This year marks the 16th Annual Beaches to Woodlands Tour, a series of family-friendly fall festivities from the end of September through the beginning of November. Enjoy the crisp air as you pick your own pumpkin, curb your cravings with regional and international foods, fish the many waters in Santa Rosa County, and discover new museums and cultural attractions.
- The Holland Farms Pumpkin Patch and Maze, Sonshine Family Farms Corn Mazes and mini golf, and Sweet Season Farms Corn Maze and Fall Fun Festival are open throughout the season.
- The 38th Annual St. Rose of Lima International Fall Festival (Sept. 27-29), features Filipino, Polish, Italian foods and barbeque along with crafts, rides and a marketplace.
- Bands on the Blackwater and the Riverwalk Market take place Fri. nights, Sept. through Nov. 15, with live entertainment and foods from local vendors.
- Juana’s 7th Annual Oktoberfest Beer Tasting is on tap on Oct. 5 and offers a festive atmosphere and activities for children.
- The 30th Annual Jay Peanut Festival, Oct. 5-6, celebrates the peanut, one of Santa Rosa’s staple crops.
- Several Beaches to Woodlands events highlight the love of fishing — and hopefully catching. Take a Kid Fishing (Oct. 5) includes a free kid’s fishing pole giveaway to the first 300 children under the age of 12, and a fishing clinic at Navarre Beach Pier.
- Proceeds from the Navarre Fishing Rodeo (Oct. 5-6) benefit the Navarre Beach Marine Park including the Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center, the Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary, Marine Science Station, and Take a Kid Fishing.
- On Navarre Beach, the 11th Annual Run for the Reef 10K and 5K, and Kid’s One-Mile Fun Run take place Oct. 12. The Pink Pirate’s “Save a Rack” Annual 5K Run is held Oct. 19, while the Fireman Challenge - a more intense endurance event - is Oct. 20.
- The Annual Ghost Walk Downtown Milton sets the tone for Halloween, Oct. 25-26, and the Science Spooktacular by the Sea presented by the Navarre Beach Marine Science Station on Oct. 26 highlights creeps from the deep, endangered ocean species and science that glows in the dark. For a less haunting experience, visit Boo at the Zoo – Trick or Treat Trail at Gulf Breeze Zoo in October.
The Beaches to Woodlands Tour is coordinated by the Santa Rosa County Tourism Development Office. For more information and a full list of events, visit www.beachestowoodlands.com or call 850-981-8900.