As the leaves start to change color, the fun really begins to ramp up in Gatlinburg. Fall events abound year after year – and 2022 is no exception. In order to get in on all the spectacular happenings, you just have to jot down your favorites on the calendar, and then get ready to hit the road. Ready to get started? Here’s a look at more than a few 2022 fall events in Gatlinburg you simply cannot miss.
Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival
The Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival celebrates the bounty of Gatlinburg from mid-September through the end of November. During that time, the seasonal decorations come out in full force, creating tons of fantastic backdrops for all your photos.
As you take picture after picture, remember to jot down your favorite displays, so you can vote before leaving town. The “People’s Choice Award” winner announcement will occur on November 5th to honor the best display of the bunch.
Ripley’s Fright Nights
A true Gatlinburg staple, Ripley’s Believe It or Not! will roll out Fright Nights every weekend through October. The themes will change weekly, although they haven’t been announced quite yet.
No matter what themes come about, haunted characters will roam the halls of all the haunted houses created onsite. At around 6 pm each night, a parade introduces the guests to all the characters before they retreat to lurk in the shadows.
Gatlinburg’s Craftsman’s Fair
The Gatlinburg’s Craftsman’s Fair presents all the best unique artisan goods made by talented local residents. From October 13th through the 30th, more than 200 booths will sit in the 150,000-square-foot Gatlinburg Convention Center, giving you plenty of time to shop your heart out.
In addition to all the shopping, you can come by for live music performances from the top bluegrass, country, and gospel artists from 12 pm to 3 pm daily. Plus, there will be a kid’s corner with crafts and tasty concessions for sale to keep you well hydrated and fueled up for fun.
OktOBERfest at Ober Gatlinburg
The 13th Annual Oktoberfest at Ober Gatlinburg will kick off on September 23rd to immerse the park in rich German traditions. Mug after mug of frosty brews plus traditional Bavarian foods get the excitement going, for sure, but that’s not all there’s to enjoy.
The Smoky Mountain Oompah Band will put on live music performances complete with folk dances, yodels, and sing-a-longs. The retail shops add to the magic with all their OktOBERfest swag, including fancy beer steins.
Astra Lumina at Anakeesta
If you’ve always wanted to walk amongst the stars, there’s perhaps a no better place to go than Astra Lumina at Anakeesta. Starting on November 1st, brilliant light displays will transform the park into a celestial wonderland.
Although the stars only come out at nightfall, you’ll want to arrive well before that to experience the magic of the park in autumn. The fall colors come out in full force all throughout the season, adding to the beauty of all the attractions.
Trick or Treat Kick-Off Karnival
What do you do with all the excitement that arises before trick or treating commences? Go to the Trick or Treat Kick-Off Karnival at Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies, of course. Held on October 31st from 11 am to 3 pm, this event welcomes kids of all ages to come to play games and work off all their nervous energy.
Vendors will have plenty of delicious food to enjoy before everyone digs into all the candy. Then, at 2 pm, guests can participate in the costume contest to get jazzed about going door to door for even more sweet treats as soon as the evening hours begin.
Autumn Adventure at SkyLift Park
As the fall season comes into view, you just know it’s time for Autumn Adventures at SkyLift Park. At this annual event, the fall foliage is the true star of the show, especially if you come by early in the morning to catch the mountain sunrises.
Beyond that, the bright seasonal decorations take the scenery to the next level. Plus, there are plenty of fun happenings, like trick or treat parties for the youngsters. Most years, the fun and excitement begins in September and runs through Halloween, but they have yet to announce a start date for 2022.
If thrills and chills are the name of the game for your fall season, set your sights on the Mysterious Mansion. Available from Friday through Sunday every week in October, this mansion promises to bring on the frights and give you endless scary stories to tell in the dark.
Want to see what happens behind the scenes? Just ask about joining the crew to play a frightening character to remember. You’ll get to spend all weekend long in the haunted house, leading to even more frightening tales to last a lifetime.
View the Fall Foliage
All the leaves across Gatlinburg start to put on a breathtaking display as the fall season arrives. The mountainside lights up in a flash of reds, oranges, and yellows, which looks magnificent against the vivid evergreens. The fall colors reach their peak in mid-October through early November, but there’s never a bad time to come enjoy all the scenic views.
Great places to go leaf peeping near Gatlinburg include:
As you go to Anakeesta, Ober Gatlinburg, and other outdoor venues, you’ll get even more views of the fall colors. So, be sure to bring your camera wherever you go to avoid missing out on a chance to capture the views forevermore.
As we march ever closer to autumn, even more, Gatlinburg fall events will land on the books for 2022. So, keep your ear to the ground and your calendar ready, so you can fit as much fun into the season as possible.