Tempe Fall Festivals You Won’t Want to Miss

Author: Amy

Posted on: August 11, 2017
Last updated on: September 14th, 2018 at 10:22 am


With 330 days of sunshine each year and a vibrant downtown community, Tempe is the perfect festival location. Fall through spring, you will find a variety of fun festival events in our city. In Tempe for a meeting? Don’t forget to check the calendar and make it a point to mix in a little entertainment as you take a break from a busy day of meetings.

Festival season kicks off with the annual Four Peaks Octoberfest at Tempe Town Lake, October 12-14, 2018. A tradition in Tempe going back more than 40 years, this three-day outdoor festival at Tempe Town Lake features beer (of course!), polka dancing and lots of food! What more could you ask for?

Fall brings cooler days to Tempe and it is the perfect time to enjoy the beauty of the Sonoran desert at the Desert Botanical Garden. October 12, 2018 – May 12, 2019, Electric Desert will transform the Garden into a living canvas using a mesmerizing light and sound display. Klip Collective, an experimental video and mapping shop from Philadephia, will turn the Garden into a sensory wonderland. Also this fall, the Garden will have a Dia de los Muertos the first weekend of November which offers fun for the whole family. On November 9-11, 2018 the garden spices things up with the Chiles and Chocolate Festival – offering the best chiles, chocolates, salsas and other Southwestern favorites.  And in addition to tasty treats the festival also has a bar, DJ and live performances.

The holiday season kicks off just after Thanksgiving with our annual Fantasy of Lights Opening Night Parade, November 23, 2018, and the lighting of the Christmas tree. On December 8, 2018, enjoy dazzling lighted boats float across Tempe Town Lake at the Fantasy of Lights Boat Parade.

Continue your holiday celebrations at the popular Las Noches de las Luminarias. The Desert Botanical Garden lights up with 8,000 glowing luminarias and thousands of twinkle lights for 21 magical evenings, late November through the month of December. Come and stroll the glowing paths and enjoy live music and delicious food along the way. This is one event you don’t want to miss!

One of the most popular events is Tempe Festival of the Arts, which is coming to Downtown Tempe November 30-December 2, 2018. Each December and March Downtown Tempe turns in to a haven for art lovers. More than 300 artists are selected to display their works from booths that line Mill Avenue and the surrounding streets. Their unique, hand-made works include art pieces, jewelry, home décor, local wines, beer and food. It’s the perfect time to find some special one-of-a-kind gifts for loved ones. And when you need a break from shopping you can relax with a glass of wine or a craft brew at three combination beer and wine gardens offering local brews from Tempe-based breweries. Or, grab a bite to eat from Food Truck Alley or one of our downtown eateries, while listening to live music.

This is just a small sample of the events and festival that delight our community throughout the year.  Make sure to schedule some fun next time you visit! For a full list of our upcoming happenings, check out our calendar of events:  www.tempetourism.com/events.

Four Peaks Octoberfest

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