Fall Events in Charleston

Autumn is right around the corner, bringing with it cooler temps (fingers crossed!) and pumpkin-spiced everything. For those of us living in the Lowcountry—or who plan to visit in the coming months—it’s also a season overflowing with family-friendly fun. Here, find our most-anticipated events of the fall.

Boone Hall Pumpkin Patch (October 1-31). You could swing by Whole Foods for a pre-cut pumpkin … or make a day out of the picking process and choose your perfect gourd from Mount Pleasant’s Boone Hall Farms. After you pick a picture-perfect pumpkin, take a stroll through the farm’s corn maze, go for a hayride, and visit the petting zoo. Kids will love the spider web, slide tower, and sand pit; adults, enjoy the retail tent, where you can shop for in-season produce, local jellies and jams, fall-themed decor, and more.

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Fish or Treat (October 24): The South Carolina Aquarium is one of our favorite places to visit year-round—given that, many of us have invested in a membership there. One of our favorite member events is the Halloween party, where kids (and festive adults, too!) come donning their best costumes (there’s a contest, so people go all out) to dance, learn, nosh on sweet treats, and play.

The Fall Tours (October 3-November 2): Take a peek inside some of the most historic properties in the Holy City during the Preservation Society of Charleston’s fall home, garden, and architecture tours. Glean historical tidbits aplenty during morning walk-and-talk tours (topics range from the ABCs of architecture to the leading ladies of local historic preservation) or pick your favorite neighborhood to tour houses within (options include East Battery, Tradd Street, and lower King Street). Gardeners will love the private garden tours while hobby photographers will want to join in on the photography walkabout and workshops. If you’re a fan of the spooky season, don’t miss the Haunts and Haints tour on October 27.

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Holiday Festival of Lights (November 15-December 31). Starting in mid-November, James Island County Park is the hub for seasonal fun. The Holiday Festival of Lights is a site to be seen: Drive through the expansive park and gaze at dozens and dozens of holiday-light vignettes—from a bright and shining mini Ravenel Bridge to animals aplenty to a Lochness monster. If you have kids in tow, park the car and head to Santa’s Village, where a Victorian carousel, massive sand sculpture, hot chocolate and other sweet treats, and, of course, Santa Claus await you. Bring a canned food item or some dog or cat food to be donated to the Lowcountry Food Bank to receive $5 off your entry fee Monday-Thursday (applicable for vehicles with 1-15 guests only).

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The Kiawah Island Marathon (December 14). Who’s been training?! Whether you’re running the full or half or are simply spectating, the 42nd-annual Kiawah Island Golf Resort Marathon is well worth a visit. Bring a bell and cheer on those running (they’ll take off at 8 a.m.), then take a refreshing stroll along Kiawah Beachwalker Park’s stunning shoreline. It’s one of the most scenic athletic events in the Lowcountry, and the weather is typically just perfect for a good run.

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