, P!nk, Depeche Mode, the Monkees and the Cars. Noon Saturday, Cypress Cove Nudist Resort, 4425 Pleasant Hill Road, Kissimmee, cypresscoveresort.com, $30-$55.
Mount Dora Craft Fair
The downtown streets come alive with shoppers visiting displays from more than 400 craft exhibitors. Sunset Park, 230 W. Fourth Ave., Mount Dora, mtdoracraftfair.com, free.
Oct. 23 and 30
Orlando German Club Oktoberfest
The Orlando German Club (fka the German American Society) hosts its huge annual Oktoberfest twice this October. Head to Casselberry for oom-pah music, German beer and more schnitzel than you can shake a stein at. Noon to 10 p.m., Orlando German Club, 381 Orange Lane, Casselberry, orlandogermanclub.com, $5.
Calle Orange Festival
Three stages, more than 40 artists, showcasing the diversity of the Hispanic community. Vendors line the streets with everything from hot dogs to pinchos. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday, 425 N. Orange Ave., downtown Orlando, calleorange.com, $18.
Taste of Orlando
The 21st annual iteration of this family food festival featuring the delectable tastes of Waterford Lakes. A combo wristband available on the day of the event gets you unlimited beer samples from Bowigens Beer Co. during the fest, but only 250 will be sold. 3-7 p.m. Saturday, Waterford Lakes Town Center, 413 N. Alafaya Trail, eventbrite.com, $5-$30.
Fall Fiesta in the Park
This biannual block party brings vendors, entertainment, food and more to downtown's fave park. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, Lake Eola Park, 512 E. Washington St., fiestainthepark.com, free.
Art Under the Stars
The Maitland Rotary Art Festival has been entertaining Central Florida residents and visitors since 1976. Lake Lily Park, 701 Lake Lily Drive, Maitland, maitlandrotaryartfestival.org,
Cows 'N Cabs
This country-themed fall festival features mini-dish tastings from 25 gourmet restaurants, paired with more than 200 wines, craft beers and cocktails. VIP ticketholders get entry an hour early and access to a reserved seating area. This year's event benefits the After-School All-Stars and the 4Roots Farm. 7-10 p.m. Saturday, Central Park West Meadow, Winter Park, cowsncabs.com, $140-$240.
Orlando Beer Fest
True, you can enjoy unlimited samples from Florida breweries. But if you're only coming to Orlando Beer Fest for the beer, you're missing out on half the fun. After a few (dozen) samples, you'll be ready to hit up the food truck pod, where there's something for every taste. Autumn Saturdays, of course, mean college football, and we won't leave sports fans stranded: There'll be a big inflatable screen showing the day's matchups. VIP guests get to enter at noon, two hours ahead of general admission, but we suggest getting there early even if you have a GA ticket; the line wraps around the corner every year. That's just what happens when you host the best beer fest in town. 2-5 p.m. Saturday, Orlando Festival Park, 2911 Robinson St., orlandobeerfestival.com, $40-$80
Atwood Family Farms Fall Festival & Pumpkin Destruction
36111 N. County Road 44A, Eustis, 352-973-1963,
This festival features a tractor-pulled "cow train," a 16-foot-square spiderweb (!), and a sunflower maze, as well as U-pick pumpkin and sunflower patches. A rotating schedule of food trucks and live bands rounds out the fun. But the main event is Pumpkin Destruction Day, Nov. 6: Smash your gourds with mallets or drop pumpkins from a cherry-picker lift. Admission is $12.95 on weekdays, $14.95 on weekends.
Corn Maze Orlando
15239 Lake Pickett Road, 407-929-0970, cornmazeorlando.com
The corn maze and pumpkin patch opens on Oct. 2 with hours from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This year, they are offering a dark maze option, running the maze until 10 p.m. on weekends. Prices for the maze and park range from $10 to $15, depending on age.
Fall on the Farm
Whisper Creek Farm at Grande Lakes Orlando, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, grandelakes.com
Swanky autumn-centric activities at the resort's 18,000-square-foot farm include pumpkin-picking, -carving and-painting with an Olympic World Champion culinary artist, a hayride, farmers market and fall photo sessions. Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. throughout the month of October; reservations are required. Tickets are $60 or $40 for overnight resort guests.
Fox Squirrel Corn Maze
3002 N. Charlie Taylor Road, Plant City, 813-756-8918, futchentertainment.com
The 10th annual Fox Squirrel Corn Maze is open Oct. 9-24, weekends only, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You'll enjoy duck races, cornhole, steer roping, and the always-popular "lots of cows to see!" — all accompanied by a live bluegrass band. There are autumnal treats like peanut brittle and spiced cakes available, as well as more Florida-appropriate shaved ice and boiled peanuts. Adults, $11; kids, $10, babies/toddlers under 2, free.
Harvest Fields Corn Maze
3000 N. Spring Garden Ave., DeLand, 386-801-1810, harvestfieldscornmaze.com
Now in its fifth year, DeLand's Harvest Fields offers hayrides and hay forts in addition to its titular corn maze. The maze at Harvest Fields opens up on Oct. 9 and runs through Halloween. At night, the area turns into a haunted hayride.
950 Tavares Road, Polk City, 352-895-8687, harvestholler.com
Harvest Holler doesn't skimp on the attractions, from their centerpiece corn maze to tadpole fishing and massive slides. There's even putt-putt! The sprawling farm attraction is open now until Nov. 14, running every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Be sure to sample their ever-popular pumpkin pies. Tickets are $15 per adult and $12 for kids over 2.
HarvestMoon Fun Farm
15990 Stur St., Masaryktown, 800-373-4811, harvestmoonfl.com
We don't mean to start any fights, but HarvestMoon may have the coolest corn maze in all of Central Florida. The maze is open every day but Monday in October and just on the first Saturday and Sunday of November. They also run a haunted night maze on select nights in October. Admission starts at $13.95.
Lake Catherine Farms
5849 Lake Catherine Road, Groveland, 352-551-4110, lakecatherineblueberries.com
Lake Catherine has a choose-your-own-adventure feel. In addition to a pumpkin patch and regular live music, the farm hosts three separate fall maze events. The "not scary" family maze costs $6, the haunted maze $11 and the "Dark Forest Trail of Terror" costs $16.
Long & Scott Farms
26216 County Road 448A, Mount Dora, 352-383-6900, longandscottfarms.com
Long & Scott Farms believe in going big: The Mount Dora farm's maze spreads over nearly 7 acres. The fun begins on Oct. 1 and runs well into December, opening every Saturday and Sunday. On select nights, they open the maze up after dark for a bit of spooky fun.
Partin Ranch Corn Maze
5601 N. Canoe Creek Road, Kenansville, 407-709-7250, partinranchcornmaze.com
Partin Ranch's corn maze runs every Saturday and Sunday from Oct. 9 to Nov. 7. They offer multiple mazes, craft vendors and a kiddie zip line.
The Pickin' Patch
11000 Rolling Hills Road, Dunnellon, 352-533-4344, dunnellonpumpkinpatch.com
The Pickin' Patch has been named the state's best pumpkin patch by Better Homes and Gardens several times over and it's easy to see why. This patch lets you pull pumpkins directly out of the field, plus there's a corn maze, hay maze and live bluegrass music. The patch opens Oct. 2 and closes Oct. 25, running every Friday, Saturday and Sunday in between. Admission is $5 per person and children under 3 get in free.
3831 NW 156th Ave., Gainesville, 386-462-2406, rogersfarmfl.com
Roger's Farm Fall Festival goes well beyond pumpkin patches and corn mazes. Though both of those are on offer, the Gainesville attraction offers spooky trails, pumpkin chunkin' and human hamster wheels, among other attractions. Admission to the event, which starts on Saturday, Oct. 2, and runs every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, is $10.
Santa's Christmas Tree Forest
35317 Huff Road, Eustis, 352-357-9863, santaschristmastreeforest.com
Santa's Christmas Tree Forest has diversified, offering a pumpkin patch and fall fest for the month of October. Tickets are $13 for the fest that runs every Friday-Sunday in October.
Showcase of Citrus Pumpkin Ponderosa
5010 U.S. Highway 27, Clermont, 407-394-4377, showcaseofcitrus.com
Showcase of Citrus will not miss a sale. The Pumpkin Ponderosa is on now and runs through November with hayrides, arts & crafts and games.
Southern Hill Farms Fall Festival
16651 Schofield Road, Clermont, 407-986-5806, southernhillfarms.com
Clermont's Southern Hill Farms plays no games when it comes to fall. Their festival has just about everything you can think of, from apple cider donuts to booze. Pumpkin patches and fields of flowers are complemented by corn mazes and fair rides. Tickets are $20 and the fest runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. during the week. n