Hot Air Balloons at Callaway Resort & Gardens

Hot Air Balloon Glow on Labor Day Weekend at Callaway Resort & Gardens

Events are Back in Georgia and Better Than Ever

Be there this summer and fall when bands return to the stage, artists share new work, and festivals unveil fun surprises!

After a year when events vanished from the calendar, communities throughout Georgia are bringing back annual favorites that celebrate music, art, food and much more. From hot air balloons to grilled cheese, yellow daisies to moonshine, these 15 summer and fall events are sure to delight fans with new formats and features while retaining the fun everyone loves.

Band at Bragg Jam in Macon, Georgia

Bragg On in Macon, July 31

The roots of American music run deep in Macon. Experience a taste of the city's soulful vibe at the free community concert Bragg On the last Saturday in July. It's a smaller scale than the city's longtime favorite Bragg Jam Concert Crawl that showcases bands at venues throughout the city, but this year's outdoor event promises to be music to your ears.

Learn More About Bragg On

Hot air balloons at Callaway Resort & Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia

Hot Air Balloon Glow at Callaway Resort & Gardens, Sept. 3-5

Labor Day Weekend at Callaway Resort & Gardens features a number of hot air balloons that light up for a spectacular balloon glow at night followed by fireworks over Robin Lake Beach. Enjoy a weekend full of swimming at the beach, seeing butterflies and birds of prey take flight, and all the resort amenities along with three nights of balloon glows.

See the Hot Air Balloons

Women browsing art at the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park

Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park, Sept. 9-12

A highlight of Georgia's festival calendar every September, the Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park is one event that arts and crafts fans absolutely can’t miss. Expansive festival grounds welcome visitors to browse and purchase work by hundreds of artists over the four-day event.

Learn more in this Guide to the Yellow Daisy Festival.

Attend the Yellow Daisy Festival

Beer in Helen during Oktoberfest. Photo by @floridadonny

Oktoberfest in Helen, Weekends in September & Daily Sept. 30-Nov. 7

Photo by @floridadonny

Get out your lederhosen and dirndls and get ready to dance to the polka in Helen this fall. Alpine Helen's Oktoberfest celebrations have been going on for 50 years, involving multiple weeks of traditional dancing, food, and of course, beer from September to November.

Learn more in this Guide to Helen Oktoberfest.

Experience Oktoberfest

Atlanta Grilled Cheese Festival

Atlanta Grilled Cheese Festival, Sept. 11

Join fellow cheese lovers at the Atlanta Grilled Cheese Festival, and indulge in an afternoon of melty, cheesy goodness served by restaurants from all over the city. While tasting samples, listen to live music, play games, and relax with a beer or cocktail in the Bloody Mary Garden. Vote for your favorite grilled cheese creation, and see who will be crowned "Best Grilled Cheese" in Atlanta!

Get tickets to Atlanta Grilled Cheese Festival

Art in Augusta. Photo by RedWolf

ArtsCity Festival in Augusta, Sept. 17-19

The annual Arts in the Heart of Augusta Festival is being modified this year and will be the ArtsCity Festival instead. Browse work at more than 100 juried artist booths, and enjoy live music and entertainment on two stages. Dine on cuisine from around the world at international food booths, as well as take-out from downtown restaurants. The two-and-a-half-day celebration won't be as large as it has been previously, but it will have all the elements that have made it a beloved festival for years.

ATTEND ARTSCITY FESTIVAL

Music Midtown in Atlanta. Photo by @roshanagmar

Music Midtown in Atlanta, Sept. 18-19

Photo by @roshanagmar

As one of the state's largest music fests, Music Midtown draws fans to Atlanta every September. The long list of acts in the weekend lineup covers many musical genres and features some of the industry’s biggest names. The fest, held outdoors in Piedmont Park in September, has seen acts by the likes of Ludacris, Jane's Addiction, Pearl Jam, Artic Monkeys, Red Hot Chili Peppers and T.I.

GET TICKETS TO MUSIC MIDTOWN

Backstage at the Blind Willie McTell Music Festival in Thomson, Georgia

Blind Willie McTell Music Festival in Thomson, Sept. 21

Head to Thomson for this year's music festival named for native Blind Willie McTell, an influential blues guitarist and singer. Experience performances by the North Mississippi Allstars, Son Volt, Joachim Cooder (son of famed guitarist Ry Cooder), Todd Allbright, and Blair Crimmins and the Hookers.

Find more events and things to do on your trip with this Guide to Thomson.

Get Tickets to Blind Willie McTell Music Festival

Ranky Tanky to headline Savannah Jazz Festival

Savannah Jazz Festival, Sept. 21-26

The Coastal Jazz Association was formed in 1981 as a way to ensure that jazz would continue to thrive here. Several years later, their efforts birthed the Savannah Jazz Festival, going strong for 40 years now – each September brings a much-anticipated week of performances across the city.

See the 2021 Savannah Jazz Festival Lineup

Band performing at AthFest in Athens, Georgia

AthFest in Athens, Sept. 24-26

Athfest Arts and Music Festival is one of Athens’ iconic annual music festivals that features local and regional musicians and artists. Touring musicians flock to Athens for its festivals, and many visit to pay homage to their heroes — whether that’s R.E.M., Widespread Panic, The Drive-by Truckers, Pylon, of Montreal, Vic Chesnutt, Neutral Milk Hotel or another one of the town's influential exports. Come see where musical history was made and then be inspired to create your own.

Plan your trip with this Guide to Athens.

Experience AthFest

Georgia National Fair in Perry, Georgia

Georgia National Fair in Perry, Oct. 7-17

For 11 days each autumn, The Georgia National Fair brings rides, concerts, agricultural exhibits and competitions, food stands, arts and crafts, and horse shows to the Georgia National Fairgrounds & Agricenter in Perry. The best part? Fireworks each night!

Don't Miss the Georgia National Fair

Gold Rush Days parade in Dahlonega, Georgia

Gold Rush Days Festival in Dahlonega, Oct. 16-17

Dahlonega’s Town Square is taken over each October by Gold Rush Days festival-goers ready to enjoy a parade, children's activities, a fashion show, gold panning contest, wheelbarrow race, King and Queen coronation, hog calling, buck dancing contest, live musical entertainment, wrist wrestling, and delicious food. Free to attend.

ATTEND GOLD RUSH DAYS

Mountain Moonshine Festival in Dawsonville, Georgia

Mountain Moonshine Festival in Dawsonville, Oct. 22-24

The annual Mountain Moonshine Festival and Car Show in Dawsonville celebrates the town's longstanding embrace of the alcoholic spirit. The late October festival fills the downtown area with family-friendly activities and displays.

While you're in town, if you're a fan of "Awesome Bill From Dawsonville" (aka NASCAR champion Bill Elliott), you won't want to miss trying his branded spirits in his hometown. Tour the Dawsonville Distillery to get a taste of handcrafted, small batch moonshine and whiskey. Stop by the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame to learn more about NASCAR's roots and how moonshine was a part of the start of the popular racing series.

Get a Taste of Mountain Moonshine

Band performing at Deep Roots Festival in Milledgeville, Georgia

Deep Roots Festival in Milledgeville, Oct. 23

Explore historic downtown Milledgeville at the Deep Roots Festival in October. Live music ranges from bluegrass to rock and roll, an antique car show features rare automobiles, and the artist market and kids activities keep the whole family entertained. Oh yes, and there is a barbecue cook-off, too. What could be better?

ATTEND DEEP ROOTS FESTIVAL

Savannah Pride Festival

Savannah Pride, Oct. 28-30

In Savannah, Halloween belongs to Pride! Start the party with Masqueerade on Thursday, Oct. 28, when the streets will be filled with people in costume and drag. Then, join the Savannah Pride Parade Friday, Oct. 29 as it winds through downtown Savannah to the Savannah Pride Festival in Ellis Square. You’ll find music, performances, food and drinks, and more at the festival Friday, Oct. 29 and Saturday, Oct. 30.

Celebrate Pride in Savannah

Published: June 2021