Southwestern Ohio has the most food festivals, per capita, than other areas in the state. Some of the more famous festivals in this region are the Taste of Cincinnati and the Gold Star Chili Fest. This fall, take a trip off the well beaten path to venture out to some of the smaller cities and villages around southwest Ohio. A wide variety of festivals occur throughout the region. We celebrate the love for sauerkraut, potatoes, apples, and pork, just to name a few.
Most festivals around the area are free of charge. They are a good way to take a bite out of Ohio.
Plan a trip to Preble County, Ohio this year to visit one of their popular festivals. The third full weekend in September is the Preble County Pork Festival in Eaton, Ohio. Go hog wild at the all you can eat smorgasbord for only $10 for an adult or $5 for children five to twelve years of age. This terrific event includes a parade, numerous vendors, and even racing pigs.
Visit Eaton to get your fill of everything from ham to pork chops. Do your holiday shopping early while perusing the various craft vendors’ tents and booths.
The following Friday through Sunday, travel to New Paris, Ohio just a few short miles northwest of Eaton. The New Paris Chamber of Commerce sponsors Apple fest. This is an action filled festival occurring annually. Family fun is encouraged here with free movies at night. The residents and visitors to New Paris will enjoy carnival rides and plenty of delicious food, again this year. Contests are held throughout the event for the whole family. To name a few, there is a Corn hole contest and Paintball. Bring the kids with you to visit the Kid’s Corner. There is plenty to do in New Paris.
In October, during the third full weekend, the little village of Camden is transformed into the busy Black Walnut Festival. Each year, Camden has nearly 40,000 people attending this event.
The festival has a Saturday morning parade. An entertainment tent is also part of the fun. Children ages three through eight can enjoy the kiddie tractor pedal pull competition.
Approximately 130 vendors are lined up around downtown Camden. This makes the Black Walnut Festival quite the shopping experience. Handmade crafts, and of course, loads of black walnut goodies are available for sale all weekend long.
If you need more information about the Black Walnut Festival, call (937) 452-7547.
Harveysburg, Ohio is host to the Renaissance Festival. Harveysburg is near Waynesville and Xenia. The festival runs from Labor Day weekend clear through October. Each Saturday and Sunday, plus Labor Day, the festival is open from 10:30 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. This event is fun and educational. The entertainers wear costumes related to the era, throughout the thirty acre complex, reenacting an English village during the medieval days.
You and your family will have a royal feast with all the delicious breads, stews, and more. Tempt your taste buds with steak on a stake or a plump and juicy turkey leg.
Check out the festival online at:
Each weekend is something new and different at the Renaissance Festival. Kid’s Weekend, Dog Days of Summer celebration, and Romance Weekend are just a few examples. Take a look online at the schedule of events.
In the mood for sauerkraut? Visit Waynesville, Ohio the second full weekend in October to experience the excitement of the Sauerkraut Festival. Volunteers work all year long to make this event a true success.
A sauerkraut recipe contest is being held prior to the festival at Der Dutchman Restaurant. For more details about the festival or contest, contact the Waynesville Chamber of Commerce. They can be reached by calling (513) 897-8855, or
You may want to try a sauerkraut cookie or brownie this year. And if ‘kraut is not for you, then come sample some of the festival’s other delicious treats.
Near Waynesville is Spring Valley, home of the Spring Valley Potato Festival. This event is held annually in early October. Come enjoy potatoes any way you can imagine. The festival features potato pancakes, sweet potato fries, and of course, potato soup.
The festival takes place on the main road of the village. The visitors can cruise through Spring Valley and enjoy some of the small town excitement. Enjoy the bake sale this year. Let the kids play games while you munch on some potato candy.
While in the area, you can camp nearby at Spring Valley Frontier Campground. It is small enough to feel right at home, but large enough to have the amenities you prefer, such as a pool, picnic tables and fire rings, as well as, two playgrounds for the kids.
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Fall foliage, festivals, and fun, all found in southwestern Ohio. We salute these terrific tastes and fabulous festivals! Take a short drive and enjoy the festivities.