Fall is one of the most delightful seasons in St. Louis – when the air gets crisp, the sweaters come out and the leaves turn into jewel box colors. It's also a great time to celebrate at a number of seasonal festivals throughout the area. Here are our picks for the best family-friendly fall festivals.
1. Fall Farm Festival at The Magic House
Families are invited to a fun-filled day on the "farm" at The Magic House’s Fall Farm Festival, where kids can meet with local farmers to learn about where their food comes from, explore a real tractor, engage in a variety of agricultural activities and get up close and personal with live farm animals, thanks to support from the Missouri and Illinois Farm Bureaus. The event is included with regular museum admission.
Fall Farm Festival takes place on September 9 from 9:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. at The Magic House, located at 516 S. Kirkwood Road in Kirkwood. For more info, visit magichouse.org.
2. Celebrate St. Peters
This festival has a bit of everything, including free live music by national acts Ambrosia, Pablo Cruise, Firefall and Orleans; carnival rides; food and craft vendors and more. The Community News Family Area offers free kids entertainment, carnival games, inflatables, the Home Depot Kids' workshop, and an interactive experience from BJC St. Charles County with activities focused on health and wellness. Carnival ride wristbands or single tickets can be purchased at the event.
Celebrate St. Peters takes place September 15 and 16 at 370 Lakeside Park, located at 1000 Lakeside Park Drive in St. Peters. For more info, visit stpetersmo.net.
3. Kirkwood Greentree Festival
Since 1960, this community festival has been a favorite of families in Kirkwood and from across the St. Louis region. Held in beautiful Kirkwood Park and free to the public, the fun kicks off Friday night with the Kids' Dog Show and Skyhoundz Canine Frisbee Contest. Kids' Day both Saturday and Sunday includes inflatable fun, carnival-style games and live performances by kid-friendly entertainers, as well as arts and craft booths, food booths, Folklife artisans and re-enactors, a book fair and more. Saturday's fun kicks off throughout the streets of downtown Kirkwood with the annual Greentree Festival Parade.
Kirkwood Greentree Festival takes place September 15-17 at Kirkwood Park, located at Geyer Road and Adams Avenue in Kirkwood. Hours vary by day. For more info, visit kirkwoodmo.org.
4. Faust Heritage Festival
The Historic Village at Faust Park is the setting for this fun festival including live music, food, crafts, games, pony rides, hayrides, and historical activities and demonstrations such as rope making, cornhusk dolls, blacksmithing and more. Guests can also tour the usually locked historic homes on site. The cost is $5 for adults (13+), $2 for children ages 4-12 and free for children 3 and under.
Faust Heritage Festival takes place September 16 and 17 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. at Faust Park, located at 15185 Olive Blvd. in Chesterfield. For more info, visit stlouisco.com.
5. St. Louis Renaissance Festival
Take a trip back in time at the 19th annual St. Louis Renaissance Festival. Enjoy family-friendly fun, food and entertainment ranging from pirates to jousting to juggling to giant turkey legs, and more. Be sure to check out the new 2017 features, including Magic the Live Unicorn, Giant Royal Puppets, Jester's Juggling School and Mermaid Cove. Enjoy other favorite family games and activities including Fairy Wing Forest, Kid's Quest, a climbing wall, archery, Jacob's Ladder, henna tattoos and a reptile exhibit, among others. Live entertainment, Faire food and an artisan marketplace complete the experience.
St. Louis Renaissance Festival takes place on Saturdays and Sundays September 16 through October 15 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Rotary Park, located at 2577 West Meyer Road in Wentzville. For more info, visit stlrenfest.com.
6. Saint Charles Oktoberfest
In beautiful Frontier Park overlooking the Missouri River, this family-friendly German Heritage festival includes live entertainment, German food and vendors, crafts and a children's area including pumpkin painting, face painting, puppeteers, magicians, clowns, inflatables and other fun activities. The "Wiener Dog Derby" is another fun addition to the festival. The Glockenspiel live cuckoo clock performers from Milwaukee offer a show that has become a must see at Oktoberfest.
Saint Charles Oktoberfest takes place September 22-24 at Frontier Park, located off Riverside Drive in downtown Saint Charles between the Missouri River and the Historic Downtown District. Times vary by day. For more info, visit saintcharlesoktoberfest.com
7. Best of Missouri Market
This is one of the most well-attended events each year at the Missouri Botanical Garden and offers something for everyone in the family with over 120 regional food producers and crafters offering fresh produce, baked goods, fresh and dried flowers, herbs, handcrafted items, baskets, wooden toys, custom jewelry and live music. The Kids Corner features cow milking, pumpkin decorating and barnyard animals. Admission is $15 for adults (13 & over), $7 for Garden members, $7 for children ages 3-12 and free for Garden members' children ages 3-12.
Best of Missouri Market takes place October 6-8 at the Missouri Botanical Garden located at 4344 Shaw Blvd. in St. Louis. Hours vary by day. For more info, visit missouribotanicalgarden.org.
8. Florissant Old Town Fall Festival
This one-day community festival, now in its 20th year, features 11 blocks of fun including a chili cook-off, live entertainment on each block, Fido Follies dog show, a craft fair, flea market, food booths and more. Kids activities include pumpkin decorating, face painting, pony rides, hands-on art projects, puppets, a juggler/stilt walker and a chalk wall. The festival will also include a Children’s Art Festival on the City Hall lawn.
Florissnt Old Town Fall Festival takes place on October 8 from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Rue St. Francois in Old Town Florissant. For more info, visit florissantoldtown.com.
9. Harvest Festival at Laumeier Sculpture Park
Sponsored by Sauce Magazine, the 2017 Harvest Festival celebrates the best Autumn has to offer with delicious fall foods from St. Louis' top restaurants, a farmer's market featuring fresh local produce, locally made arts and crafts, family and kids' activities, live music and all of the season's splendor in Laumeier Sculpture Park's beautiful outdoor setting. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for Laumeier members, and free for children ages 10 and under. Tickets can be purchased at the entrance or online.
Harvest Festival takes place on October 15 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Laumeier Sculpture Park, located at 12580 Rott Road in Sunset Hills. For more info and tickets, visit laumeier.org.
10. Wolf Fest at Endangered Wolf Center
Go into the wild for a day of family fun at Wolf Fest at the Endangered Wolf Center. The event features live music, food trucks, local artists, a kid's area, bounce house, rock climbing, Canines in the Clouds dog show and more. Spend the day surrounded by nature enjoying once-in-a-lifetime encounters with exotic animals from around the world and, of course, get a chance to be up close and personal with the wolves that call the center home. Tickets are $25/carload in advance or $35/carload at the door and all proceeds benefit the work, vision and mission of the Endangered Wolf Center.
Wolf Fest takes place on October 21 from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. at the Endangered Wolf Center, located at 6750 Tyson Valley Road in Eureka. For more info, visit endangeredwolfcenter.org.
Amy Burger is a mom, freelance writer and communications professional with nearly 20 years experience working in St. Louis. Her work has appeared in numerous publications and media outlets including STL Parent, Missouri Life magazine, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Town & Style and kdhx.org, among others. When she's not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two beautiful girls at home in Kirkwood.