6 of the Best Fall Festivals in Wisconsin to Check Out This Year

Fall creeps closer every day, which means it’s the perfect time to start looking at these fun fall festivals in Wisconsin.


Fall Festivals in Wisconsin

Perfect for the whole family or the romantic getaway, a festival can be just the right thing to kick off the fall season or to start a new tradition. So if you can’t wait for sweaters, pumpkins, apple cider and more, these festivals will be right up your alley. And even if fall isn’t your favorite season, these fall festivals in Wisconsin might be just the thing to change your mind!


1. Leif Erikson Day

Leif Erickson Day is a celebration right here in Westby in honor of Leif Erikson. Erikson was a Scandinavian and likely the first person to have “discovered” America, hundreds of years before Columbus. The date of the festival, October 9, honors the date the first organized immigration group from Norway landed on American soil. We celebrate with Scandinavian food and drink (fish dinners and Swedish pancakes), Nordic gifts (and books and hats and jewelry!), Viking movies and popcorn, and of course the arrival of the Viking ship.


2. Oktoberfest

In late September/early October, you won’t be able to tell if you’re in Munich or Wisconsin during La Crosse’s Oktoberfest, one of the most popular festivals of its kind in the nation. With parades, authentic German food and drink, carnival rides, and a wide range of entertainment options, this festival has definitely earned a spot on our “do not miss” list!


3. The La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival

For you bicycle lovers out there, The La Crosse Area Bicycle Festival is an opportunity to enjoy some of the fabulous views and scenery in the Driftless area! Each day there’s a 30-100 mile featured road ride, as well as mountain bike rides and historical tours. Some of the rides are shorter and guided, making this a great for families and easy riders as well!


4. The Gays Mills Apple Festival

Recently the center of one of our blogs, the late September Gays Mills Apple Festival is the epitome of fall fun. Enjoy the apple harvest by visiting several of the Gays Mills Orchards, and sample some of the delicious apple dishes (it’s hard to say “no” to apple cider doughnuts!). There’s also a parade, a kiddie carnival, and several short runs (a 2K, 5K, and ¼ mile Kid Run). And of course the flea market is a great place to start shopping for those unique and hard-to-find Christmas gifts!


5. The Warrens Cranberry Festival

The Warrens Cranberry Festival’s over 200 food venders, 800 arts and crafts vendors would be more than enough to entice and occupy any visitor. But there’s also music, a parade, the cranberry marsh tours, cranberry wines, pie-eating contests and more! In addition to stocking up on handmade gifts and treats, you can also get all the fresh cranberries you need for your holiday tables and Christmas trees. (And we featured them on our blog as well!)


6. The Driftless Area Art Festival

If you love good food, music, entertainment, and shopping, definitely check out the Driftless Area Art Festival. With prizes awarded in culinary arts, kid and teen art, performance art, and visual arts, there will be something everyone in your family can enjoy. (For more details, see our blog post dedicated to this festival!)


A Westby House Fall

All of these fun fall events (and many more) are located just a short drive from the Westby House Inn. Think of us as your fall “home base,” with plenty of opportunities to enjoy fall festivals in Wisconsin, fall outdoor activities, and the Wisconsin fall colors. We would love the opportunity to welcome you to our comfortable and luxurious rooms, as well as our delicious full gourmet breakfast. And for more information on events in our area, be sure to download our complimentary Vacation Guide. We’ll see you in the fall!