Small Town Festivals

Last Updated on May 26, 2014 by Jody Halsted

With all the traveling we do to destinations far and wide it can be easy for us to forget the great fun that can be found locally. Because fall brings the return of school, sports and semi-hibernation this is a great time to look around your area to find small town festivals.

The best thing about small town festivals- at least in the kids eyes- is the parade. Not only are the parades filled with fun characters you won’t usually find in larger parades…

Dexter parade collage

There is usually a lot of candy being thrown!

2008-08-23 Dexter Fall Festival 015 2008-08-23 Dexter Fall Festival 031

The last fall festival we attended (in Dexter, Iowa, population 689 at the last census) had a kiddie parade, cow chip tossing (this may be an Iowa thing…), pedal tractor pulls, a community BBQ, a community movie in the park, a street dance… and more that we didn’t get to.

Dexter Fall Festival Fun Collage

Small festivals have a wonderful way of making you slow down, relax and just enjoy where you live.

The best way to find these little gems is to check your state’s tourism website. I just type in the state name and “tourism”. Or use this website and pick your state. Most pages either have an events calendar on the home page or an events tab to take you to the calendar. Using my state’s website I’ve found corn mazes, Renaissance festivals, Fall festivals, Corn Carnivals and other great goings on that I had no idea existed.

I’ve also found that typing the state’s name followed by “festivals” or “events” and a date range will yield some results. This is hit or miss as many of these gatherings may be too small to have a website.

So the next time you think “There’s nothing to do around here” try searching your state. I bet you’ll find something you’ve never done before in a place you thought you knew.

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