Things To Do
11 Can't Miss Festivals to Help Celebrate Fall in Downtown
Photo: Patrick Bertolino

There are plenty of reasons to love the fall in Downtown: pumpkin-spice smells start permeating the buildings, breezy patio weather calls for more outdoor dining... But best of all is the exciting line-up of fall festivals, parades, and events that overflow the streets in Downtown Houston. Start digging out your sweaters and bask in the beauty of fall at these eleven can't miss festivals.


7th Annual Librofest

500 McKinney 

The 7th Annual LibroFEST is not your average day at the library. The family-friendly festival will gather kids of all ages on September 29 for a celebration of books, art and culture. Kids will get a deeper glimpse of Hispanic heritage culture through bilingual storytelling, craft-making, poetry readings, live music, and fashion from noon to 4 pm at the Central Library Plaza.


Oktoberfest Houston

The Water Works at Buffalo Bayou

Put on your best dirndl, lederhosen or other Tyrolean duds and embrace the German and Texas culture at Oktoberfest Houston. Get boozy with a large selection of German and import craft beer, dance to the best polka music in Texas, compete in the 7th Annual Oktoberfest Olympiad games or challenge a friend to a match of cornhole (and perhaps some yodeling) at the festival’s Houston Sport & Social Club Fun Zone. Rain or shine, this party train will start rolling at 11 am sharp.


Nigeria Cultural Parade

1510 Polk

Witness the street-wide celebration honoring Nigeria’s 58th year of independence in the heart of Downtown. The parade kicks off bright and early on September 29 starting on Jackson Street at Bell. Following the parade, guests are invited to Root Memorial park for fun activities, signature Nigerian eats, and more.


A Night At Market Square

301 Milam

Downtown's biggest neighborhood block party returns better than ever on October 13. Get a front-row seat at Market Square Park as it transforms into Circo de Luna, complete with aerialists, contortionists, jugglers, and fire-breathers! Enjoy mystical performances by the highly talented entertainment troupe, Cirque Mythos and shop for unique wares at the curiosities night market from 6-10 pm. The fun doesn't stop there! The party continues with must-see acts around the neighborhood, including spoken word performances by Writers In The Schools at The Tipping Point, a sideshow edition of Bathtub Full of Gin at Prohibition Theater, residential night tours at Aris Market Square, drink and food specials at select bars and restaurants, plus more. 


Korean Festival

1500 Mckinney

K-pop got you hooked? This cultural celebration is just for you! Celebrate 10 years of Korean heritage at Discovery Green with a day of live entertainment, delicious Korean eats, a Korean Folk Village where guests can create origami, and plenty of fun for all ages. The festivities begin at 10 am and admission is free. 


Bayou City Art Festival

901 Bagby

The new season brings this walkable feast of art and culture right under the iconic Houston skyline. The weekend-long Bayou City Art Festival is produced by the Art Colony Association and supports Houston's thriving arts community. Channel your inner artist, shop for a great cause October 13-14 and enjoy live entertainment, crafts and a wickedly awesome Halloween costume contest.

Photo: Katia Horner

Heartmade Harvest Art Market

1000 Main

Downtown's signature Heartmade Harvest Art Market will help you knock out your holiday shopping early. Take your pumpkin-spice latte coffee to go and shop for unique finds from 70+ local artists, crafters and creatives along Main Street Square on November 3. If you need something a bit stronger in between all of the shopping, stop by the Saint Arnold beer garden and sip on craft brews, plus enjoy interactive elements, special appearances by your favorite Thanksgiving Day characters and live music in the heart of Downtown. 


International Quilts Market & Festival

1001 Avenida de las Americas

Whoever said quilting was a dying art has clearly never been to The International Quilt Festival. This one-of-a-kind festival brings together over 50,000 avid fans of quilting, sewing, and stitching for a weekend of fun to the George R. Brown Convention Center. Meet talented quilters from around the world, learn everything there is to know about the industry at any of their 500+ classes and workshops, and shop through 1,500+ quilts and textile artworks on display. Preview night takes place on November 7, followed by the festival on November 8-11. 


Houston Turkish Festival

600 Louisiana

Back for its 26th year, The Houston Turkish Festival will celebrate all things Turkey at Jones Plaza. Whether you opt to attend on November 17 or 18, there will be no shortage of authentic Turkish food, traditional folk dancing, and arts & crafts. Guests can also shop for traditional Turkish art and souvenirs at their curated Grand Bazaar, then stick around for award-winning performances by Turkey's very own Tuana Ankara Folk Dance Group. 

Photo: Houston Press

Via Colori Street Painting Festival

901 Bagby

Via Colori is Downtown's most anticipated festival of the fall. All roads will point you to Hermann Square November 17-18, where 200+ talented artists will infuse the surrounding streets of McKinney, Bagby and Walker into colorful chalk masterpieces. You'll become mesmerized by the massive outdoor art gallery, diverse music, activities, and help support The Center for Hearing and Speech.


69th Annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Parade

Downtown Houston

Let's face it. Thanksgiving Day isn't complete without the carving of the turkey, football, and the 69th Annual H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade, of course! One of the oldest traditions in Downtown, this holiday celebration boasts sensational floats, high-flying balloons, marching bands, artistic entries and live entertainment. This year, the parade takes place on November 22 and guests can embrace the holiday spirit anywhere along the parade route or purchase general seating for front row views. 

Photo: Richard Carson

Ready to start exploring Downtown this fall? Visit our online calendar to learn more about all the excitement happening throughout the season. 

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