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It may be the dog days of summer now, but don’t blink! The busy fall season is right around the corner.
As always, as the weather begins to cool and the students come back to town for the fall session at the University of Arkansas, that’s when lots of locals plan their music festivals, races, food festivals, and fall events in Northwest Arkansas.
Here’s a rundown of some of the bigger events that we know about coming up in late summer and fall so you can get them on your calendar. Feel free to let us know what we missed in the comments!
Date: July 26-28
Location: Rogers, Arkansas
Description: This 3-day cycling festival includes events for all ages and skill levels.
Scheduled events include a family glow ride, a kids mountain bike race, a 2-mile poker ride, a 4-hour endurance mountain bike race, a gravel ride, and USA Cycling-sanctioned amateur time trials, a criterium and a road race.
For more information about this year’s event, visit rogerscyclingfestival.com.
Date: Aug. 6-10
Location: Tontitown, Arkansas
Description: The 121st annual Tontitown Grape Festival is coming up Aug. 6-10 this year.
The event includes a carnival, arts & crafts, music, food, drinks, and more!
For more information about this year’s event, visit tontitowngrapefestival.com.
Date: Aug. 11
Location: Kessler Mountain Regional Park
Description: Fayetteville Parks & Recreation will host the Kessler Mountain Jam, a cross country race that is part of the Arkansas Mountain Bike Championship Series (AMBCS) in the heat of the summer at Kessler Mountain.
In addition to the bike races, the event will include plenty of food, music and beer as well.
For a bit more info, visit fayetteville-ar.gov.
Kessler Mountain Jam / Courtesy
Date: Aug. 20-24
Location: Washington County Fairgrounds
Description: The annual Washington County Fair is set for Aug. 20-24 this year. This year’s event will include all the attractions locals have come to expect over the years, including the carnival, animal judging, music, pageants, petting zoo, bull riding and more.
More information about the fair, including a schedule, is available at mywashcofair.com.
Date: Aug. 21-25
Location: Various locations around Fayetteville and surrounding area
Description: What started as a small music festival in a restaurant parking lot has grown into much, much more. Fayetteville Roots Festival has expanded to become a multi-day, multi-venue, multi-city music, food, and folk culture festival that is now one of the signature events each fall in Fayetteville.
This year’s festival includes music by headliners like Hiss Golden Messenger, Mavis Staples, St. Paul & the Broken Bones, along with several chef dinners, songwriting workshops, art installations, and tons more.
The event will also include the new Roots Food and Spirits event featuring some of the biggest names in the culinary world.
Many of the events at the festival will sell out, but a full schedule of events, including ticket information is available at therootsfest.org.
Date: Aug. 24
Location: Drake Field, Fayetteville
Description: SOAR NWA is a new event offering a variety of hot air balloon activities (weather permitting), kids play area, beer garden, live music and various aeronautics activities.
Music headliners this year include Randall Shreve and the Devilles, Jenna and the Soul Shakers, and more.
The event is a fundraiser for Open Avenues, an organization that helps people with disabilities find employment in the area.
For more information, visit soarnwa.com.
Photo: Nicolas Raymond, C.C. 2.0
Date: Aug. 31-Sept. 2
Location: Battlefield Park, Prairie Grove
Description: The Clothesline Fair is an annual tradition in Prairie Grove. The event includes a craft fair on the grounds of the Battlefield Park. There’s also a square dance exhibition on Saturday. On Monday, Sept. 2, square dancers from high schools around the region will compete in the annual competition.
For more information, check out the Facebook page.
Date: Sept. 7
Location: Tri Cycle Farms
Description: The biggest fundraiser of the year for local nonprofit farm, Tri Cycle Farms, is a celebration of the delicious creation known as pesto.
The 8th annual Pesto Fest is coming up this fall and will include a pesto making competition judged by local celebrity chefs, live music, kids activities, and more.
The music lineup this year includes Tater, Mater, & Squarsh, Opal Agafia, Jamie Lou and The Hullabaloo, and Ashtyn Barbaree and the Barbarians. The event will take place from 4-10 p.m.
For a bit more information, check out the Facebook event.
Date: Sept. 7
Location: Bentonville Square to Fayetteville Square
Description: The semi-annual Square to Square bike ride and festival is set for Sept. 7 this year.
The Square 2 Square Bike Ride follows the Razorback Greenway, and in the fall, will begin on the Bentonville square and finish in downtown Fayetteville. It’s a 30-mile ride in all, though riders can choose to start anywhere along the trail system to participate. In addition to the ride, there are festive pit stops along the way, refreshments, and more.
A mini-festival will take place on the Fayetteville square at the finish line.
The ride is $25 for adults and $15 for kids. More information is available on the city of Fayetteville’s website.
Date: Sept. 10
Location: Botanical Garden of the Ozarks
Description: Chefs in the Garden is a fundraiser for Botanical Garden in the Ozarks featuring food created by a host of local chefs. Guests can stroll through the garden and sample from a diverse selection of sweet and savory culinary creations.
Ticket information will be released at a later date. Visit bgozarks.org for more info.
Date: Sept. 13-14
Location: Byrd’s Adventure Center
Description: A live music festival at Byrd’s Adventure Center.
This year’s lineup includes The Schwag Grateful Dead Experience, The Hindenburg Project Led Zeppelin Tribute, Lou Dog Sublime Tribute, and more.
Tickets range from $30 for a one night pass in advance to $75 for both nights at the gate.
For more information, check out the Facebook event.
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