I think we can all just go ahead and admit that October is everyone’s favorite month. And with all the concerts, fall festivals, great food and Halloween fun on the (packed) schedule in Columbia SC, it’s no wonder why. Keep reading for our roundup of things to do below, then take a look through our calendar of events for even more that’s happening this month in the real Southern hot spot.
Let the Ghoul Times Roll
BOO! Halloween is back and there are plenty of chills and thrills to go around for the whole month. How can you carve jack-o-lanterns without going Pumpkin Picking at Clinton Sease Farm first? Pick out the perfect gourd and take a stab at the corn maze challenge while you’re at it. The terrors that await you at Deceased Farm, Hall of Horrors Haunted Attraction and Spirits Alive! will leave you breathless with fear. Your little ones will love the festive fun of Scarecrows in the Garden, Boo at the Zoo and Halloween Hoopla, while the adults will enjoy letting loose at Growl at the Moon. Settle in for a spooky show. Columbia City Ballet Presents “Dracula: Ballet with a Bite” will bewitch you and Trustus Theatre Presents “Evil Dead, The Musical” offers a cheeky take on the cult classic films. Happy haunting!
Music to Our Ears
With an October lineup this good, there’s no doubt that Columbia SC is a music city. Catch Brothers Osborne, Keith Sweat, Chris Young, TobyMac, Sabrina Carpenter and ZZ Top onstage at the South Carolina State Fair. Thomas Rhett, the Foo Fighters and The Weekend will be performing in front of thousands of fans at Colonial Life Arena, while Third Eye Blind, Jump, Little Children and Vista After 5 Featuring Corey Smith will be rocking out at Music Farm Columbia. The Rhythm on the River Concert Series is back for its fall edition! Bring some folding chairs, grab a beverage and enjoy some tunes in the open air and next to the open water. Bop along to all your favorite British beats at Pops: British Invasion at Harbison Theatre at Midlands Technical College.
Just go ahead and clone yourself now so you can make it to all of the incredible festivals and events happening around town this month. As if our concert lineup this month isn’t enough, music-lovers can also stop by JerryFest, the Congaree Bluegrass Festival, Jam Room Music Festival, Bluegrass, Bidding & BBQ and the Light It Up Night-Time Parade Featuring Lil’ Kim. Kick up your heels on Main Street for a night of food trucks, music and mingling at First Thursday on Main or a vibrant and joyous day spent at the 28th Annual Famously Hot SC Pride Festival. It’s just not October without the return of the South Carolina State Fair, so stock up on enough funnel cakes and prizes to hold you over ‘til next year. While there, don’t miss out on FOLKFabulous@TheFair, McKissick Museum’s annual festival that will draw on the traditions and spirit of Mardi Gras this year – laissez les bon temps rouler! You’re definitely not in Kansas anymore. Grab your ruby slippers and follow the yellow brick road to the South Carolina State Museum for Overnight in Oz and Auntie Em’s Fall Harvest Festival. Appreciate the beauty of nature (and the beauty of cooler temps) at Congaree SwampFest. Finally, there’s no limit to the imagination and creativity to be found at BrickUniverse LEGO Fan Convention and the Columbia Model Train Show.
Pack some pants with an elastic waistband because this month is stuffed with culinary events. Family-style dinners are the best way for strangers to quickly become friends. Sit down and share a feast at the October Harvest Dinner, Main Street Harvest Dinner, Gervais Street Bridge Dinner or Fall Harvest Dinner. Visit as many eateries as you can and take advantage of the special deals and discounts that come with Restaurant Week. Columbia’s brunch game just got taken to a whole ‘nother level with Brookland Brunch, happening each Sunday at the West Columbia Riverwalk. Start your morning with a riverside mimosa and then take to the water for a post-feast river adventure. Get your fill of chili at the 30th Annual Chili Cook-Off. Pick up some local produce from the City Roots Farmers Market or Soda City Market and make your own culinary masterpiece! Wash it all down with samples of regional brews at the 2017 Lexington Craft Beerfest.
Show Your Spirit
Join the sea of pink and a good cause at the Walk for Life and the Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon + 5K/10K Races for breast cancer awareness. Add some garnet and black (or cardinal or gold if you’re into those kinds of things) into the mix as the South Carolina Gamecocks face off against the Arizona Razorbacks and Vanderbilt Commodores this month at Williams-Brice Stadium.
Check it Out
Take some time to pop into the Columbia Museum of Art this month for their latest exhibit, Henri Matisse: Jazz & Poetry on Paper. If you prefer your art in the form of fashion, check out Well Suited: The Costumes of Alonso V. Ailson for HBO’s Treme. History buffs will love South Carolina and the Great War or a tour of the South Carolina State House. Get the best of both art and history with Columbia SC 63 Presents: "Double Take: Artistic Interpretations of Columbia's Civil Rights History" at Tapp's Arts Center.